Guest Post: Why I listen to General Conference

Imagine if you knew God were going to come down and give us a message—think “Ten Commandments” style, burning bush and all.  I would want to see it.  If I knew where it was and had the option, I would want to be there.  That would be an amazing experience, don’t you think?  This past weekend, millions of Mormons in 197 countries spent 10 hours listening to messages from the Prophet, Apostles, and other leaders of the church translated into 95 different languages.  For me, it’s just as significant as God talking to Moses and then Moses telling me.  That’s the power of having a living prophet on the earth today—he speaks the will of God for us in our day.

So what messages did we hear this weekend?  Topics included forgiveness, receiving spiritual strength, finding happiness in family life, the power of the Bible and the Book of Mormon to strengthen our families, the blessings of women in our lives, and struggling with depression—messages that are timely and necessary for us in our day today, messages that are different from the messages Moses had for his people, but all congruent with the gospel of Jesus Christ.

Dieter F. Uchtdorf, told the story of a couple explaining why members would want to spend their entire weekend every 6 months listening to 10 hours of talks–“Why would anyone ever want to join such a church?”    There are many reasons, but the answer they gave was threefold:

1)      This church was restored by Jesus Christ himself.

2)      Opportunities for doing good–believing in God is commendable, but most people want to do more.  They want to put their faith into practice.

3)      Walking the path of discipleship leads to precious blessings.  Our daily walk of discipleship leads to peace and purpose in this life.

He continues to talk about how to address our questions and doubts—I’d encourage you to listen to his answer which you can find here.  Click next to his name, the last one in the Saturday Morning Session.

For me, these talks which are part of General Conference, are a chance to hear the messages that God has prepared for me.  There are times where I laugh, many times where I’m brought to tears, and times when I’m moved to do better.  But most of all, I listen because I know that I will again feel the witness that I’ve received that God and Jesus Christ are real and that this is their gospel.   And for that witness, I am truly grateful.