A worldwide audience was reminded that the Lord’s blessings can be acquired through striving for simple improvement, including the desire to become a better person.
Elder Jeffery R. Holland, of the Quorum of the Twelve, concluded the 186th Annual General Conference by first expressing his love to those watching conference worldwide, “huddled around a family computer screen,” watching by TV or satellite, and to the 21,000 people gathered in the Conference Center.
“Brothers and Sisters, do you have any idea, do you have any notion or inkling whatsoever, of how much we love you? You are the miracle of this church and we love you,” he said.
He then emphasized the need to progress and improve through the “gift of the Atonement” and the “strength of heaven.”
“Even if we don’t always succeed, we get credit for trying,” Elder Holland said. “Remember, that the Lord blesses those that want to improve.”
Elder Holland warned members of the adversary and his desire to halt personal progression.
“He is a miserable man bound by eternal limitations and he wants us to be miserable, too,” he said. “Don’t fall for that. With the gift of the Atonement and the strength of heaven to help us, we can improve, and the great thing about the gospel is we get credit for trying, even if we don’t always succeed.”
While the first great commandment is to love God with all “our heart, might, mind and strength,” the first great truth is that “God loves his children” despite their flaws, according to Elder Holland.
“The Lord blesses those who want to improve, who accept the need for commandments and try to keep them,” he said.
He explained that it’s most important for people to keep trying each day, despite the opposition. Elder Holland advised viewers to extend day-by-day amounts of grace to those in need of love, which is the “foundation stone” of eternity.
“Keep loving. Keep trying. Keep trusting. Keep believing. Keep growing.”
Elder Holland reminded the audience that, through complete devotion and the Savior’s Atonement, they can escape the consequences of sin.
“If we give our heart to God, and do the best we can to live the gospel, then tomorrow and every other day is ultimately going to be magnificent,” Elder Holland said. “Even if we don’t always recognize it as such.”
He concluded by reminding church members that there is hope since, “heaven is cheering you on today, tomorrow and forever.”