General Conference Book Club Week 8: Elder Sitati

I know this will be a busy week, so I picked a short talk, but I wanted one that would help me focus on the things I should be most thankful for (in the spirit of Thanksgiving).  Elder Joseph W. Sitati gave his talk, “Blessings of the Gospel Available to All,” during the Sunday afternoon session of conference.  Did anyone else think it was as cool as I did to hear a General Authority from Africa speaking at General Conference?  My parents recently served a mission in South Africa, so I felt a connection to what he was referring to as the outpouring of the Lord upon the African nations.

His talk increases my testimony of the Lord’s hand spreading his church throughout the world, and it’s also a great historical/doctrinal summary of the building of the Lord’s kingdom.

God’s children on the earth today have the opportunity to understand His plan of happiness for them more fully than at any other time.”

You can read the talk here, watch it here, or listen to it here.  It’s also on page 103 of the November Ensign.  (Go here for GCBC information.)

As you read this talk, what blessings do you feel grateful for?  What blessings from the gospel have you seen in your family, or maybe even throughout the world?

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10 thoughts on “General Conference Book Club Week 8: Elder Sitati

  1. In reading his talk, I underlined single words of blessings that he mentioned. (There are even more that I didn’t list.) A whole sermon could be given from these topics that I am thankful for as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
    Keys of revelation
    Restoration
    Love of our Father in Heaven
    Exaltation
    Agency
    Gospel has gone forth
    Immortality and eternal life
    Fall of Adam
    Eternal covenant with God for salvation
    Noah (and other former great prophets)
    Earth will not be destroyed by flood again
    American continent
    Free from bondage
    Abrahamic covenant
    Resurrection
    Savior
    Gospel to Gentiles
    Keys of the priesthood
    Restoration
    Joseph Smith
    Living prophet
    Families
    Spirit of the Lord
    Daily prayer
    Scripture study
    Family home evening
    Temple marriage
    Thomas S. Monson
    I am so grateful for the many blessings mentioned. My mind is often incapable of understanding how truly blessed I am. Have a Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. I’m thankful that the Priesthood was finally given to all worthy men so that men like this could be brought into the Church and help build the kingdom. I’m glad that he could give a talk in Conference and represent the continent of Africa. I was struck with the idea he expressed about the Lord having an order and timetable for people of the nations of the world to be brought into the Church.

    300,000!!! And that is just the start.

  3. I really like Janice’s list. It helped me as I read this talk to look for thinks that I am grateful for this Thanksgiving season. What really hit my heart are the groups of people in which Elder Sitati describes. I love his description of Enoch but the parts that really made me stop to think was the second group and how they suffered the judgments of God. Leaving only one righteous family Noah’s. Noah made the choice to follow Enoch’s example, but yet his posterity did not. Elder Sitati states: “As Noah’s family multiplied and once more, many were taken up in wickedness. Driven by pride, they built the Tower of Babel. God allowed the judgments of heaven to fall upon them. Their language was confounded, and they were scattered abroad. Only a few who were obedient were preserved.”

    It is sad to think we have these wonderful examples to follow and many choose not too, but yet we have the gifts of agency, repentance, obedience and the examples of others so that we to can have eternal life just as Enoch.

  4. We’re going out of town tomorrow, so I doubt I’ll be able to read this talk and then come back and comment. But I do remember re-reading it, and thinking about all the simple things that we sometimes forget to think about and say thank you for.

    I’m very grateful for the stability I get from being a member of the Church. I don’t have to wonder how long my marriage is going to last. I don’t have to think twice about which movies to watch. There are so many little decisions I don’t have to think about, because I’ve already chosen! I’m grateful for that.

  5. I have been pondering about how it is essential that we do develop family traditions in order to have a “new celestial culture” in our homes. Sometimes this means breaking free of old traditions, like it mentioned in the talk. Sometimes it means treading new ground, especially if you are a new member of the church, or from a member family who did not practice certain family traditions. I thought about how we all need to support each other in our wards and even in our online community so we can all reap the benefits of having a celestial culture in our homes. This may mean inviting new member families to our homes for FHE or testifying how celestial family traditions has blessed our families etc.
    You’re are all right, we have a lot to be grateful for.

    • I thought it was so cool to realize as he went through the history of different peoples and dispensations, and then listed all of the blessings that were promised and revealed to them, that ALL those blessings are available to us now. And they are amazing.

      I also loved the connection to the parable of the laborers, and how it doesn’t matter what order different countries/peoples/generations receive the gospel; they will have full access to all the blessings it has to offer.

      Seriously, though, as I read through all these blessings, it’s obvious that the Lord was not playing around when He said : (D&C 84: 38)
      “And he that receiveth my Father receiveth my Father’s kingdom; therefore all that my Father hath shall be given unto him.”

      It’s all for the taking; what an awesome blessing to know that.

  6. Just wanted to comment and let you know I read this one too. I am sticking with you! 🙂

    My favorite part was the explanation of the parable of the laborers in the vineyard. I had never understood that story, and am grateful for the new insights. I also liked seeing the history of the world “condensed” in simple terms. I’ve studied all the independent “pieces” of history several times, but sometimes get confused when I try to put them together and see the big picture. That was very helpful for me. How blessed we are to live in this dispensation!

  7. I’ve lacked the energy and focus to comment, but I’m still reading. Love the list Janice–a great way to remember all we’ve been blessed with. I guess what has struck me thinking on this is how grateful I am for a family that has carried on some righteous traditions as an example to me. I am truly blessed, and so grateful to be able to establish some new traditions at our house. I need to incorporate the gratitude for all we’ve been blessed with in more of our traditions.
    Thanks for your comments everyone!

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