the last couple of days i have been thinking about General Conference and how excited i am for it this weekend. this little video made all the hairs on my arm stand today when i watched it. i love the spirit of Conference.
it's always funny to me how a few weeks before it's Conference time, i start to feel my soul a little hungry for a spiritual boost. it always comes at such a perfect time.
back when i was in college (i can't believe i'm old enough to say stuff like that- but i've been graduated from college for 5 years now. nuts, i tell you!) i took a couple of classes from Lloyd Newell, the voice of the Spoken Word. he is an awesome professor- and the way i know that is that things that i learned in his classes still resonate in my mind. i couldn't say the same about a Econ 110 or Astronomy 200. such lame-sauce classes. anyway, back to Lloyd Newell. my favorite class of his that i took was called "Teachings of the Living Prophets." we studied each of the apostles' and members of the first presidency's lives in detail throughout the semester. i loved it. it really helped me gain a unique appreciation and understanding of how much these men have sacrificed for our church. they were all successful and wise in their professions. they all have families who they love dearly. they all are scholarly and intellectual. and yet they always put God first in their lives, no matter what. it's amazing.
my favorite part of the class was during conference time. i remember clearly one lesson in particular before Conference. Professor Newell said to us, "i want to make a suggestion to each of you. i want you to take a question that you may be pondering over in your life right now. it doesn't have to be related to church- but something that might be troubling you and that you are struggling with. whatever it is, pray about it, and ask Heavenly Father each day from now until conference to help receive an answer to this question through one of the living prophets." and then he made a pretty steep promise: "i promise you, if you pray and ask these questions in faith, he will answer them during Conference."
and so i followed his counsel. i went to Conference with a specific question that i had been praying about. honestly, i can't remember what the question was anymore. but i do remember this: my question was answered.
this has stuck with me for the past 8 years. and every time i have followed his advice, i have found answers in ways that i haven't found anywhere else. i have to tell you: i have brought some pretty crazy questions to Conference! and i'd wonder how in the world i'd find an answer to it there (one even about potty training!). sometimes it isn't so much through the words the prophets are saying, but thoughts that come into my mind as i am doing my best to listen. i know it sounds nuts- but it works. and i believe in it. and i think it is one of the reasons i have come to love General Conference so much. i mean, don't you think Heavenly Father is worried about the littlest details in our lives? especially things that may be causing us worry and stress- even if it is potty-training related? i know He is. He loves each and every one of us and wants us to make it home to Him- and will do all He can do help us get there- even if it's to give us a tip on how to not lose our marbles with a constipated child. we just have to be willing to ask the questions, and then put ourselves in the spiritually charged places (like Conference) where we can really listen and receive answers.
ahhhh, i can't wait for it- especially since it also means a plethora of good eats and a break from the sometimes-daunting task of regular Sunday duties. yes yes, General Conference is grand.