Wow. Who loved conference? I did! On the mission, conference is one of the greatest experiences you can have. We call it the "mission superbowl" or because I´m in Brazil "O Copo do Mundo da Missão" (the world cup of the mission). I feel that in every way I arrived and left the conference as two completely different people. The Spirit has begun to speak to me more through my heart lately and I feel a fire burining there that hasn´t gone out since yesterday. I felt like I received revelation upon revelation and I cannot wait to review what I learned again and again in the Ensign.
While the experience of the week will relate to conference, I will begin with something that happened earlier in the week. We had the opportunity to do exchanges again. As I talked with one elder in particular about his experiences as a missionary he said "well, I´ve prayed a number of times about the church and every time I´ve had one of those feelings you just can´t deny. I know it´s true." But yet, there was a lack of excitement. There was a lack of action that I saw as I observed throughout the day. So, that´s the real question. What is the difference between testimony and conversion?
As we study the words of Elder Bednar from the October 2012 general conference we find that "knowing the gospel is true is the essence of a testimony. Consistently being true to the gospel is the essence of conversion." Therefore, a testimony should not simply be a knowldge of things as they really are, but a driving force to act in such a manner. This is where the introspection comes into play. Do I act according to the testimony I have of the gospel?
We had the opportunity this past week to hear the words of the prophet of God. He and the other men we ordain as prophets, seers, and revelators, gave us inspired instruction and direction for our lives. We heard a number of talks about obedience. President Uchtdorf spoke about gratitude in all things. President Monson, the prophet of God himself, spoke about increased kindness towards our bretheren. The list continues on and on. But here´s the key. We can know that these men are called and ordained of God and Jesus Christ themselves to lead and guide Their church today. We can know that the messages that they share are true by the power of the Holy Ghost. We can know where Kolob is and how to hie there. But how will any of these things help us if we don´t do anything with them? Do we simply have a testimony? Or are we truly convereted to the point that we act according to that testimony?
I, personally, received a very powerful witness of the truthfulness of the message that I share on a daily basis. More important Who, truly, is in charge of this church. And as I consider this fire burning in my heart, the real question that rings in my ears is "What am I going to do about it?" So we study, we read, and then we apply. Don´t just let conference pass by as a reason to watch church on TV. Use this in every way, shape, and form, to become better, greater, and happier than ever before. Turly, miracles occur in our lives when we follow the words of the living prophets.
I know without a doubt that Jesus Christ lives and is the head of His one true and living church upon the earth, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Thomos S. Monson is His chosen prophet in this day and age as were other prophets in generations of old. Joseph Smith saw Jesus Christ and God the Father in that grove in the Spring of 1820 and they have brought forth miracles in the land since that day by means of their chosen prophets. I know all this because the Book of Mormon is true. This is the knowledge which sustains me. But what will I do with it? I guess we´ll begin finding out this week.
Até o próximo!