This weekend was our Semi-annual General Conference for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Every year I like to share some of my favorite talks here on my blog, because they inspire me to do and be better. This year it has been hard to pick a few of my favorites because they all touched and inspired me so much. So much strength was given to my spirit, and for that I am grateful, I realize I needed it.
This Conference was really special because we got three new Apostles called after the passing of President Packer, Elder Perry, and Elder Scott in the last six months. The three that were called are Elder Rasband, Elder Stevenson, and Elder Renlund, all great men and you can read more about it from the church here. It was pretty neat because the third one was the 100th Apostle to be called since the church was organized to the restored Gospel.
Watching Conference in our house means toys everywhere and letting Jonas enjoy some extra snacks so we can listen. Here he kept crawling (he does that when he's being silly) up to the subwoofer because he could see himself in the reflection, he would repeatedly say "hi" to himself then kiss his reflection.
The Women's Conference was a week prior to the rest of conference beginning, and it was a great start. For me it held messages of Divine Nature, Motherhood, Bettering Ourselves, Trusting God, Strengthening Our Homes, Eternal Blessings, Finding Joy, and the Family. It gave me such a great reminder that what is most important is family, through His Plan of Happiness.
Elder Holland gave such a beautiful talk on the love of Christ and the love of a mother, I literally teared up a couple times. The best line he gave was at the end, as a young mother I appreciated when he said "To all mothers in every circumstance, including those who struggle--and all will-- I say, 'Be peaceful. Believe in God and yourself. You are doing better than you think you are." I love my husband so much, and our love is always growing, but since I had Jonas I have felt such a great and different love for him. The love I have for Jonas is so strong, I just can't explain it. Sometimes it's so overpowering that I grab him and we hug. Loving Jonas has helped me gain more appreciation for my Heavenly Father and the love He has for me.
I loved, loved Elder Standfill's talk, because he emphasized our choice. We must choose the light of the Savior, it will strengthen us and help us out of the dark. A few months ago I decided I wanted to be a better me. I wanted to try to be more patient, a better homemaker, a better neighbor, and better with my faith. I have become better because I choose to do better, and I have leaned more on the Lord for help. I still have so much to work on, but I am so grateful for the guidance he has given me, because now I feel I am a better mom for choosing to ask the Lord for help.
Such a great talk! President Uchtdorf is just always on top of it. He challenged us to simplify our approach to the Gospel. Such wise and simple words! Lately I have felt discouraged by the world, and seeing so many friends and family struggle and leave the church. Although this has not affected my own testimony, it does feel disheartening. President Uchtdorf reminded us we need to focus on the simplicity of the Gospel, and not all the man-made programs and burdens. Although it was not his intent for me to feel less burdened by what I see on social media, I did. All we must do is turn to Christ.
I was excited when I saw Elder Clark was speaking, he was the President of BYU-Idaho during my time there and I always found his devotionals inspiring. He was yet another reminder that simple obedience invites the spirit, maybe it's just me but I heard this a few times. Doing our best to obey the Lord will always bring great blessings.
I absolutely loved when President Eyring said this quote. Personal revelation is so important, it is how we gain our personal testimony of the Word of God. Revelation given to us from the General Authorities is also important, that is why we have them. Sometimes I think this is forgotten. People take too far what they think is revelation and try to convince others, like the woman who claimed to have a dream and told everyone we would be living in tents in Utah by the end of September because the world was ending or something, but surprise it didn't happen because she doesn't hold that authority. (end of rant)
I loved the focus on women throughout conference. So many of our leaders praised the women in their life, reminding us that we matter. I have always felt important and empowered in the gospel, and I give a great credit of that to my parents and my husband, who considers me an equal partner in all things. I also loved when President Nelson reminded us that nothing is more important then our own conversion, this is why I am striving to do better with scripture study, prayer, and Sabbath day observance.
Lastly, President Monson. I love our prophet so much, he always shares the best stories. This quote has given me strength. As I mentioned before, lately I have felt that among those I know, many are struggling in their faith. But I love the Savior and I have a testimony of His gospel. Living in today's world requires so much faith and courage, and it will be possible if I do my best to follow the promptings given to me and follow the words spoken at General Conference this weekend.
I am so thankful for the gospel in my life. I feel that it helps me become a better person. Through the Savior I am a more loving and compassionate mother and friend. I am thankful for our leaders who took the time to prepare and teach us, giving me a renewal of faith to try a little harder to be a little better.
You can find and watch the talks given at General Conference at lds.org