GCBC Week 3: “Personal Revelation and Testimony” by Sister Barbara Thompson

In April 2011, Sister Julie Beck said, “The ability to qualify for, receive, and act on personal revelation is the single most important skill that can be acquired in this life.”  This is a theme that Sister Barbara Thompson builds upon in her talk.

Personal Revelation and Testimony by Sister Barbara Thompson

I really enjoyed going back and reading her talk; I found it deeper than I had remembered it.  I liked her emphasis that revelation can come in many different ways and really depends upon our willingness to recieve it and live worthy of it.  I also loved this important reminder after the story about the WWII sister whose “testimony kept [her]”:

“Because we have a strong testimony doesn’t mean it will always remain that way. We must nourish and strengthen it in order that it will have sufficient power to sustain us.”

What are your thoughts after studying this talk?  Please share your insights in the comments.

To anyone who is checking out GCBC for the first time, the goal is to read one General Conference talk a week and discuss it together as an on-line “book club.”  If you want more information about how it works, go here.  And then join us.

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GCBC Week 15: “The Spirit of Revelation” by Elder David A. Bednar

One of the things I love about Elder Bednar is how he takes gospel principles and breaks them down into really digestible steps or categories.  This approach makes the application of those principles seem much more manageable or understandable.  He’s a great teacher that way.  In this particular talk, he analyzes the nuances of receiving revelation through the Holy Ghost.

“The Spirit of Revelation” by Elder David A. Bednar

Some of my favorite quotes were these:

“These tools of the adversary can impair and eventually destroy our capacity to recognize and respond to the subtle messages from God delivered by the power of His Spirit. Each of us should consider seriously and ponder prayerfully how we can reject the devil’s enticements and righteously “apply unto it,” even the spirit of revelation, in our personal lives and families.”

“We frequently may press forward hoping and praying—but without absolute assurance—that we are acting in accordance with God’s will. But as we honor our covenants and keep the commandments, as we strive ever more consistently to do good and to become better, we can walk with the confidence that God will guide our steps.”

What parts of his message stood out most to you?  Did he help you better understand your own experiences with revelation?  Share your thoughts in the comments below.  If this is your first visit to GCBC, visit here to learn more about it and join the fun.

ROLL CALL:  We’re a little more than halfway through all the talks since April’s general conference.  It’s typical that by now, some of our participants and comments are starting to dwindle off.  It’s a busy time of year and easy to lose momentum.  I’m curious to know who is still “playing along” in GCBC, even if you’re not commenting.  If you’re still reading the talks with us, say hi in the comments just so we can all get a better sense of GCBC community.  And if you haven’t been and want to start now, or recommit, this is your chance, too.  The more, the merrier.

GCBC Week 8: “Guided by the Holy Spirit” by President Boyd K. Packer

Elder Packer’s talk was a talk about revelation, but what stood out the most to me about his message was the importance of letting our offenses go, of forgiving and moving on.  This week for General Conference Book Club, we’ll be studying his conference talk:

“Guided by the Holy Spirit” by President Boyd K. Packer

What about you? What stood out to you as you read?  What’s your take-away message from this talk?  Share your thoughts and conversation in the comment thread below.  If you’re new to GCBC, check out the club here.

General Conference Book Club Week 19: Elder Scott and President Packer

To ensure we get through all the talks before the next General Conference (which, by the way, is in SEVEN weeks!), I decided to double up some of the messages.  These two seemed like a good pairing to study together, with a common theme of receiving spiritual answers and direction.

Elder Richard G. Scott gave a talk in the Saturday morning session called To Acquire Spiritual Guidance,” where he teaches that guidance will be gained “by careful practice, through the application of correct principles, and by being sensitive to the feelings that come.”

In President Boyd K. Packer’s talk from the Saturday afternoon session, Prayer and Promptings,” he asserts that both these communications are still available to all of God’s children.  He says, “You can know the things you need to know. Pray that you will learn to receive that inspiration and remain worthy to receive it.”

I’m looking forward to studying the two talks together and finding the common threads.  Simply the fact that two talks on a very similar topic were given in Conference on the same day is an alert that it was a principle worth addressing.  What do you think the “action items” for these talks are?  What are these brethren both trying to encourage us to do more/do better?

You can find both the audio and video versions of these talks here.

General Conference Book Club Week 10: Sister Matsumori

Okay, back online.  (Insert MoTab singing Hallelujiah Chorus here.)

This week’s talk, Helping Others Recognize the Whisperings of the Spiritwas given by Sister Vicki F. Matsumori during the Saturday morning session of General Conference.  I really liked this talk when I heard it because, as a mother, I feel like this is one of my greatest responsibilities– to teach my kids what to listen to when I’m not around to teach them or influence them.  Anyway, there’s some great stuff in here that reminds me how to teach, but also how to keep myself in line.

“We can help others become more familiar with the promptings of the Spirit when we share our testimony of the influence of the Holy Ghost in our lives.”

“One reason we are encouraged to pray and read the scriptures every single day is that both of these activities invite the Spirit into our homes and into the lives of our family members.”

“When we come to understand the whisperings of the Spirit, we will be able to hear Him teach us …”

You can read the talk here, listen to it here, or watch it here.  It’s also on page 70 of the November Ensign.  (Go here for GCBC information.)

Thanks to those of you who already commented about this talk on the previous post.  Rest assured your insights have been read, but feel free to cut and paste them into this post if you want them to be part of the comment thread.