Monday, 22 January 2007

Shameless blog abuse

Well, I have to give a talk in Sacrament Meeting this Sunday. I am supposed to speak on... anything. (Man, I HATE it when they don't give you a topic.) The bishop's only suggestion was that I use a conference talk - from any conference, ever - as my basis, and work from there.

So my questions for you ladies are: What's your favorite conference talk? Are there any General Authorities/topics/etc. etc. that you find particularly inspiring? Have you given a good Sacrament Meeting talk lately that you would like to send to me so that I can repeat it verbatim?


Alexandra said...

lol, Emma.

A woman in the Chicago branch (Allison Weiss) gave a talk last year in which she closed with the following excerpt from F. Enzio Busche's "The Truth is the Issue." When she read it - it was one of those moments that became seared into my memory - she brought each word to life, like each word was an expression directly from her soul, as though she immediately felt, was living, exactly what she was saying - ah! it was extraordinary!

Here it is:

"The issue is truth, my dear brothers and sisters, and the only way to find truth is through uncompromising self-education toward self-honesty to see the original “real me,” the child of God, in its innocence and potential in contrast to the influence from the other part of me, “the flesh,” with its selfish desires and foolishness. Only in that state of pure honesty are we able to see truth in its complete dimension. Honesty may not be everything, but everything is nothing without honesty. In its final state, honesty is a gift of the Spirit through which the true disciples of Christ feel the force to bear testimony of the truth in such a powerful way that it penetrates the very core of our existence.

Initiated by the hearing of the word of truth, a disciple of Christ is therefore constantly, even in the midst of all regular activities, striving all day long through silent prayer and contemplation to be in the depth of self-awareness to keep him in the state of meekness and lowliness of heart.

All learning leads to nothing unless it is centered on finding the roots of truth, which cannot be received without first becoming honest. In such striving, we suddenly know how to pray. Paul says, “For we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us” (Rom. 8:26).
Enlightened by the Spirit of truth, we will then be able to pray for the increased ability to endure truth and not to be made angry by it (see 2 Ne. 28:28). In the depth of such a prayer, we may finally be led to that lonesome place where we suddenly see ourselves naked in all soberness. Gone are all the little lies of self-defense. We see ourselves in our vanities and false hopes for carnal security. We are shocked to see our many deficiencies, our lack of gratitude for the smallest things. We are now at that sacred place that seemingly only a few have courage to enter, because this is that horrible place of unquenchable pain in fire and burning. This is that place where true repentance is born. This is that place where the conversion and the rebirth of the soul are happening. This is the place where the prophets were before they were called to serve. This is the place where converts find themselves before they can have the desire to be baptized for the remission of their sins. This is the place where sanctifications and rededications and renewal of covenants are happening. This is the place where suddenly the atonement of Christ is understood and embraced. This is the place where suddenly, when commitments have solemnly been established, the soul begins to “sing the song of redeeming love” and indestructible faith in Christ is born (Alma 5:26). This is the place where we suddenly see the heavens open as we feel the full impact of the love of our Heavenly Father, which fills us with indescribable joy. With this fulfillment of love in our hearts, we will never be happy anymore just by being ourselves or living our own lives. We will not be satisfied until we have surrendered our lives into the arms of the loving Christ, and until He has become the doer of all our deeds and He has become the speaker of all our words. As He has said,
“I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing” (John 15:5)."


Kathryn said...

The "Be ye therefore perfect" topic has recently come up in FHE lessons, talks and roommate chats. Elder Nelson's October 1995 address "Perfection Pending" classifies perfection into two categories: mortal perfection and eternal perfection--a great talk.

Nancy said...

Ahhh! The computer just lost my comment! Here's the abbreviated version... My suggestion is President Hinkley's talk on forgiveness a few years ago at General Conference. I really like his `let it go and forgive' message - I know that I can use that advice!