April 2014 184th General Conference Sunday morning session notes

President Eyring conducts

Choir sings “On This Day of Joy and Gladness”

Opening prayer L. Whitney Clayton

Choir sings “Let Us All Press On”

(Very powerful rendition of “Let Us All Press On”)

President Uchtdorf

How to comfort people in their trials?

They seeming to be concentrating on an ending. The end of hope, the end of hope of a relationship. We sometimes feel alone, frustrated or adrift. It can happen to everyone.

There is one thing we can do to make life sweeter, joyful and glorious. We can be grateful.

Some might say, “what do I have to be grateful for when my world is falling apart?”

Instead of being thankful for things, we need to be thankful in our circumstances no matter what they may be.

The choice is ours: we can limit our gratitude based on blessings we feel we lack, or we can be like Nephi on the ship to the Americas. Nephi looked to God and praised Him all day long. He did not murmur. We can be like Job, who had gratitude. The Mormon pioneers had a spirit of gratitude. Joseph Smith in Liberty jail: “stand still to see the salvation of God.”

Be grateful no matter what!

When we are grateful to God in our circumstances, we can experience gentle peace in the midst of tribulation. We can glory in Christ’s atonement.

Endings are not our destiny. We are eternal beings. Endings are not endings but interruptions that one day will seem small compared to the eternal joy awaiting the faithful. There are no true endings, only everlasting beginnings.

We have reason to be filled with gratitude regardless of the circumstances.

May we live in thanksgiving daily.

Elder Ballard

Describes meeting his wife Barbara Bowen. His mission taught him to be persistent, was eventually able to make a date, get married. Seven children.

No matter how good your message is, you may not be able to deliver it without followup.

Followup on two other talks. Should not refer to the Church as “The Mormon Church” or the “LDS Church.”
If we say we are “Mormons” we should also use the full name of the Church. We are Christians, members of the savior’s church. We belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

I encouraged members to pray to be led to at least one person for an invitation for missionary opportunities. Describes a brother who reached out to somebody on Facebook. The person was looking for change. We should invite and also follow up.

Member missionary work needs followup. Peter’s healing from the Bible.

Invite somebody at least 4x a year. Follow up our invitations. Take others by the hand, lift them up and help others.

All members should have a copy of Preach My Gospel. Can get it free on-line.

Told a great story about a kid from Argentina who invited people to their home to discuss the Church. The faith of the little boy was central. Primary children can be missionaries too.

Sister Jean A. Stevens, Primary presidency

Information on Sister Stevens: http://www.mormonnewsroom.org/leader-biographies/jean-a-stevens

A young boy walking along a road. She felt she should help him. Worried about a stranger talking to him. She had an impression, “go help that boy.” She drove back and asked. The boy said, “would you, I have been praying somebody would help me.”

The importance of following the Spirit.

Reconnected with the boy 25 years later. Derrick Nance married and had a family of his own. He has a foundation of faith that God answers our prayers. Derrick says that God was mindful of him. Derrick believes that God loved him enough to send help.

Our Father knows us and hears the pleadings of our hearts.

CS Lewis, “I pray because I can’t help myself…it doesn’t change God, it changes me.”

A family had only 48 hours together before the father died of cancer. They chose a family picture, a family dinner and a temple session. Because of the temple, they can be together forever. The mother said, “you can feel peace in the midst of turmoil.” Their daughter said, “we were surrounded by God’s love.”

(This is a very touching talk. I really felt the Spirit a lot during this talk. Thank you Sister Stevens).

We are not alone, you are not forgotten. God our father knows us personally.

Choir sings “Teach Me to Walk in the Light.”

Gary E. Stevenson, presiding bishop

Young men, young women and young single adults. A great sense of urgency in addressing you.

Tells story of one Olympic athlete who is Mormon. Skeleton. 90 mph down a hill. 2014 Olympics. Last two Olympics did not medal. Years of preparation had paid off. Silver medal. Wore her YW medallion on the stand.

Another guy, won bronze medal in four-man bobsled race. He crashed in 2010. Then in 2014, he won bronze.

Your pathway is similar: you are an eternal being, existed as a spirit, you are now performing. This life is your Olympics. Your actions will determine whether you win a medal and return to live with God.

