I just can’t proceed on my blog without pausing and recognizing General Conference. I’ll just mention three especially poignant moments for me.

I. Elder Holland’s talk moved me. If you didn’t get to see it I recommend either watching or listening to it because just reading it wouldn’t do it justice. Even disregarding the words he spoke (which ought not to be disregarded) the power he spoke with pierced me. I envy his personal conviction and admire his courage to speak openly and directly.

II. I was recently pondering on how some people have a gift for analogies. When I am most confused while reading C.S. Lewis he provides an analogy to clarify the point and really drive it home. Elder Bednar has a similar gift. I am all too familiar with frustrating attempts at teaching my children and having meaningful spiritual experiences with them. He compared our efforts to a painting, where each individual stroke is not impressive but altogether those strokes (in my case frustrating moments) come together to create something worthwhile.

III. And of course the words of my beloved prophet, President Thomas S. Monson. His plea for love and kindness left me feeling that above all else I need to improve, I need to provide more service and show more compassion. I’ve resolved to keep this poem he recited always in the back of my mind as I go about my busy life.

I have wept in the night
for the shortness of sight
that to somebody’s need made me blind;
But I never have yet
Felt a tinge of regret for
being a little to kind.

I’m obviously a little obsessed with the book Mere Christianity lately, but indulge me while I share one quote I read last night that was right to the tune of President Monson’s message.

“I do not believe one can settle how much [charity] we ought to give.
I am afraid the only safe rule is to give more than we can spare.
If our charities do no at all pinch or hamper us, I should say they are too small.”

I’m so grateful for President Monson’s gentle prodding and for his own life as an example of great service and love. And, of course, I am grateful for this bi-annual opportunity to listen to wise counsel and muster up the motivation to endure in good works and morality.

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