In Doctrine and Covenants 20:37, the Lord teaches us what it means to sow in the Spirit and what really places us in the Lord's territory, as follows: humble ourselves before God, come forth with broken hearts and contrite spirits, witness before the Church that we have truly repented of all our sins, take upon ourselves the name of Jesus Christ, have a determination to serve Him to the end, manifest by our works that we have received the Spirit of Christ, and be received by baptism into His Church. Our disposition to fulfill these covenants prepares us to live in God's presence as exalted beings. The remembrance of these covenants must guide our behavior in relation to our family, in our social interaction with other people, and especially in our relationship with the Savior.
Jesus Christ established the perfect behavior pattern by which we can build upon our attitudes to be able to fulfill these sacred covenants. The Savior banished from His life any influence that might take His focus away from His divine mission, especially when He was tempted by the enemy or by his followers while He ministered here on earth. Although He never sinned, He had a broken heart and a contrite spirit, full of love for our Heavenly Father and for all men. He humbled Himself before our Father in Heaven, denying His own will to fulfill what the Father had asked of Him in all things until the end. Even at that moment of extreme physical and spiritual pain, carrying the burden of the sins of all mankind on His shoulders and shedding blood through His pores, He told the Father, "Nevertheless not what I will, but what thou wilt" (Mark 14:36).
My prayer, brothers and sisters, as we think about our covenants is that we may keep ourselves strong against "the fiery darts of the adversary" (1 Nephi 15:24), following the Savior's example so that we may sow in the Spirit and abide in the Lord's territory. Let us remember President Monson's formula: "You can't be right by doing wrong; you can't be wrong by doing right."
- Ulisses Soares, “Abide in the Lord’s Territory!“, April 2012 General Conference
Dear young men of the Church, let me ask you a question that I hope you will carry in your heart for the rest of your life. What greater power can you acquire on earth than the priesthood of God? What power could possibly be greater than the capacity to assist our Heavenly Father in changing the lives of your fellowmen, to help them along the pathway of eternal happiness by being cleansed of sin and wrongdoing?
Like any other power, the priesthood needs to be exercised to accomplish any good. You are called to "arise and shine forth" (D&C 115:5), not to hide your light in darkness. Only those who are brave will be counted among the chosen. As you exercise the power of your sacred priesthood, your courage and confidence will increase. Young men, you know that you are at your best when you are in the service of God. You know that you are happiest when you are anxiously engaged in a good work. Magnify the power of your priesthood by being clean and being worthy.
I add my voice to the call Elder Jeffrey R. Holland made to you six months ago from this pulpit. "I am looking," he said, "for men young and old who care enough about this battle between good and evil to sign on and speak up. We are at war." He continued, "... I ask for a stronger and more devoted voice, a voice not only against evil ... , but a voice for good, a voice for the gospel, a voice for God" ("We Are All Enlisted," Liahona andEnsign, Nov. 2011, 44, 47).
Yes, Aaronic Priesthood holders, we are at war. And in this war, the best way to defend against evil is to actively promote righteousness. You cannot listen to foul words and pretend you don't hear. You cannot watch, alone or with others, images you know are filthy and pretend you don't see. You cannot touch any unclean thing and pretend it's no big deal. You cannot be passive when Satan seeks to destroy that which is wholesome and pure. Instead, stand up boldly for what you know is true! When you hear or see anything that violates the Lord's standards, remember who you are--a soldier in the army of God Himself, empowered with His holy priesthood. There is no better weapon against the enemy, the father of lies, than the truth that will come out of your mouth as you exercise the power of the priesthood. Most of your peers will respect you for your courage and your integrity. Some will not. But that doesn't matter. You will gain the respect and trust of Heavenly Father because you used His power to accomplish His purposes.
I call on every Aaronic Priesthood quorum presidency to once again raise the title of liberty and organize and lead your battalions. Utilize your priesthood power by inviting those around you to come unto Christ through repentance and baptism. You have the mandate and power of Heavenly Father to do it.
-Adrian Ochoa, “Aaronic Priesthood: Arise and Use the Power of God“, April 2012 General Conference
In the general Relief Society meeting of September 2006, President Gordon B. Hinckley related an experience shared by a divorced single mother of seven children then ranging in ages from 7 to 16. She had gone across the street to deliver something to a neighbor. She said:
"As I turned around to walk back home, I could see my house lighted up. I could hear echoes of my children as I had walked out of the door a few minutes earlier. They were saying: 'Mom, what are we going to have for dinner?' 'Can you take me to the library?' 'I have to get some poster paper tonight.' Tired and weary, I looked at that house and saw the light on in each of the rooms. I thought of all of those children who were home waiting for me to come and meet their needs. My burdens felt heavier than I could bear.
