Remembering past sessions of conference while preparing for the upcoming 185th Semiannual General Conference session can help members of the LDS Church recommit to a lifetime of becoming like the Savior.
“Those men and women who will speak to you have sought heaven’s help concerning the messages they will give,” said President Thomas S. Monson during the 183rd Semiannual Conference.
But simply hearing the word of God at conference is not enough for members, explained Elder Marvin J. Ashton, a former member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, during the October 1983 General Conference.
“True happiness is becoming something. This can be done by being committed to lofty goals. We cannot become something without commitment,” Ashton taught.
Church authorities have always used general conference to give members of the church commitments. Here are a number of key takeaways from General Conference in April 2015:
- Members should commit to filling their hearts and homes with the Savior’s light and truth in order to withstand in every circumstance.
- Members should commit to understanding the eternal significance of individual responsibility to teach truths about Heavenly Father’s plan for his family in the home.
- Members should commit to building the kingdom of God by standing up boldly and being defenders of marriage, parenthood and the home.
- Members should commit to using the Holy Ghost to help bear one another’s burdens and lift one another through fast offerings.
- Members should commit to using the Atonement and repenting.
- Members should commit to living worthy of the Spirit and making the gospel a part of daily life.
- Members should commit to building Christ-centered unity in wards and branches.
- Members should commit to attending the temple regularly.
- Members should commit to a deepened understanding of the Savior.
- Members should commit to seeking revelation on how to share the gospel with those who are in need of it.
- Members should commit to reverent Sabbath day observance.
Many BYU students have used these takeaways as an opportunity to make new commitments and follow the counsel of living prophets.
Azya Ladd, a linguistics major from Ahwatukee, Arizona said making a commitment to apply counsel given at conference puts someone in a better frame of mind to receive spiritual promptings and encourages spiritual progression.
“If you don’t keep commitments, how do you plan on moving forward?” Ladd said.
With conference less than a week away, members of the church have then opportunity to renew their commitments or make new ones.
President Lyle J. Stucki, former mission president of the Philippines, Manila mission, has encouraged Saints to review conference talks regularly. Stucki said the only way commitments are internalized is when they are reviewed frequently.
He recommended members to make it a goal to include conference talks as part of their personal study every day.
“It makes you feel so good and you want more of the blessing of being obedient,” Stucki said. “You become more enthusiastic and excited for general conference, and you feel an increased desire to learn.”
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