It’s a beautiful cool, but sunny Sunday morning here in the heart of California’s Central Coast–or as we like to say–just another dull day in Paradise. The Fourth Session of Conference is about to begin, and I’m enjoying the Choir’s singing on Music and the Spoken Word. It’s a very calm and peaceful way to begin such a Sunday morning. For ‘nacle discussions of this morning’s session, see Times and Seasons, and Mormon Mentality.
Choir: Mormon Tabernacle Choir
9:00 a.m. Choir: Guide Us O Thou Great Jehovah
9:02 a.m. Conducting President Gordon B. Hinckley, Prophet, Seer and Revelator
9:03 a.m. Choir O Thou Kind and Gracious Father
9:07 a.m. Invocation (Interesting he used the phrase to soften the hearts of those in a position to make a difference so that peace would be restored–I liked that)
9:09 a.m. Choir A Child’s Prayer
9:15 a.m. Henry B. Eyring, Second Counselor First Presidency
He began a diary when his children were very small, and wrote down what happened every day. I’m not giving you these experiences for yourself. Write them down–this was the instruction the Spirit gave to him so his children would read them in future generations and see the Hand of God in their lives. He did this for years daily, no matter how tired or late.
(This was a very disciplined practice–one I wish I had adopted–perhaps it’s not too late).
Living with the veil over our eyes we cannot remember living with God previously. Currently with reason alone we cannot see His hand in our earthly lives now. That can only happen through the Holy Ghost. Today it is too easy to forget God. It is easy to forget the blessings of a loving God. The hearts of the children of men are unsteady and false.
When God prospers his people with precious things, then is the time his Children harden their hearts and forget their God. This is because of the ease of their lives. How quick we are to be lifted up in pride. And, how slow we are to remember our God and walk in Wisdom’s paths.
At times it is easy to forget God when times are bad as well. It can be hard for the Holy Ghost to bring to our minds recollections of past blessings. But, there is a simple cure. Christ promised us this. It can be fulfilled for us now. The Comforter of the Holy Ghost will teach you all things and bring all things to your remembrance. The key is to receive the Holy Ghost as a companion. The Holy Ghost helps us to remember what God has done for us and others.
The pattern is to promise to always remember Christ, take His name upon us, and keep His commandments. The return promise of God is that we will have Christ’s spirit to be with us.
(I know this is true–and have seen it work in my own life)
Every person on earth has been given the Spirit of Christ to know good from evil. What persuades men to do evil it is of the devil, and we can know that with a perfect knowledge. If we are persuaded to do Good, we can know it is of God and Christ. So, even before people are baptized and receive the Gift of the Holy Ghost, they have the light of Christ in their lives.
The warm feelings we have had as we have listened to Truths spoken in conference are in fact from the Holy Ghost. Pray and ponder and ask if we have seen God’s hand in our lives. We should find ways to preserve these things in our lives. God does love and bless us, more than we recognize.
9:39 a.m. Quentin L. Cook, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
Was extended his new call only last Thursday evening. There have been sleepless nights and much prayer. But, he is comforted by the realization that President Hinckley is a Prophet of God. He rejoices in the opportunity to bear witness of Christ, even with his own mortal inadequacies. His heart is full appreciation for his family, and especially his wife. His children and their families have been a great comfort in their families. He was fortunate to have been reared in a loving and supportive family.
Served in the British Mission. The influence of a valiant Mission President is one of the miracles of the Restored Gospel. He attended law school at Stanford. The spirit told them to stay in CA, and serve there. He is grateful for the Church members there who influenced his life. His service as a Seventy has also been rewarding. He appreciates his brethren in that quorum as well. He love the general authorizes. He is grateful for the First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve and their devotion to Christ. Grateful for the Prophet Joseph Smith.
The world desperately needs the cool clear water of Christ’s Gospel. If we live a principal we will gain a testimony of that principal. Many are concerned about raising children, and increasing their faith.
Preach My Gospel published in 2004. Every member in the First Presidency and Quorum of the Twelve participated in that effort. It is a powerful manual. We need to live by faith and share the gospel with our friends and associates. We need to have faith in our callings and not be fearful.
9:45 a.m. Claudio R. M. Costa Presidency of the Quorum of the Seventy
(sorry, I had computer and internet problems during this talk.) It was good, and he spoke on the Family Proclamation.
9:55 a.m. Julie Beck, Relief Society President (missed part of this one too because of computer/internet issues)
Mothers who know! More than at anytime in this world we need mothers who know! Mothers who know desire to bear children. Prophets have declared God’s commandment to multiply and replenish the earth is still in force and effect. Children are our most precious jewels. Eternity is much longer than mortality. Mothers who know have influence and power. Mothers who know create a climate for spiritual growth in their homes. Latter-day Saint women should be the best home makers in the world. Nurturing mothers are knowledgable.
Mothers who know are leaders. They plan for prayer, scripture study, and home evening. They build children into leaders. Mothers who know are always teachers, not just babysitters. Mothers should consider their homes as a pre-missionary center. Mothers who know do less. They allow less media and distraction in their homes. They are willing to live on less and consume less to spend more time with their children.
