Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Fear and Knowledge

Elder Nattress shared with us a story of asking the brethren a question at an area meeting he attended. He asked them, "What can we teach the youth of this world, with everything going to crazy and spiriling downward?" {this question is paraphrased ... I didn't write down the exact question word for word}
After asking this question, Elder Hales stood {I believe that's who he said was there} and said, "I'd like to answer that questions. I would teach the youth to love their Savior; I would teach them who they are; and I would teach them about the sacrament."

I thought this quote was so amazing, because it immediately gave me three things to thing about in regards to my testimony of them and my ability to teach my own children someday about them. I wondered if my own testimony was strong enough to teach these concepts to my children so that they can be strong, and also so that I can be strong.

Then after sharing that thought from Elder Hales, Elder Nattress said:
"You'll never see fear in the eyes of the brethren because they know who they are and they know our Savior."

This is so powerful! I may not be an apostle and I know I have much to learn in this life, but this thought was so powerful to me and really made me realize just what a testimony of these two things alone does for a person. I don't want to be afraid of things going on in the world - I don't want to worry all the time about things I can't control. I know how I can combat that fear: faith. But this thought really helped me to understand just how faith keeps us from being afraid. If we have a strong testimony of our Savior and His mission & Atonement and we understand and have a testimony of our relationship to our Heavenly Father, then fear just won't be a part of who we are - just that alone strengthens me and helps me to not be afraid.

Key to Revelation

Elder Nattress shared this key to revelation with us from Elder David A. Bednar. This is something that really stuck with me and has still been sticking with me all week. Right after Elder Nattress shared this quote, I immediately felt prompted in knowing how I could apply this to my own life. I've followed that prompting all week and already I have felt the spirit stronger in my life.

"The key to receiving [personal] revelation is to 1), Sacrifice, and 2) Make a Covenant."
Elder Nattress, sharing the key to revelation from Elder Bednar
Stake Conference, 10/09

I'm so grateful for inspired counsel from our priesthood leaders and I have a testimony that when they give us a challenge and we follow through with that challenge, our spirituality will be strengthened, our lives and relationships will improve, and our overall happiness will grow.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Revelation and the Priesthood

"The spirit of revelation attends brethren who exercise their priesthood."
Elder Nattress
Stake Conference 10/09

Elder Nattress said this right after he gave all the brethren in attendance at that meeting the challenge to go home and give their wives a priesthood blessing. He talked about how important it is for the brethren in this church to exercise their priesthood righteously and help their wives by giving them blessings. I think it is good to be reminded, for both men and women, that the priesthood of God is not to be used lightly but that this power is on the earth to be used.

Family and Marriage Relationship

Elder K. Brett Nattress was the presiding authority at our Stake Conference this time. He shared so many wonderful insights and challenges with us. I loved hearing him speak each time he got up and I think I learned so much from him. It was truly inspired to have him at our conference.

In the Saturday evening session, Elder Nattress talked a little to us about families and our relationship with our spouse. These are a couple of the things he said:
  • Mothers in Zion bearing testimony to their children is the one bright shining hope. {This particular quote made me wonder, 'What does it take to be a Zion mother?' I'm not currently a mother, not even close really, but right now is when I can be preparing to be a mother. Hearing this segment of Elder Nattress's talk made me wonder what I should be doing in my life now to prepare to become a Zion mother someday. I don't think I have the answers but I think I'm gradually figuring it out.}
  • No matter what you do, your job or station in life, you will never rise above your relationship with your spouse.
  • Look to each other, only, first and always forever.
  • Serve one another. Give of yourself to your loved ones and you will grow to love them more.
  • Pray together. Small and simple thing are significant.
  • Your relationship is eternal. Never let anything or anyone come between you and your spouse.
Elder Nattress also talked a lot {both days} about Prophetic Patterns. Those things which the Brethren, the General Authorities and Apostles of the church always do that create righteous patterns in their lives, and how we can follow their examples in these patterns. One pattern Elder Nattress mentioned to us is how the Brethren approach all new things by asking these two questions:
  1. Will this strengthen my testimony of Jesus Christ?
  2. Will this strengthen my family?

I was glad to hear these two questions and learn more about this prophetic pattern. It is such a good way to be sure that we never allow things into our lives and families that will not answer affirmatively to both of those questions.

I always love hearing thoughts from the Brethren on what we should be doing in our families. It is one entity that is certainly under attack from Satan. I'm glad for the help we receive from our priesthood leaders to know how we can thwart the power of Satan and grow as strong family units. I hope that DH and I can always stay focused on the one thing that really matters: our family.

