I know there has been some backlash from a few of the talks given at General Conference over the weekend, specifically the talk on the Family Proclamation given by Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the 12. I’ll just say this, it saddens me to see the level of vitriol aimed at him from those who preach tolerance and love ad nauseum. If you’ve engaged in this, stop it today. I came across this wise council from Elder David A. Bednar last night and it was very comforting to me.
“The Savior declared, “Whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is the same” (D&C 1:38). May we hear and heed the eternal truths taught by the Lord’s authorized representatives. As we do so, I promise our faith in Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ will be fortified, and we will receive spiritual guidance and protection for our specific circumstances and needs.”
There were things I heard from the Conference that have made me squirm in my seat a bit — but not because I thought the messenger was trying to be hateful or mean to me and my particular circumstance. It’s because I knew those words were true. Nephi teaches us in the Book of Mormon that the guilty take the truth to be hard. And we’re all guilty of something. I know there are areas I need to work on in my life. Change is hard — but I felt the nudge from this weekend. Giving up our ideas for God’s better ideas and way, is hard. It means sacrificing our wants and our agenda. It might mean finding new friends, living life differently and breaking old and comfortable habits. However, if we don’t do those things, we don’t grow and improve. That’s the whole point of this mortal existence — to grow, to improve, to learn, to come back to our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.
What Elder Bednar has said, is true, particularly this last part, “We will receive spiritual guidance and protection for our specific circumstances and needs” Hear, and heed — those are your action verbs! Then take it to the Lord. He does know you, and all of us, and will help us in a way that’s best for us. This is where we put faith into action and trust. The question of the day is this, “Dear Lord, how do I apply this council, from a prophet of God to my life? Please help me to go and do the things You have commanded.”
[This started out as a comment on facebook that I then expanded into a post there. I decided I could expand it a bit more and post it here as well].
BYUtv’s new sci-fi series (free on BYUtv’s app, no registration required) is, so far, pretty strong. It is not great (though it is fairly good). There is plenty to complain about if you want to go that route (the acting talent is uneven, the pacing is too slow at times, some shots linger a little too long, green screen backgrounds are a little too obvious, dialogue is occasionally on the nose), but given that this is a small, independent production with a limited budget from what is essentially a regional TV station, it exceeds expectations.Continue reading →
The final session of Sunday’s general conference included a very interesting talk by Elder Ballard in which he said the following:
“We need to embrace God’s children compassionately and eliminate any prejudice, including racism, sexism, and nationalism,” Elder Ballard said. “Let it be said that we truly believe — and truly live — the words of the Book of Mormon prophet Nephi: ‘(The Lord) inviteth … all to come unto him and partake of his goodness; and he denieth none that come unto him, black and white, bond and free, male and female … and all are alike unto God.'”
Eliminating racism and sexism are not controversial, and many Church talks over the years have emphasized these points. Elder Ballard’s was the second talk of this conference to discuss the evil of racism.
Eliminating nationalism, however, is not as common a subject. I did a search on lds.org, and there simply are not that many talks about nationalism.
Such a subject is controversial for many reasons. There are more latter-day Saints outside the U.S. than inside. Eliminating nationalism in the U.S. seems politically correct, especially in the days of the nationalist president Donald Trump, but what about eliminating Brazilian nationalism or Japanese nationalism or French nationalism?
Are the prophets saying that no latter-day Saints in these countries should have nationalist feelings? Should they not love their countries and have feelings of patriotism?