I went to the Women’s Conference that is a part of the General Conference held by the LDS Church(which if you’re not familiar with you can learn more about at lds.org.) with my Mom and it was actually pretty nice. I don’t always enjoy that sort of thing, because I often feel like I don’t quite fit in. But it was somehow different this time. I felt a warm sort of welcome, and like some of the messages were there just for me. I know that sounds kind of hoky, but there you go.
Here is an excerpt from President Uchtdorf’s talk, which I found particularly applicable to me.
We speak of obedience to God’s commandments.
We speak of living the gospel joyfully, with all our heart, might, mind, and soul.
And yet for some of us, obedience to God’s commandments doesn’t always feel very joyful. Let’s face it: there may be some that seem harder or less appealing—commandments that we approach with the enthusiasm of a child sitting before a plate of healthy but hated vegetables. We grit our teeth and force ourselves to comply so that we can move on to more desirable activities.
Perhaps during times such as these, we might find ourselves asking, “Do we really need to obey all of God’s commandments?”
My response to this question is simple:
I think God knows something we don’t—things that are beyond our capacity to comprehend! Our Father in Heaven is an eternal being whose experience, wisdom, and intelligence are infinitely greater than ours.4 Not only that, but He is also eternally loving, compassionate, and focused on one blessed goal: to bring to pass our immortality and eternal life.5
In other words, He not only knows what is best for you; He also anxiouslywants you to choose what is best for you.
If you believe this in your hearts—if you truly believe the great mission of our Heavenly Father is to exalt and glorify His children and that He knows best how to do it—doesn’t it make sense to embrace and follow His commandments, even the ones that appear difficult? Should we not cherish the light posts He has given that guide us through the darkness and the trials of mortality? They mark the way back to our heavenly home! By choosing Heavenly Father’s path, you lay a divine foundation for your personal progress as a daughter of God that will bless you throughout your life.
Part of our challenge is, I think, that we imagine that God has all of His blessings locked in a huge cloud up in heaven, refusing to give them to us unless we comply with some strict, paternalistic requirements He has set up. But the commandments aren’t like that at all. In reality, Heavenly Father is constantly raining blessings upon us. It is our fear, doubt, and sin that, like an umbrella, block these blessings from reaching us.
His commandments are the loving instructions and the divine help for us to close the umbrella so we can receive the shower of heavenly blessings.
We need to accept that the commandments of God aren’t just a long list of good ideas. They aren’t “life hacks” from an Internet blog or motivational quotes from a Pinterest board. They are divine counsel, based on eternal truths, given to bring “peace in this world, and eternal life in the world to come.”6
So we have a choice. On the one hand, there is the opinion of the world with its ever-changing theories and questionable motives. On the other hand, there is God’s word to His children—His eternal wisdom, His certain promises, and His loving instructions for returning to His presence in glory, love, and majesty.
The choice is yours!
The Creator of the seas, sands, and endless stars is reaching out to you this very day! He is offering the grand recipe for happiness, peace, and eternal life!
To qualify for these glorious blessings, you must humble yourself, exercise faith, take upon you the name of Christ, seek Him in word and deed, and resolutely “stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places.”7