Monday Message: Lifting Burdens

This Mormon Messages clip is powerful. I invite you all to click over and watch the short clip - you will be uplifted!
Lifting Burdens

{I'm sorry you have to click the link - I couldn't find the embed code for the video.}

Sunday, October 25, 2009


"A little bit of faith goes a long way."
Sister in Stake Conference

This sister's story: She was introduced to the gospel while a teenager and developed a testimony of it. Her parents were very antagonistic towards the LDS church and told her that if she joined with them that she would no longer be welcome to live under their roof. After much deliberation and prayer, she finally decided that she had been given a testimony of the gospel, had felt the Spirit and knew that she should be baptized. She went against her parent's wishes and was baptized. Things were difficult for her but she doesn't regret her decision. She is now married and the mother of a beautiful baby boy.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Effort brings happiness

"Strong family relationships require effort, but this effort is what brings happiness now and forever."
Brother in Stake Conference

This brother's story: After being married civilly to his wife for a year, this brother was blessed to be able to take his wife to the temple and be sealed to her for time and all eternity. A couple short weeks later, they welcomed their first baby into this world.
As this brother shared his testimony of the importance of eternal families, my own testimony of strengthened of the temple and eternal families. I am so grateful that I have been sealed to my wonderful husband in God's Holy House and that we have the promises of forever together if we keep our covenants. This is a great source of comfort and peace in my life.

Stake Conference

A week ago,my DH and I attended our bi-annual stake conference. It was a very spiritual enlightening experience for me. The things I learned at that conference have stuck with me all week and DH and I have had many wonderful discussions from things we learned. I'm going to be sharing insights and personal thoughts from that conference. Unfortunately, I didn't always catch the names of speakers who were members of our stake so some of the things I share will be anonymous. A lot of this is to share how living my religion in my day-to-day activities helps me through my life and what kind of an impact it has on me.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Prophetic Patterns

At Stake Conference, we watched a short clip from the videa, "On the Lord's Errand" about President Thomas S. Monson. We watched the parts of the film where President Monson shares stories of going to conferences and taking time to help one person. One story is that President Monson is in the Pacific Islands {I believe?} attending a conference and he feels impressed to personally shake every child's hand. At first he feels that the time constraints won't allow for such a thing, but then the impression returns and he decides to do it. When he tells the local leader of his desire, the leader is grateful and says that the children were all so excited for an apostle of the Lord to come see them and they were told that if they each prayed very hard that Pres. Monson would greet each of them and shake their hands. By following the impression he received, President Monson answered the childrens' prayers and they learned that the Lord does hear and answer our prayers.
The other story we saw depicted in the film was of President Monson attending a conference somewhere here in the US {I wish I could remember where}. While he was there, the stake president asked Pres. Monson if he would be able to give a little girl who had been plagued with cancer a blessing. Of course he was willing but then decided against it when he learned that the girl and her family were 80 miles away and would be unable to attend any of the conference meetings - the schedule wouldn't allow it. The family of the girl was disappointed, as they had been praying that Elder Monson would be able to give this girl a blessing. Finally, at one point, Elder Monson heard in his mind this scripture, "Suffer the little children to come unto me," and he knew right away that he should go to that girl and give her the asked for priesthood blessing. They changed the conference schedule and he went, praying and fasting with the family to give her the blessing she needed. When he was there, this little girl said, "Oh! Brother Monson, I knew you would come." Only a few days later, the little girl died, but the family felt peace in her blessing and knowing that their prayers had been answered.

From these two stories, we learned about some Prophetic Patterns that help us to receive revelation:
  1. We must be willing to change plans and follow the spirit when it prompts us to do something
  2. Follow the spirit explicitly
  3. Trust in the Lord
  4. Be willing to serve {which begins in the home}
  5. Sacrifice for the one, as the Savior did in His ministry
  6. Fast and pray for what is desired
  7. Preparation of the Spirit - always be prepared for what is prompted
  8. Understand and apply the voice of the spirit {in {Presdent Monson's case, this was understanding the scripture that came to his mind}
  9. Be Perfectly obedient in following the counsel of our leaders
  10. Accept the will of the Lord - always be on he Lord's errand
These ten things seem like a lot, but I believe that the last one encompasses them all. If we are on the Lord's errand, we will follow Him, trust Him, do as we are asked, and prepare ourselves for what the spirit prompts us.

Weaknesses make us realize the Atonement

"When we are weak, then we are strong in the Lord. The Atonement is infinite but it is also the most personal gift we can ever be given."
Sister in Stake Conference

This sister's story: She had complications and difficulties with her second pregnancy. After the delivery she had severe pain in her hip and could barely walk. After months of talking to the doctors, they discovered that she had nerve damage in her hip, causing the pain and difficulty walking. She has been using a cane to walk for 11 months while waiting for the nerves to grow back and the pain to cease, all while attending school and raising two children.
After the conference, I reflected on this sisters story. I wondered if I was strong enough to trust in the Lord, even if I were put through that kind of pain. My testimony of Christ's Atonement was strengthened from hearing hers born and I hope that if I'm ever faced with such pain that I can learn to trust in my Savior and the comfort He's promised through His Atonement.

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Have the Holy Ghost

"When people are touched by the Spirit, they change right away. These changes bring us closer to, and help us become like, God. . . .
When the spirit attends us, we are in the presence of God."
President Chaffin
9th Stake

Monday, October 12, 2009

Monday Message

I read this post from Blissfully Domestic and loved it! The autor is so right, that it is all too easy to lose our perspective and not appreciate the love we have today. And I also believe she is right when she says that we should ask ourselves, "How much did I love my Heavenly Father today and show Him that love?" and by that question can we measure the success of our day.
Enjoy reading!