Monday, October 8, 2012

Prophetic priorities

A year or two ago, my Church's magazine for adults published an article in which one of the leaders suggested that if we profess to believe that the Church is led by prophets we should know something of what those prophets have said of late. In that spirit, I offer some of my personal notes about what prophets, as I see them, have said in the last two days. These notes are my own recollections about what was said, and constitute, no doubt, my own interpretation of what was said. Writing them down, however, has been useful for me in deciding how I might better live my faith and love my neighbor.

Elder Quentin L. Cook 
  • "And now behold, I say unto you, my brethren, if ye have experienced a change of heart, and if ye have felt to sing the song of redeeming love, I would ask, can ye feel so now?" (Alma 5:26)
  • The foundation of kindness and civility is built in our homes. 
  • Inadvertent exposure to pornography is very prevalent. Despite social outcry about drugs and other ills, there is not corresponding societal outcry about pornography. 
  • Parents must have the courage to filter media access for their children. Parents must have the courage to say "no."

Sis Ann Dibb 
(This one will be on t-shirts by the end of the day, no doubt, and with good reason; it's a good one.)
  • "I'm a Mormon. I know it. I live it. I love it."
  • With so many distractions, do we have the strength to focus on what matter most?

Pres Deiter F. Uchtdorf 
  • What might our regrets at the end of life?
  • We often wear our busyness as a badge of honor. Is it a sign of a superior life? Probably not.
  • With the click of a mouse, we can connect with thousands of friends, without every having to face a single one of them. 
  • How much time are we will to spend on trivial online things? If we fail to give our best selves to those who are most important to us, we will live to regret it.

Elder L. Tom Perry
  • Some core values are in danger of being lost, including the idea that marriage and family protect other virtues and values. 
  • The examples of parents are very powerful.
  • Parents must resolve that teaching in the home is the most sacred and solemn responsibility.
  • 5 things parents can do:
    • Pray for love and understanding of their children
    • Do many devotional things together: family time, scriptures, prayer, dinner
    • Communicate with those in the Church who have been called and set apart to work with our children.
    • Share testimony with children. Tell them and show them what we believe
    • Organize the family on clear, simple family rules. 
Elder M. Russell Ballard
  • Honey bees' magnificent obsession creates honey.
  • Each bee's lifetime contribution of a mere 1/12 of a teaspoon is vital tot he health of the hive.
  • What about our everyday activities? What would be the cumulative effect of small daily acts of human kindness?
  • There is one simply daily practice that can make a difference in the Church: in your morning prayer, ask Father to help you recognize and have the courage to act upon an opportunity to help someone. He answers others' prayers through you and me. 
Elder Neal A. Anderson
  • Our faith in Jesus Christ is often tested.
  • Our trials need not be spiritually fatal. They need not take us from our covenants or from God's church.
  • (There's much more to this talk. I was taking care of some minor domestic emergency during this talk.)
Elder Dallin H. Oaks
  • Children are highly vulnerable. They need others to speak for them. Adults must put children's needs ahead of their own selfish adult interests.
  • When children are denied birth, and when the birth rate is below replacement levels, cultures and nations are hollowed out and disappear. 
  • For children, the relative advantages of marriage matter!
Elder D. Todd Christofferson
  • Men & boys get conflicting and demeaning signals about what it means to be a man. Media portrayals of men constitute cultural emasculation. 
  • Men, be worthy models and help the rising generation become men. Teach them social skills, how to serve, how to be active, and how to pursue hobbies without becoming addicted.
  • "Rise up, O men of God"
Bishop Gary E. Stevenson
  • Young men: There will be times when you will have to demonstrate your courage in plain view of your peers. Other battles will be found on a silent, solitary battlefield in front of a screen. 
  • Digital peer pressure moves into our homes and into a child's bedroom via the internet. 
  • "To click, or not to click."
[That takes us mid-way through the priesthood session. More tomorrow, perhaps.]


Cliff Petersen said...

If you haven't already created a Kindle version of this most recent conference, I created one which you're welcome to use, as well as post on your blog if you want.

Clark Draney said...

Hi Cliff,

Excellent work! Thank you. Life's a bit hectic right now and I was worried about not really having time to make up a Kindle file for conference.

How kind of you to make it and to share. Thank you!

Clark Draney said...

Hi again Clint,

I just transferred the conference file to my device. It's beautifully put together. Very nice.

Thank you again.


Cliff Petersen said...

You're welcome! I started reading this on my Kindle and noticed that some stray code had caused the text to be underlined, from the footnotes in Sister Dibbs' talk, and clear to the end of conference. While not a huge annoyance, the underlining was bothering me, so I redid it and somehow managed to get ride of the underlining code after some trial and error. I replaced the dropbox version with the same name, so I believe the same link will still work.

Also, just curious, what program did you use to convert from mobi to azw? I looked at calibre and it seems to only do azw3.

Clark Draney said...

Hi Cliff,

Thanks! for the update. Wonderful work.

Converting to AZW is as simple as emailing the mobi file to my Amazon-provided kindle email. They do the conversion and email back the AZW file. Pretty slick!

Nice work. Thanks again.