He said, “A loving Heavenly Father has plotted our course and provided an unfailing guide—even obedience. A knowledge of truth and the answers to our greatest questions come to us as we are obedient to the commandments of God.”
President Monson shared a story:
“When I was growing up, each summer from early July until early September my family stayed at our cabin at Vivian Park in
One of my best friends during those carefree days in the canyon was Danny Larsen, whose family also owned a cabin at Vivian Park. Each day he and I roamed this boy’s paradise, fishing in the stream and the river, collecting rocks and other treasures, hiking, climbing, and simply enjoying each minute of each hour of each day
One morning Danny and I decided we wanted to have a campfire that evening with all our canyon friends. We just needed to clear an area in a nearby field where we could all gather. The june grass which covered the field had become dry and prickly, making the field unsuitable for our purpose. We began to pull at the tall grass, planning to clear a large, circular area. We tugged and yanked with all our might, but all we could get were small handfuls of the stubborn weeds. We knew this task would take the entire day, and already our energy and enthusiasm were waning.
And then what I thought was the perfect solution came into my eight-year-old mind. I said to Danny, “All we need is to set these weeds on fire. We’ll just burn a circle in the weeks!” He readily agreed, and I ran to our cabin to get a few matches.
Lest any of you think that at the tender age of eight we were permitted to use matches. I want to make it clear that both Danny and I were forbidden to use them without adult supervision. Both of us had been warned repeatedly of the dangers of fire. However, I knew where my family kept matches, and we needed to clear that field. Without so much as a second thought, I ran to our cabin and grabbed a few matchsticks, making certain no one was watching. I hid them quickly in one of my pockets.
Back to Danny I ran, excited that in my pocket I had the solution to our problem. I recall thinking that the fire would burn only as far as we wanted and then would somehow magically extinguish itself.
I struck a match on a rock and set the parched june grass ablaze. It ignited as though it has been drenched in gasoline. At first Danny and I were thrilled as we watched the weeds disappear, but it soon became apparent that the fire was not about to go out on its own. We panicked as we realized there was nothing we could do to stop it. The menacing flames began to follow the wild grass up the mountainside, endangering the pine trees and everything else in their path.
Finally we had no option but to run for help. Soon all available men and women at Vivian Park were dashing back and forth with wet burlap bags, beating at the flames in an attempt to extinguish them. After several hours, the last remaining embers were smothered. The ages-old pine trees had been saved, as were the homes the flames would eventually have reached.
Danny and I learned several difficult but important lessons that day not the least of which was the importance of obedience.
There are rules and laws to help ensure our physical safety. Likewise, the Lord has provided guidelines and commandments to help ensure our spiritual safety so that we might successfully navigate this often treacherous moral existence and return to our Heavenly Father.”
Monson said, “The Savior demonstrated genuine love of God by living the perfect life, by honoring the sacred mission that was his. Never was He haughty. Never was He puffed up with pride. Never was He disloyal. Ever was He humble. Ever was He sincere. Ever was He obedient.”
Monson said, “As the Savior instructed His early Apostles, so He instructs you and me: ‘Follow thou me,’ Are we willing to obey?”
Monson delivered the concluding talk.
SUNDAY MORNING SESSION FIFTH SPEAKER
Elder L. Tom Perry of the Quorum of the Twelve talked about what he says is the importance of obedience.
“Secularism is becoming the norm, and many of its beliefs and practices are in direct conflict with those that were instituted by the Lord himself for the benefit of His children.”
Perry shared quotes from a note:
“In the universe, too, where God is in command, there is law—universal, eternal law—with certain blessings and immutable penalties.”
Perry said the final words of the note focus on obedience to God’s law:
“…if you with to return to your loves ones with head erect. . . if you would be a man and live abundantly—then observe God’s law. In so doing you can add to these priceless freedoms which you are struggling to preserve, another on which the others may well depend, freedom from sin; for truly ‘obedience to the law is liberty.’”
Perry shared 2 Nephi 2:27:
“Wherefore, men are free according to the flesh; and all things are given them which are expedient unto man. And they are free to choose liberty and eternal life, though the great Mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil: for he seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself.”
