Dieter F. Uchtdorf

This is General Conference weekend! Whoo Hoo!! I LOVE General Conference! I suppose we all do! (My husband just informed me that the news is reporting 100,000 Mormons are flocking to Salt Lake City this weekend!)

The First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints

The First Presidency of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints

In case you’ve never heard about it yet, the worldwide members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints gather together twice a year for General Conference, held at the Conference Centre in Salt Lake.

We tune in via satellite at our Stake Centres or even at home at the computer or in front of the television two times a year, on the first weekend of April and October.

“On a computer, phone, or other electronic device, we can read, listen to, watch, and share the teachings of the prophets. Anytime, anywhere, we can enlarge our knowledge, strengthen our faith and testimony, protect our families, and lead them safely home.” Robert D. Hales

Everyone is welcome! Click here to watch: 184th General Conference 

Beginning tomorrow (Saturday) at 12:00 p.m. Eastern Time, there will be four general sessions. (Saturday and Sunday at 12 and 4 p.m. Eastern Time). And as well, an 8 p.m. ET Saturday evening priesthood session for men and boys.

And…if you REALLY would like to watch it again, it is available ever after at LDS.ORG !!

 “The world is moving away from the Lord faster and farther than ever before. The adversary has been loosed upon the earth. We watch, hear, read, study, and share the words of prophets to be forewarned and protected. For example, “The Family: A Proclamation to the World” was given long before we experienced the challenges now facing the family.” Robert D. Hales

Personal Revelation

“These conferences are always under the direction of the Lord, guided by His Spirit. We are not assigned specific topics. Over weeks and months, often through sleepless nights, we wait upon the Lord. Through fasting, praying, studying, and pondering, we learn the message that He wants us to give.

I promise that if you will listen, you will feel the Spirit well up within you. The Lord will tell you what He wants you to do with your life.” Robert D. Hales

To get the most out of attending General Conference, remember to prepare. Ponder concerning any challenges you are facing, then keep a question on your heart, or even write it down. Have you ever tested this out?

Even if we were sitting together listening to the same words you would not receive the same message as I do. You too, can receive distinctly clear answers for your personal situation. The message you receive is personal revelation just for you!

“In conferences we can receive the word of the Lord meant just for us. One member testified: “As I listened to your address, I was astounded. … Your talk was personal revelation directly from the Lord to my family. I have never experienced such a strong manifestation of the Spirit in my life as those minutes when the Holy Ghost spoke directly to me.”

Another said, “I have never before felt so profoundly that a talk was being given to me.”

This is possible because the Holy Ghost carries the word of the Lord unto our hearts in terms we can understand.” Robert D. Hales

I’ve learned to follow this counsel to ponder and question from our leaders . Afterwards, it is very inspiring to realize how much more can be received whenever I’ve made time to record it in my journal. It is a tremendous opportunity to receive inspiration and direction from the Lord.

“As you prepare for general conference, I invite you to ponder questions you need to have answered. For example, you might yearn for direction and guidance by the Lord regarding challenges you are facing.

Answers to your specific prayers may come directly from a particular talk or from a specific phrase. At other times answers may come in a seemingly unrelated word, phrase, or song. A heart filled with gratitude for the blessings of life and an earnest desire to hear and follow the words of counsel will prepare the way for personal revelation. 

What a marvelous privilege it is to hear God’s messages for each of us during general conference! Let us prepare well for this great blessing of divine guidance delivered by His chosen servants. For this is no ordinary blessing. “Dieter F Uchtdorf

Have a beautiful weekend!

blizzard4The wind’s howling. It’s a snowy blustery day–again. Everyone is saying this is the coldest bitterest winter ever in memory.

And I can’t help but feel a bit of longing for Belize.

I could be lounging in the sun, hot sands, snorkeling in warm ocean waters, and the vivid colors of the undersea world. I could be enjoying a little of heaven on earth.

This time last year I had never heard of beautiful Belize. Very quickly I informed myself!

Enthused, we gathered all the knowledge we needed to get there. How would we get there? Where would we stay? What would we eat? Was it safe? What did others say? What would we do?

Do you ever think about this life’s sojourn?

We’re all here together on an important journey. Where are we headed? Do you know? To travel anywhere we need knowledge and power-the ability to travel to get there.

And very true of our mortal adventure, knowledge and power are necessary to return to Heavenly Father’s presence.

19 And this greater priesthood ministereth the gospel and holdeth the key of the mysteries of the kingdom, even the key of the knowledge of God
 
20 Therefore, in the ordinances thereof, the power of godliness is manifest
 
21 And without the ordinances thereof, and the authority of the priesthood, the power of godliness is not manifest unto men in the flesh; 
 
22 For without this no man can see the face of God, even the Father, and live. D & C 84:19-22

No matter where I’ve travelled I’ve spent hectic days before departing, completing tons of stuff on my do to list.

I’ll bet it’s the same for you. Will all the last minute visits, meetings, shopping, laundry, folding, packing, letters, phone calls, emptying the trash, clearing the fridge, orienting some responsible soul to water the garden, discard junk mail, check up on the house, and then dropping off pets to the kennel get done on time?

And of course the very day before, the phone won’t stop demanding your time, someone will need you to run an errand and the universe will conspire to throw you into some situation that demands your talent-no one else will do.

The last hours are always hectic. Sometimes, once I’ve made it onto the plane and can breathe easy, I consider it a miracle to be sitting there at all!