"I remember looking through tears toward the sky, and I said, 'Dear Father, I just can't do it tonight. I'm too tired. I can't face it. I can't go home and take care of all those children alone. Could I just come to You and stay with You for just one night? ...'
"I didn't really hear the words of reply, but I heard them in my mind. The answer was: 'No, little one, you can't come to me now. ... But I can come to you.'"2
Thank you, sisters, for all that you are doing to raise your family and maintain a loving home where there is goodness, peace, and opportunity.
Although you often feel alone, in truth you are never totally on your own. As you move forward in patience and in faith, Providence will move with you; heaven will bestow its needful blessings.
Your perspective and view of life will change when, rather than being cast down, you look up.
Many of you have already discovered the great, transforming truth that when you live to lift the burdens of others, your own burdens become lighter. Although circumstances may not have changed, your attitude has. You are able to face your own trials with greater acceptance, a more understanding heart, and deeper gratitude for what you have, rather than pining for what you yet lack.
You have discovered that when we extend lines of hopeful credit to those whose life accounts seem empty, our own coffers of consolation are enriched and made full; our cup truly "runneth over" (Psalm 23:5).
- David S. Baxter, “Faith, Fortitude, Fulfillment: A Message to Single Parents“, April 2012 General Conference
We are the children of God, literally. That being the case, God’s word should be uppermost in our minds in trying to bring about worth-while government. Until we as a people in particular, and the sons and daughters of God in general, realize that our civil governments will be failures so long as they are not based upon divine guidance, so long will we continue to have strife, conflict, and bloodshed. - Joseph F. Smith, Conference Report, October 1943, Evening Meeting, p.77
Spiritual nutrients, which keep us spiritually healthy, can lose their potency and strength if we do not live worthy of the divine guidance we need. The Savior has told us: “Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.” We need to keep our minds and bodies clean from all forms of addiction and pollution. We would never choose to eat spoiled or contaminated food. In the same selective way, we should be careful not to read or view anything that is not in good taste. Much of the spiritual pollution that comes into our lives comes through the Internet, computer games, television shows and movies that are highly suggestive of or graphically portray humanity’s baser attributes. Because we live in such an environment, we need to increase our spiritual strength. - James E. Faust, “Spiritual Nutrients,” Ensign, (CR) October 2006
Look closely at Paul's counsel: "Continue in faith," he said, issuing a charge to be strong in your testimony, be steadfast, press forward. "Grounded and settled," he said, which suggests putting your roots down in good gospel ground, hold on, be secure, grow strong. "Be not moved away from the hope of the gospel," he cautioned, for it is the hope of the gospel that keeps circumstances, trials, disappointments, and daily experiences in proper perspective. The hope of the gospel includes the promise of peace and comfort from the Holy Ghost. Many distractions or even slight variations draw us away from the important work we have been placed on earth to do. And soon the hope of the gospel, so necessary in our eternal progression, is set aside to allow for the immediate matters of today. - Elaine L. Jack, “Grounded, Settled, and Full of Hope,” Ensign, March 1996
"In all their afflictions he was afflicted. And the angel of his presence saved them, and in his love, and in his pity, he redeemed them, and bore them, and carried them all the days of old" (D&C 133:52-53).
It seems evident that the Lord is afflicted each time we are afflicted, that he will send angels to help us, and that in his love he helps us daily, whether we know it or not. How our hearts ought to be drawn out in gratitude for the grace of the Father and the Son! - Gene R. Cook, “The Grace of the Lord,” New Era, December 1988
Who is it that whispers so subtly in our ear that a gift given to another somehow diminishes the blessings we have received? Who makes us feel that if God is smiling on another, then He surely must somehow be frowning on us? You and I both know who does this--it is the father of all lies. It is Lucifer, our common enemy, whose cry down through the corridors of time is always and to everyone, "Give me thine honor." - Jeffrey R. Holland, “The Other Prodigal,” Liahona, July 2002
I remember reading a poster once that said, "A ship in a harbor is safe, but that is not what ships are made for." I think that applies to our lives. We may pass through troubled times, but if we constantly seek nothing but physical security, we're probably not doing what we should. We need to seek the spiritual security of knowing we are doing the Lord's will. Sometimes that will not give us all the physical security we may desire, but it will give us all we need. - John H. Groberg, “What Are You Doing Here?” Ensign, January 1987
We are promised great blessings in this life also, if we will study and live the word of the Lord. Here are just a few of the blessings we may receive:
1. Power to live righteously2. Power to overcome evil3. Power to change the heart and attitude4. Increase in hope and joy5. Increase in knowledge and understanding6. Increase in testimony
Jay E. Jensen, “Promises,” Friend, August 1995