Perry said, six commandments are routinely dismissed:
-we certainly have “Other Gods” that we put before the true God
-we make idols of celebrities, of lifestyles, of wealth, and yes, sometimes of graven images or objects
-we use the name of god in profane ways
-we use the Sabbath day for our biggest games
-we treat sexual relations outside marriage as recreation and entertainment
-coveting has become a far too common way of life
SUNDAY MORNING SESSION FOURTH SPEAKER
Elder L. Whitney Clayton of the Presidency of the Seventy talked about marriage. He talked about he and his wife visiting the home of one of his sons and his wife and children for dinner.
He said after dinner his four-year-old granddaughter named Anna told him to, “Watch and learn” and then she danced and sang a song for him.
Clayton said, “Anna’s instruction to ‘watch and learn” was wisdom from the mouth of a babe. He used this story to teach the important of watching and learning from his observations about marriage.
First he said, “I have observed that in the happiest marriages both the husband and wife consider their relationship to be a pearl beyond price, a treasure of infinite worth.” He continued, “…the best marriage partners regard their marriages as priceless.”
Second he continued, “Successful marriages are built on the foundation of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and adherence to His teachings.” He said couples who put Christ first: attend sacrament and other meetings every week, hold family home evening, pray and study the scriptures together and as individuals, and pay an honest tithing.
Third he said repentance is important for strong marriages. “Spouses who regularly conduct honest self-examination and promptly take needed steps to repent and improve experience a healing balm in their marriages. Repentance helps restore and maintain harmony and peace.” He says humility is the essence of repentance. “It is selfless, not selfish. It doesn’t demand its own way or speak with moral superiority,” Clayton continued.
Fourth, he said respect is essential. “I have observed that in wonderful, happy marriages, husbands and wives teat each other as equal partners.”
Fifth is love. “The happiest marriages I have seen radiate obedience to one of the happiest commandments – that we ‘live together in love,’” Clayton said.
SUNDAY MORNING SESSION THIRD SPEAKER
Primary General President Sister Rosemary W. Wixom shared a story about a young father. “A young father recently learned of the passing of his extraordinary second-grade teacher. In memory of her, he wrote: Of all the feelings and experiences I remember, the feeling most prevalent in my mind is ‘comfort.’ She may have taught me spelling, grammar, and math, but far more importantly she taught me to love being a child. In her classroom, it was OK to spell a word wrong here and there; ‘We’ll work on it,’ she’s say. It was OK to spill or tear or smudge; ‘We’ll fix it and we’ll clean it up,’ she would respond. It was OK to try, OK to stretch, OK to dream, and OK to enjoy those pleasures that come from the insignificant things that only children find exciting.”
Wixom teaches one of the greatest influences a person can have in the world is to influence a child.
- Pray to know a child’s needs
- Disconnect and listen with love
- Write to persuade our children
SUNDAY MORNING SESSION SECOND SPEAKER
Elder Neil L. Andersen of the Quorum of the Twelve taught about the mortal life and ministry of Jesus Christ beginning with his birth, “A virgin mother, a new star, angels appearing to shepherds, the blind seeing, the lame to walk, angels in
He said the Church has:
- more than 65,000 missionaries
- more than 3000 stakes
- congregations in 189 of the 224 nations and territories of the world
SUNDAY MORNING SESSION FIRST SPEAKER
President Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the First Presidency delivered the first talk during the Sunday morning session of General Conference. He said, “… even though we may feel lost in the midst of our current circumstances, God promises the hope of His light—He promises to illuminate the way before us and show us the way out of darkness.”
President Uchtdorf shared a story about Jane, “From the time she was three years old, she was repeatedly beaten, belittled and abused. She was threatened and mocked.”
Uchtdorf said she learned how to stop feeling and had no hope of rescue until she found The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints at the age of 18. He says the found hope in the Church’s teachings.
“…she felt liberated from an environment of darkness and evil—free to enjoy the Savior’s sweet peace and miraculous healing” Ucthdorf said.
Uchtdorf said that desite her circumstances she turned away from hate and toward love.
Points in this talk:
-Light Cleaveth unto Light
-First, start where you are
-Second, turn your heart toward the Lord
-Third, walk in the light
-Light Overcomes Darkness
-Come to the Light
ABC 4 is reporting live online and tweeting highlights from General Conference this morning. Summaries of each talk will be posted to this website moments after each speaker concludes.