Friday, April 25, 2014

Your Four Minutes

A few weeks ago was General Conference. General Conference is a semiannual gathering of members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, held every April and October at the LDS Conference Center in Salt Lake City, Utah.  It is broadcast world wide so all the members can watch it.  It is where we get to hear the church leaders speak to the church as a whole. I always look forward to it. This year more then most. 

This year it meant more to me then ever before. Mainly because my faith has been tested a lot. Tested so much that at one point I felt abandoned by God. I was frustrated that things weren't going the way I wanted them too. In fact for a  while a felt so angry at God for the situations I was being put in I just didn't want to go to church. I never stopped believing in the church but I was upset and didn't want to sit through three hours of church when I felt so alone. Luckily this feeling didn't last long. Looking back it truly amazes me how different my life is when I live the principles of the Gospel every day. 

When I was struggling with my testimony I was struggling with myself really. I was mad that the plans I made for myself weren't following through as planned. I wanted someone to blame and I blamed God. I wish I could express how much I regret blaming God for my trials. Instead of it making me feel better I lost a connection to my Heavenly Father and Christ because I was being stubborn. 

It is crazy to me how much this conference was aimed right at things I needed to hear. I had prayed before listening to the talks that I would feel the spirit and that I would find guidance in the words spoken by the Church leaders. I was astounded how every single talk I was able to take something away from it. Sometimes it was a single phrase that spoke to me. Other times it was as if the  whole talk had been written just for me.  

My favorite talk was entitled "Your Four Minutes" by Bishop Gary E Stevenson. He first talked shared a story about athlete Noelle Pikus who competed in the 2014 Olympics competing in the skeleton. He said "Years of preparation would be considered either a success or a disappointment based on what happened in the space of four intense 60-second runs." Her Olympic success would be based on four minutes. 

He compared our life to these four minutes. With an eternal perspective our lives here on Earth are just four minutes. This life will go by in a blink of an eye. He talked about the basic things we do that will help us reach the goal which is eternal life. Simple things we sometimes to forget to do. Praying, going to church, reading our scriptures, etc. Sometimes is the simple stuff you will struggle most with. It was just the reminder I needed to adjust my life. 

It was a beautiful talk and I would encourage you to listen to it. 
My absolute favorite thing he said was "You have the Savior of the world on your side. If you seek His help and follow His directions, how can you fail?" For someone who had tried to shut myself off from my Savior because I was mad that hit me so hard. I was failing and miserable because instead of leaning on the Savior for help when I needed it I turned away from him. 

I am so grateful to be apart of this great Church and the knowledge that comes with it. I know with every fiber of my being that the Savior lives and that the Church is true. I know He suffered for my sins and then died for me and everyone else so that we can all live again with our Heavenly Father. While the trials in my life have been so hard I am so grateful for them. They have made me strong when I felt weak. The lessons I have learned from them have made the struggles worth it. 

This world is such a scary place right now and I am grateful for the Gospel that guides me be the best me possible. I know there is a living Prophet on the Earth and we heard from him and his apostles and church leaders during General Conference. I know the words they spoke were from our Heavenly Father. I love this Gospel so much and grateful to have such amazing examples of in my life to live up to.  I am so proud of my McKay and Shane who are serving mission right now. I know they are teaching the words of Christ. 

 McKay serving in Seattle Washington.

Shane serving in Malaga Spain.

I know the Church is true and I am so grateful for loving parents who raised me and my siblings with this knowledge. If you have questions about the LDS Church and want to learn more I encourage you to contact the missionaries in your area. I know they can answer any question you have. You can contact them here. Maybe Shane or McKay will be who you talk to. You can also find answers on the church website and listen the entire General Conference. 

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