In the Sunday afternoon session of conference, Elder Erich W. Kopischke of the Seventy spoke of how being accepted by loved ones is a basic human need.
"Being accepted by good people motivates us," he said. "It increases our sense of self-worth and self confidence."
He cautioned that those who don't find acceptance from desirable sources often seek it elsewhere. This can be from false friends, clothing, position or status. Elder Kopischke warned, "Seeking acceptance from the wrong sources or for incorrect reasons puts us on a dangerous path — one that is likely to lead us astray and even to destruction."
He counseled members to seek the Lord's acceptance by following the pattern He gave through the prophet Joseph Smith. It includes three main points.
1. Know that our hearts are honest and broken.
"How do we know that? We begin by engaging in self-reflection. ...As we sincerely and prayerfully ponder the extent to which our hearts are honest and broken, we will be taught by the Holy Ghost."
2. Know that our spirits are contrite.
He said that a contrite spirit is one willing and determined to act. He added, "We are willing to humble ourselves before God, willing to repent, willing to learn and willing to change. We are willing to pray, 'Not my will, but thine, be done.'"
3. Be willing to observe our covenants by sacrifice as commanded by the Lord.
He said the final step to being accepted by the Lord is a conscious decision to observe covenants through sacrifice. "Too often we think that the word 'sacrifice' refers to something big or hard for us to do," said Elder Kopischke. "In certain situations this may be true, but mostly it refers to living day-to-day as a true disciple of Christ."
He gave examples of observing covenants such as worthily partaking of the sacrament, reaching out to those in need, serving others, doing temple work or standing firm during the storms of life.
Elder Kopischke said, "Seeking and receiving the acceptance of the Lord will lead to the knowledge that we are chosen and blessed by Him. We will gain increased confidence that He will lead us and direct us for good. His tender mercies will become evident in our hearts, in our lives and in our families."