Sunday, October 3, 2010

General Conference Notes: Sunday Morning Session

President Henry B. Eyring, 1st Counselor in the First Presidency
President Eyring prayed about what to speak about and received an answer: trust in the Lord. God sends messengers and messages to His children to build trust in them so they will obey. In the premortal life, those who chose not to come to earth lacked trust in God. Jonah, Peter, and Nephi are scriptural examples of men who showed trust in the Lord. Trust can build families (personal story of paying off their mortgage after hearing the counsel of the prophet) and trust can bless communities (story of Norwegian woman in Great Depression placing clothes on her porch). The Lord places people in positions who will help. We show trust when we listen with real intent and then go and do.

Elder Boyd K. Packer, of the Quorum of the Twelve
The youth live in a time of great confusion. It has been 15 years since the Family Proclamation was given and things have disintegrated more. But God still intends for us to be happy. We have our agency, which Satan cannot forcefully take from us. The power of procreation is important and should be shared only between a husband and wife. Satan seeks to degrade us and pornography is like a plague. Some say unnatural behavior is okay, or that we can vote to alter what is right. But we cannot change God's moral standards. D&C 81: 10. Repentance and forgiveness are stronger than Satan; angels will coach you as you try to forgo sin.

Elder Jay E. Jensen, of the Seventy
Elder Jensen prayed for his own testimony while on his mission. The Holy Ghost helped him know God and Christ are real. The roles of the Holy Ghost include teach and testify, identifies what's good, and leads one to do good. While on a mission in Argentina his grandson died and he was comforted by the Holy Ghost. They wanted to be with family, but couldn't. President Hinckley taught that the Jesus Christ, the Holy Ghost, Book of Mormon, and the restoration are the four cornerstones of our faith. He compares Joseph Smith to Lehi.

Mary N. Cook, 1st Counselor in the Young Women Presidency
Sister Cook has a new granddaughter named Ruby. Her mother is starting today to teach her to be righteous. She is doing this by: first, being an example in faith (story of Lucy Mack Smith setting faithful example, which Joseph Smith followed) and second, being an example in purity (For the Strength of Youth Pamphlet teaches what we need to know, especially in relation to media and technology and dress). Sister Cook tells of the example of her Aunt Carma Cutler.

Elder Dallin H. Oaks, of the Quorum of the Twelve
We have two lines of communication with God:
1. Personal prayer: no mortal intermediary is required; it is through the Holy Spirit and is an essential part of God's plan because it allows each of us to gain a personal witness. Prayer is dependent on our personal worthiness and is important for personal and family guidance. Two warnings regarding prayer include:
a) In its fullness prayer is not independent of the priesthood line of communication. The Gift of the Holy Ghost and the sacrament both require priesthood.
b) One cannot communicate reliably through prayer if s/he is disobedient or out of harmony with the priesthood line.
2. Priesthood: is principally there to guide the Church and has additional intermediaries of Jesus Christ, the Church, and leaders. the restored priesthood is at the heart of the priesthood line, which is the same line spoken to us today. Living prophets hold the keys to the priesthood. Do not underestimate the importance of the Church or its blessings. Organized religion is essential for the perfecting of the saints. Two warnings regarding priesthood include:
a) Priesthood doesn't supersede prayer; do not rely on others in the priesthood line for your testimony.
b) One can't function fully or properly in the priesthood if not worthy or obedient.
Both prayer and priesthood are essential to God's plan (Moses 1:39). Jethro taught Moses to teach the people to use both lines of communication.

President Thomas S. Monson
President Monson's thoughts have turned to Christ and service. In Luke 17 is the story of the 10 lepers. Do we remember to give thanks for the blessings we receive? Gratitude helps us recognize our blessings. We should walk with the spirit of thanksgiving. President Monson tells the story of the feeding of 4,000; this miracle occurred after Christ gave thanks for the little food they did have. We should focus on our blessing instead of what we lack. Gratitude is a divine principle taught in the scriptures. We can lift ourselves by cultivating an attitude of gratitude. It is the greatest of all virtues and the parent of other virtues. A prayerful life is the key to developing gratitude. Do not take for granted those things that money cannot buy, especially people and loved ones. Frequently express love and gratitude to family. President Monson tells the story of Gordon Green and how the family took inventory of their farm on Thanksgiving. To live with gratitude in the heart is to touch heaven.

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