(note, I’m certain President Beck is going to take flak for this talk from some in the Church, and particularly some who frequent the Bloggernacle. Frankly I liked it, and it was something that we needed to hear). (And, I was right. The onslaught and belittling has already begun. See here and here). (Further note–for different, and I think much more moderate and respectful reviews of President Beck’s talk, please see Kristine’s well done post over at BCC as well as Julie’s over at Times and Seasons and MCQ’s post here).
10:03 a.m. Choir I am A Child of God
10:05 a.m. Christoffel Golden Jr, First Quorum of the Seventy
By small and simple things are great things brought to pass. Observed this in a less active brother named Stan. He chose to remain outside Church activity. He showed little or no interest in the gospel. But, Stan did begin to warm to his home teachers. He began to ask them thoughtful questions.
Sacrament meeting is one of the most sacred and important meetings. Stan began to activate himself more in the Church, including attending Sacrament meeting. He then began to partake of the Sacrament again. We we partake of the Sacrament we become partakers in the Divine Gift. Stan became active and was then sealed in the Temple to his family.
When one reads the Book of Mormon you become filled with the Bread of Life, and the Waters of Life. The Book of Mormon has real power. As the Prophet Joseph stated: The Book of Mormon is the most correct on earth, and that one will get closer to God by reading it and any other.
May we discovery the power of daily prayer, and the power of the Book of Mormon.
10:13 a. m. David A. Bednar, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
Recalls fondly his mother reading Book of Mormon Stories to him
Christ’s visit to Nephites post Resurrection most powerful part of the Book of Mormon. He taught His gospel to them when he visited post Resurrection.
1. Repentance. Turn our heart and will to God. We need to renounce sin. We rely upon Grace of Christ. This is the sweet fruit of faith in Christ.
2. Come unto Christ. The multitude at the Temple came forward one by one to physically look and feel the nail prints in his hands and feet. He also taught the people to come unto him through covenants.
(still having posting problems on WordPress for some reason–I’m missing much of this talk as well).
The purpose of mortality is not just to see the sights of this world
We need to overcome the taint and tyranny of sin. We need to do good and become better.
We need to have clean hands and also a pure heart. Both are required to ascend the hill of the Lord and stand in His Holy place. Our hands can be clean by putting off the natural man. Hearts are purified as we receive His strengthing power to go good. The Atonement provides us a cleansing power.
Book of Mormon King Benjamin taught simple doctrine that caused the people to fall to the earth. They saw themselves as less than the dust of the earth. Have mercy and apply the atoning blood of Christ. We believe in Christ to created all things.
Forgiveness of sin, and a transformation of our nature took place here. These are two important things for our spiritual development. Clean hand and a pure heart should be our desires. Clean hands alone will not be enough when we stand before Christ.
We will not become perfect in this life. But, we can make progress toward our ultimate destiny. Small, steady, incremental spiritual improvements are what Christ wants us to make.
Requirement to put off natural man, to do and become good, have clean hands and a pure heart are recurring themes in the Book of Mormon. Deny ourselves of all ungodliness. Then will His Grace be sufficient for us. May we repent with sincerity of heart–that we may have clean hands and a pure heart to become holy and without spot.
10:27 a.m. Choir God So Loved The World
10:32 a.m. President Hinckley, Prophet, Seer and Revelator
Thanks to Choir for the beautiful music.
We live in an interesting phenomenon. The singer sings the same song, the orchestra the same music. But, a speaker is expected to come up with something new. He is going to repeat a prior talk–though.
The Church is nearly 13 million strong throughout the entire world. It is like the stone cut out of the mountain without hands. In 1823 Joseph Smith prayed for forgiveness of his light mindedness. Moroni appeared to him that night.
The prophet’s family were just ordinary people trying to get by with hard work. Yet, Moroni said Joseph’s name would be had for good or evil throughout the world. In 1830 the Church organized with only six members in an unknown village in New York. Today stakes and congregations are throughout virtually the entire world, including Russia and Mongolia.
This is only the beginning. The work will continue to grow and progress across the world. The Church is different from any other, and it’s doctrine different and distinct from any other as well. How remarkable was Joseph’s vision in 1820, of the Father and the Son. They both appeared because they were ushering in the final dispensation of the fullness of times, the final chapter in the long chronicle of God’s dealing with man upon the earth.
Has read the various creeds on the nature of the Godhead. He cannot understand them. Yet, in the 1820 vision, Joseph saw, and heard from God the Father and the Son. They were not imaginary beings, but were beings with bodies of flesh. We get a true understanding of deity from Joseph’s 1820 vision.
The Book of Mormon is here and available for everyone to read. The world must account for its orgins and message. The Book of Mormon is the only book ever published that carries the promise that those who read it can have the knowledge that it is true. Since its original publication 133,000,000 have been produced, 105 languages. Has been named one of the 20 most influential books in North America.
Critics have ridiculed the Book of Mormon. But, its influence continues stronger than ever. It has outlived its own critics.
The very validity of this Church lies on the reality of the First Vision. All these things are true. May God’s blessings be showered upon us all.
10:50 a.m. Choir How Firm a Foundation
10:55 a.m. Benediction