Fall. Falling leaves. Chilly weather. Termination dust. Beginning of holiday season. School. Rain. Wind. Cooler weather. Indoor fires. Warmer clothes. The list goes on and on. The changing of seasons seems to act as a catalyst for changing in daily lives, reaffirming our goals and looking toward the future.
Our church recently had our biannual conference, General Conference, held in October and April. This conference is a catalyst for me, to listen to the speakers and make goals to work on over the next six months, over the next season of my life.
The weekend of General Conference was so filled with words of wisdom that I have selected only a few to share. I hope these quotes from some of the speakers will help you as they have helped me to ponder where I am in life and where I want to be. Dieter F. Uchtdorf talked about choices and a new guide for youth to help guide their choices.“To be very clear, the best guide you can possibly have for making choices is Jesus Christ.”
Dale G. Renlund taught about how we can listen and be guided by the Holy Spirit as we make decisions for ourselves and those who we have responsibility for. Tracy Y. Browning encouraged us to let the Savior be a compass and pilot while steering through life. “He would lift and serve, our eyes to see the world and each other as He does.” Hugo Montoya reminded us to live the two great commandments-loving God and love your neighbor.
Rafael E. Pino talked about “What is normal for some may be odd for others, depending on their customs and traditions.” He then asked us to think on the good traditions we have in our families and how those traditions can strengthen us to do better. Michelle D. Craig talked about faith and keeping going on the path of life. “I will seek His Spirit every day by doing the small and simple things. This is my path of discipleship.” Jeffrey R. Holland spoke of how we often have challenges we would probably not choose, “it would be tragic indeed if the weight of our challenges did not make us more empathetic for and more attentive to the burdens being carried by others.” Russell M. Nelson gave advice for how to survive in the chaotic world of today’s challenges. “You can overcome the spiritually and emotionally exhausting plagues of the world…Despite the distractions and distortions that swirl around us, you can find true rest—meaning relief and peace—even amid your most vexing problems…Each time you seek for and follow the promptings of the Spirit, each time you do anything good—things that “the natural man” would not do—you are overcoming the world.”
This October’s fall General Conference, gave me thought to think of goals and what I want to be, how I want to act, how I want to view my friends and family, how can I serve others, how I can improve, what goals can I work on for the future.
These are but a few of the many talks given in five sessions at the conference. (All the talks can be found online at churchofjesuschrist.org.) Whatever your beliefs are I hope you will take some time as this fall season changes and as we approach the Christmas season, to look at your life and set some goals that will help you become a better person and serve and appreciate our neighbors, families and friends.
• Donna Leigh is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in the Juneau Alaska Stake.“Living & Growing” is a weekly column written by different authors and submitted by local clergy and spiritual leaders. It appears every Friday on the Juneau Empire’s Faith page.