(If you usually get to sit in peace and quiet for the whole day before a major trip, please share your secret!)

Anyways, I say all this to point out that in the very same way we may be filling in busy days while we are preparing for the greatest of all destinations we will ever undertake.

“Those who join this Church love the Savior Jesus Christ and they wish to follow Him. They rejoice in the knowledge that God speaks to mankind again.
 
When they receive sacred priesthood ordinances and make covenants with God, they can feel His power in their lives.
 
… The poor in spirit and honest of heart find great treasures of knowledge here.” Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Consider how we are preparing for this trip of all trips.

Time with family and friends, compassionate service, magnifying our callings, discovering and using our talents, hearing and obeying promptings, spending time in prayer, reading our scriptures, missionary work, learning God’s will for our lives, following the example of our Savior in all ways, and most of all– learning how it is that God’s knowledge and power manifested in our lives will enable us to one day be in Heavenly Father’s presence.

“Grace and peace be multiplied unto you through the knowledge of God, and of Jesus our Lord, according as His divine power hath given unto us all things that pertain unto life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him that hath called us to glory and virtue:
 
Whereby are given unto us exceeding great and precious promises: that by these ye might be partakers of the divine nature” 2 Peter 1: 2-4 

Are you preparing for the greatest of all journeys—an eternal home with Heavenly Father? Have you the knowledge and power you need to get there?

Are you excited about this trip? What are you doing to be ready?

 

 

Do you live with daily unrelenting pain? Emptiness and ache in your bosom? Have you received heart wrenching news on the eve of Christmas? Are you feeling lonely? Are you ill? Do you know what panic attacks feel like? Are you depressed? Are your feelings hurt? Grieving deeply?

Are you suffering?

“Is any one of you in trouble? …Is any one of you sick? …pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord. And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well…the prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective” James 5:13-16

It’s the time of year when just about everyone has their mind on gift exchange and celebrating the season with those we love.

Several years ago, I was last minute shopping on Christmas Eve. My heart was breaking and my whole being weighed down, feeling betrayed and heavy with disappointment. I could not stop crying. In dire need of relief and not able to approach anyone but the Lord, my prayers felt stifled, stiff and totally inadequate for my predicament.

Certain that Christmas was in ruins, irreparable forever, I struggled with the idea of calling someone for extra help. I knew I looked horrid with a red face, swollen eyes and smeared mascara. I sure wasn’t in any mood to speak with anybody. I didn’t want to bother anyone on this, of all days.

Shutting my mind to the voices of pride and objections, I called a faithful brother and his wife from the mall to see if they were available, gratefully driving to their home when invited. I asked this priesthood holder for, and received a priesthood blessing.

Soon, completely transformed and totally filled with the deepest, incredible, calming influence, I continued my preparations to enjoy Christmas thoroughly with my family. No more tears. I was filled with assurance and a profound peace that I previously would not ever have thought possible in the circumstances. I felt strong, like nothing could ever shake me again.

I hope that this Christmas and every day of the year we will consider, in particular, the many gifts we have been given by our loving Heavenly Father. I hope we will receive these gifts with the wonder, thankfulness and excitement of a child.” President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Our Heavenly Father has given us many gifts. First, as we know, is the perfect gift of His Only Begotten Son, the gift of the Holy Ghost, personal revelation and guidance, our salvation, eternal life and more-too numerous to count.

One of Heavenly Father’s gifts that I have learned to honor and appreciate is the power of the Holy Priesthood upon the earth today. I do not have a priesthood holder in my home and at first I did not understand their responsibility to serve with the authority of God.

Here is a marvelous excerpt with some explanation by President Dieter F. Uchtdorf.

“We know and understand that the priesthood is the eternal power and authority of God. We can easily recite this definition from memory. However, do we truly comprehend the significance of what we’re saying? Let me repeat: the priesthood is the eternal power and authority of God.

Think of it. Through the priesthood, God created and governs the heavens and the earth. Through this power, He redeems and exalts His children, bringing “to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.”

Our all-powerful Father in Heaven has entrusted priesthood authority to us—mortal beings who, by definition, are flawed and imperfect. He grants to us the authority to act in His name for the salvation of His children.

By this great power we are authorized to preach the gospel, administer the ordinances of salvation, help build the kingdom of God on the earth, and bless and serve our families and our fellowmen.

This is the sacred priesthood we bear.

The priesthood, or any responsibility within it, cannot be purchased or commanded. The use of priesthood power cannot be influenced, swayed, or compelled by position, by wealth, or by influence.

It is a spiritual power that operates on heavenly law. It originates in the great Heavenly Father of us all. Its power can be controlled and directed only through principles of righteousness, not self-righteousness.

Christ is the source of all true priesthood authority and power on earth. It is His work, in which we are privileged to assist.

“And no one can assist in this work except he shall be humble and full of love, having faith, hope, and charity, being temperate in all things, whatsoever shall be entrusted to his care.”

I no longer hesitate to seek a faithful brother when I need relief from the frailties and weaknesses of this life. Why remain in inordinate pain, either physical or emotional when a few moments’ blessing may transform my well being?

When my challenges seem greater than my lone prayers can handle, I am grateful beyond words for the service of my righteous and faithful brothers. The Savior’s peace and comfort that follows is a priceless warm wrapping.

Are you suffering? You too may have access to this precious gift. Seek this blessing at any time of the year. Ask humbly and with faith of one who bears that Holy Priesthood, after the Order of the Son of God.