Sunday, January 9, 2011

Lesson Recap: Ward Conference

Today in Relief Society we heard from President Coe, President Brenda Hymas and President Lona Engle of the Stake Young Women and Relief Society presidencies. Here are a few of their thoughts.

President Coe spoke about Minster vs. Ministry. The first is about keys of the priesthood, the other is about love. All are called to the ministry.

What does it take to minister to others? Desire, inspiration from the Spirit, and acting right away on that thought and inspiration.

We learn from Ephesians 4: 26-32 that it matters day to day what you say, how you feel, the forgiveness you proffer, the kindness that edifies. These are all things we can do to minister to others.
26  Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:
27  Neither give place to the devil.
28  Let him that stole steal no more: but rather let him labour, working with his hands the thing which is good, that he may have to give to him that needeth.
29  Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.
30  And grieve not the holy Spirit of God, whereby ye are sealed unto the day of redemption.
31  Let all bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, be put away from you, with all malice:
32  And be ye kind one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake hath forgiven you.
Express love. Speak no evil. Do not judge. Forgive. Don't wait to act.

President Coe ended with this invitation, "Sisters, participate in the ministry. It is your right to do so."

Spiritual Independence
President Hymas compared spiritual independence to teaching her daughter to drive. There were manuals to read, and classes to take, but nothing could replace the experience she needed of actually driving, to discover for herself how to brake and accelerate and stay in her lane. This experience is first gained with her parents by her side.

We gain spiritual independence in the same way. The programs in the church guide us, the scriptures instruct us, and it's okay to rely on someone for a time. Eventually we gain independent testimonies after many experiences with the Spirit.

Helaman taught his sons where to get spiritual strength in their lives:
And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall. Helaman 5:12
Spiritual strength built on the rock of our Redeemer ensures that we will be able to weather the big storms or the long drizzling rain.

Truths that unite us
President Engle reminded us of a truth, that our first relationship with each other was as sisters in heaven. We made hard choices to together and taught one another. Today sharing beauty and truth, heart to heart, unites us.

She went on to talk about the truths she had learned in Primary, Young Women (MIA) and Relief Society that unite us regardless of age.

As a child she remembers the truths two missionaries taught her family about the plan of salvation. In Primary the gospel truths are taught in the simple songs that we remember easily, and that reverence is a feeling you have and it's not just holding still.

As Young Women we love being with friends, learning from the example of good leaders and earning that piece of jewelry by setting and achieving goals.

In Relief Society we learn that age doesn't matter, we share common burdens, we share a love for Christ, we're able to talk through our problems together, and that we need each other.

Relief Society is all those things, but more. It's purpose is to increase our faith, strengthen our families and provide relief to those in need. She left us with a promise: If you attend Relief Society you will have a better life.


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