Paul: “Run the race, so you may attain the prize.”

Make a list of ordinances for family members. This can help each member of a family along the covenant plan. Make an action plan.

LDS athlete snowboarder from Australia. Won a silver. Demonstrated Christ-like love to her competitors.

Find people who need your encouragement. Help others in their journeys.

Elder Bednar

Man wants a 4×4 pickup, says it will be needed if there is a storm and milk is needed. Wife says: if we buy the truck, we won’t have money for milk. Man decided to show the usefulness of the truck. Went into the mountains in a snow storm to cut wood. All four wheels spun in the snow. Got stuck. Started to cut wood. Filled the back of the truck with wood. Slowly the truck moved out of the snow onto the road. Went home, happy and humbled.

The load of wood provided the traction necessary.

It was the load that allowed him to return to his family.

We all carry a load. Demands and opportunities, afflictions and blessings. Assess your load: is the load you are carrying attracting the spiritual traction so you avoid getting stuck? We may believe happiness is the absence of the load. Bearing a load is a necessary part of the plan of happiness. Don’t haul around so many nice but necessary things that you are distracted from the Gospel.

The Savior’s yoke is easy, and his burden is light.

A burden made light. The burdens on Alma were made light. The Lord did strengthen them so they could bear the burdens with ease. Challenges were not removed, but they were strengthened.

The Lord desires to enliven us, to strengthen and heal us. The Savior suffered not just for our sins, but also for our physical pains and anguish, our fears and frustrations, our disappointments, our regrets and remorse.

There is no physical pain that the Savior did not experience first.

Choir sings “A Child’s Prayer.”

President Monson

Love all of God’s children. Love is the very essence of the Gospel. Jesus Christ is our exemplar.

At the end, Jesus said: “Father, forgive them for they know not what they do.”

Compassion and love.

Kindness, patience, selflessness, understanding, forgiveness. Our love will be shown in day to day interactions with one another.

(another great poem quoted by Pres. Monson)

“I have wept in the night
At my shortness of sight
That to others’ needs made me blind,
But I never have yet
Had a twinge of regret
For being a little too kind.”

― C.R. Gibson

Love should be the very heart of family life, but sometimes it is not. Too much impatience, too much arguing, too many fights, too many tears.

If we would keep the commandment to love one another, we would treat each other with kindness.

When have to use discipline, afterwards show an increase in love.

Let us not demean and belittle. Forgiveness should to hand in hand with love.

“Of all sad words of tongue or pen, the saddest are these: it might have been.”

Avoid regrets. Express love. A smile, a wave, a kind compliment. Show interest in another’s activities. Visiting one who is ill or homebound.

Because of God’s love, he sent his Son who loves us enough to give his life to us so we may have eternal life.

Choir: “Guide Us, Oh Thou Great Jehovah.”

Closing prayer: Neill F. Marriott
Second Counselor, Young Women General Presidency

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About Geoff B.

Geoff B graduated from Stanford University (class of 1985) and worked in journalism for several years until about 1992, when he took up his second career in telecommunications sales. He has held many callings in the Church, but his favorite calling is father and husband. Geoff is active in martial arts and loves hiking and skiing. Geoff has five children and lives in Colorado.

9 thoughts on “April 2014 184th General Conference Sunday morning session notes

  1. I really enjoy Uchtdor’f point that Gratitude needs to come even during our trials, but that it doesn’t mean we think our “bad” circumstances our good. He points out that we’re allowed to be honest about our circumstances, while still being grateful to God for the blessings we have.

  2. Are Pres Packer and Elder Perry still out? I can’t tell if there is one or two empty chairs from the long shots. I can’t remember the last time we didn’t hear all 15 speak at conference.

  3. I am pretty sure all seats were filled yesterday. I looked when the four new people were called to the stand, and all of the apostles were there (or more accurately all the seats were filled with somebody). Can’t speak for today. Been too busy typing.

  4. I just rewatched the video from the sustainings, and they didn’t show Pres. Packer or Elder Perry. We haven’t heard from those two and Elder Christiansen, but we’ve heard from the rest of the 12.

    The last time one of the 12 didn’t speak at General Conference was April 2011, when Elder Hales didn’t speak.

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