Saturday, April 02, 2011

Saturday Afternoon Session of Conference

Statistical Report
2896 stakes
340 mission
28660 wards/branches
14,131,467 members
2000+ converts
52,000+ missionaries
134 temples in operation

Boyd K. Packer
400 years since the publication of the King James Bible.
Scriptures include the Bible, the Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ, the Doctrine and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price.
"How be it my church if it be not in my name?... If it is called in my name, than it be my church."

The world will refer to us as they will, but we need to declare boldly and proudly that we belong to the Church of Jesus Christ.

The work of the church is performed by ordinary men and women. It is by the gift of the Holy Ghost and revelation we can be guided to carry out God's will. Others may not accept that, but they must know that WE DO accept it.

We are to be tested in this life, but we must - and we can - resist the temptations.

The husband is the head of the home, and the wife is the heart of the home and they work together in an equal partnership. The man should revere the woman, the woman sustain the man, and both should work together to teach and bring up the children.

Leave it alone. How can we be expected to leave it alone whenever a terrible wrong has been committed? We can ruin our lives and the lives of others if we hold on to our grief, pain, resentment, etc. If you leave it alone, you allow for the Spirit to enter your lives and help heal.

Some take offense from the history of the church and its leaders. They do not leave it alone, and they fall away and into inactivity. If you are offended, forgive and forget: and leave it alone. Condemn not the things of God...

A Latter-day Saint is quite an ordinary person. We live in the world. We are part of families and communities. We are positive and happy and not afraid of life. We live this ordinary life, but should be extraordinary in our commitment to the gospel of Jesus Christ.

It is not easy to be a Latter-day Saint, but in the end, it is the only course.

Russel M. Nelson
We live to die; we die to live again.
Our faith now becomes our posterity's faith in the future.
We live in a world of competing ideologies, of strife. Of wars and rumors of wars. Of tsunamis and earthquakes and other natural disasters.

We should not let our fear replace our faith.

Cafeteria Obedience: Picking and choosing which commandments to obey. This will not work. To prepare to meet God, one keeps ALL of His commandments, which will strengthen faith and protect us.

Obedience lets blessings to flow without constraint. He will bless us with more light.

God's angels are ever on-call to help us.

D&C 98

Difficult days are ahead. Rarely will it be easy or popular to be a Latter-day Saint. The persecution can either crush us, or propel us to be stronger and a better example. We should work to make our faith resilient. Unfailing faith is fortified by humble and heartfelt prayer.

The greatest of all the priesthood blessings are bestowed in the temple.

Our life's battles are not meant to be fought alone.

Fear not, be of good cheer! The future is as bright as your faith. - President Monson

Richard Maynes
Truth seeking investigators are drawn to the doctrine of eternal families. Eternal families is an essential element to the gospel.

The adversary wants to defeat God's plan, and is leading an unprecedented attack on the family. Using selfishness, greed and pornography, he demeans the family and tries to deprive us of family relationships that have eternal potential.

There is great power and protection in establishing Celestial practices and traditions in the home. It creates a culture where the Spirit can teach. Celestial practices will help ward off the practices that go against a Christ-centered home.

"Twas a sheep, not a lamp, that strayed..." It is the responsibility of the parents to teach by example. When the parents fall away, it won't be long before their children follow.

Twas a sheep not a lamb that strayed away
In the parable Jesus told,
A grown-up sheep that strayed away
From the ninety and nine in the fold.

And why for the sheep should we seek
And earnestly hope and pray?
Because there is danger when sheep go wrong;
They lead the lambs astray.

Lambs will follow the sheep, you know,
Wherever the sheep may stray.
When sheep go wrong, it won’t take long
Til the lambs are as wrong as they.

And so with the sheep we earnestly plead
For the sake of the lambs today,
For when sheep are lost, what a terrible cost
The lambs will have to pay!

-C. C. Miller

Cecil O. Samuelson
Questions are usually the result of honest inquiry.

Gaining and retaining a testimony of the gospel is something that everyone can do.

Who's entitled to have a testimony? Everyone who is willing to pay the price - or keep the commandments - may have a testimony.

How does one obtain the necessary revelation? The promise found in the Book of Mormon - ask God the Eternal Father. Pray thoughtfully, specifically, etc. and He will manifest the truth by the Power of the Holy Ghost.

A testimony is similar to a living organism. It needs constant attention, nourishment in order to thrive and grow. Neglect will cause it to diminish.

Everyone has worth because we are all children of God. He loves us, knows us and wants us to return to Him. We need to have faith in his timing.

Testimonies come in response to specific experiences, questions and takes a gradual process.

We must trust in the things we [already] believe in and know, in order to sustain us during trying times.

Teaching someone else will strengthen and increase our testimony.

We must do the basics: prayer, scripture study and attending church. When we neglect these things, we put our testimony in jeopardy.

We must not have higher standards for others than for ourselves. Others' deficiencies do not make up for what we lack.

Dallin H. Oaks - Desire
Desires dictate priorities.  Priorities shape our choices. Choices shape actions, which affect changing, becoming, and achieving.

We have a basic need for food, but it can be over-ridden by a desire to fast.
We have a need for shelter, but it can be over-ridden by those who camp.
We need sleep, but it can be temporarily over-ridden by greater desires.

"I will grant unto thee thy desires because of thy faith," the Lord to Enos.
Desire, labor and faith are the key ingredients to fulfilling our desires. But faith precedes this fulfillment.

God does judge according to our works - to the desires of our hearts. Are we prepared to have the Eternal Judge attach this enormous significance the things we truly desire?

It is not always easy to set our desires into appropriate priorities.

All of us face potential traps that will prevent progress to our eternal destinies. If our righteous desires - which must be heartfelt, unwavering - are set as priorities, then they will cut and carve and sever ourselves from sins and addictions. What we consistently desire over time will be what we become and what we receive in eternity.

All should desire and work to secure an eternal marriage. We should exert priority methods to attain it.

It is our actions and desires that allow us to become something.

M. Russell Ballard
By small and simple things, are great things brought to pass. And by very small things, the Lord brings about the salvation of souls.

The gospel is simple, despite us trying to make it complicated. Patient accumulation of precious "flecks of gold" bring what will inevitably bring us the wealth that we desire.

Acts of service, charity. When we act with charity, we act in the way Christ would act. The love that the Savior spoke of, is an active love: simple.
Charity begins at home by using the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.

Serve in church, and still apply the Golden Rule. Be sensitive to others' needs, which will create unity. Where charity exists, there is no room for gossip or unkind words. Through love and service, these acts of service create loving ties and bonds to the helpers and the helpees.

Serve in our communities. As a pure expression of love and concern for others, we can improve our communities. There are countless ways to serve, and friendships can be developed.

"Kindess is an essence of greatness. It is a passport that opens doors..." - Joseph B. Worthlin

Such a WONDERFUL session! I am excited to read Elder Oaks and President Samuelson's talks. So far, they are my favorite. I can't wait until Elder Holland speaks tomorrow!

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