Notes From Sunday Morning Session of General Conference

Opening Hymn: On This Day of Joy and Gladness (64)
Conducting: Henry B. Eyring

Dieter F. Uchtdorf (First Presidency)
Grief most often caused by an ending (relationship, death)
Others face grief by hope (marriage, children)
No one is immune to feeling alone.
There is one thing we can do to make life sweeter, even joyful, even glorious. We can be grateful.
We can give thanks to God.
A purifying drink of healing, peace, and understanding.
We are commanded to thank the Lord our God in all things.
Choosing to develop a spirit of gratitude will bring us true joy and great happiness.
It is important to frequently count our blessings.
The Lord does not expect us to be less thankful in times of trial.
Attitude of gratitude.
Seek gratitude as a disposition, a way of life that is independent of our current situation.
Instead of being thankful for things, be thankful in our circumstances.
The choice is ours to limit our gratitude or to give thanks in all things.
“I did look unto my God, and I did praise Him all the day long, and I did not murmur against the Lord because of my afflictions.” -Nephi
Glorify in the goodness of God.
When we are grateful to God we can experience gentle peace in the midst of tribulation.
We can experience the closeness and warmth of heaven’s embrace.
We should not be grateful just because our problems are resolved.
Be grateful in times of distress.
Through the eyes of faith we look beyond our present day challenges.
Trust God, and hope for things we may not see, which are true.
By being grateful we follow the example of Christ.
Trust that one day we will understand the trials of life.
Through the Atonement we can live forever with our loved ones.
Follow the example of the Apostles of old. They changed the world.
You do not need to see the Savior as the Apostles did to experience the same transformation.
There seems to be something inside of us that resists endings.
We are made of the stuff of eternities. We are eternal beings.
Endings are not our destiny. There are merely interruptions. Temporary pauses.
In Heavenly Father’s plan there are only everlasting beginnings.
Gratitude is a catalyst to all Christ-like attributes.
May we live in thanksgiving daily.

M Russell Ballard (Quorum of the Twelve)
No matter how good your message is, you may not delver it without persistent follow-up.
If we follow up the Lord will not let us down.
We should not refer to the Church by any other name than it’s official name.
Our official name underscores the fact that we are Christians.
Be a believer in the principle of follow-up.
Without a completed action, the commitment is hollow.
There is much more than simply extending invitations.
We can all be more consistently involved in missionary work by replacing fear with face.
Invite at least once a quarter (4 times a year).
All members obtain a copy of Preach My Gospel. Read it. Study it.
The Lord has given us another opportunity to assist Him in the great harvest of souls.
An extraordinary outpouring of grace will be ours when we bear testimony and invite others to Christ.
Our sins are forgiven as we bear testimony to others.
Primary children can be missionaries too.

Jean A. Stevens (Primary Presidency)
Our Father in Heaven reaches out for each of us with His infinite love.
As we develop greater trust and faith in the Lord we can access His power to deliver us.
God hears and answers our prayers.
God is watching over us. We are not alone.
The Lord has a plan to see us safely home.
He accomplishes his miracles one prayer at a time, one person at a time.
Prayer doesn’t change God. It changes me. -C.S. Lewis
Still today God’s power and love is manifest.
Live each day by putting your trust in God.
You can feel peace in the midst of turmoil.
The gospel is not a checklist. It lives in our hearts.
The gospel is not weight. It is wings. It carries us.
We can choose to reach for God’s hand in our need.
God our Father knows us personally and reaches out to help us.

Gary E. Stevenson (Presiding Bishop)
You are an eternal being.
This life is the time to prepare to meet God.
Run the race that you may obtain the prize.
Certain things are absolutely essential in this life.
Baptism, sacrament, temple ordinances, etc.
Keeping the commandments will qualify you to perform saving ordinances.
What do I need to do next? Whatever it may be, do it now.
Self-discipline in daily prayer and scripture study.
Never think that your time is up. The Atonement makes up for our imperfections.
It is never too late so long as the Master says there is time.
Make note of your family’s next ordinances.
Encourage others to do their best.
The time is now. This is our moment to perform.
With the Savior on our side, how can we fail?

David A. Bednar (Quorum of the Twelve)
It was the load. (fantastic story – truck stuck in snow. Freed from load of wood)
Each of us carries a load.
Is the load I am carrying producing the spiritual traction that will help me press forward?
Sometimes we may mistakenly believe that happiness is the absence of a load.
Don’t haul around things that distract from what matters most.
Making and keeping sacred covenants yokes us to the Lord.
Trust and pull your load with Him.
We are not and never need be alone.
With the help of the Savior we can pull with strength beyond our own.
The centrality of covenants with the promise of deliverance.
“My yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
The Atonement enables us to do good and become better in ways that stretch beyond our capacities.
The Atonement is for those striving to become better and serve more faithfully.
The Lord desires to enliven, strengthen, and heal us.
Alma 7:11-13
The Savior has suffered also for our physical pains, anguish, weakness, fears, etc. Everything.
There is nothing that we experience that the Savior did not experience first.
Because of His sacrifice He has perfect empathy.
Study pray, ponder and lean more about the Savior’s Atonement.
A heavy load is necessary to produce traction.
Pray for strength to learn from, change, or accept our circumstances.
Blessed with spiritual traction.
Today is the actual and accurate date of the Savior’s birth.

Thomas S. Monson (President)
We cannot truly love God if we do not love our fellow travelers on this mortal journey.
We are all spirit children of God. Brothers and sisters.
As we keep that in mind. Loving others will be easier.
Love is the very essence of the gospel. Jesus Christ is our exemplar.
You’ll never regret being kind to others.
One act of loving kindness can make all the difference.
Accept the opportunities each day to show love and kindness to others.
Those we meet are those God has given us to love and serve.
Opportunities to show our love come unexpectedly.
Charity is the pure love of Christ.
Some of our greatest opportunities to demonstrate our love with be in our own homes.
Love should be at the very heart of family life.
We must treat each other with kindness and respect.
If reproving be necessary, show afterwards an increase of love.
We must be careful that we do not destroy another person’s confidence.
Forgiveness should go hand in hand with love.
Blame keeps wounds open. Only forgiveness heals.
Avoid regrets by being kind to others.
Each of us has the power to increase the total of the world’s happiness.
Kindness may be cherished over a lifetime.
(President Monson always demonstrates the good in the world by the sources used for his talks.)

Closing Hymn: Guide Us, O Thou Great Jehovah (83)


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