With the concluding speech of general conference, Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles expressed to President Thomas S. Monson the love that he and members of the Church have for him.
In a light-hearted manner, Elder Holland noted two problems. First was the fact that he was the only person standing between listeners and the ice cream waiting at the close of conference. He explained the second problem by showing an illustration of a T-Rex chasing two children. The children were labeled "Us" while the T-Rex was labeled "Tomorrow."
Elder Holland acknowledged that the “wonderful feelings” that defined the conference will, perhaps, give way to more worldly matters of the day.
Moses, the Apostles of the New Testament and even the Lord, Jesus Christ, sometimes had to reluctantly transition from “celestial experiences” to more earthbound issues, Elder Holland noted.
“If in the days ahead you see not only limitations in those around you but also find elements in your own life that don’t yet measure up to the messages you have heard this weekend, please don’t be cast down in spirit and don’t give up,” he encouraged. “The gospel, the Church and these wonderful semi-annual gatherings are intended to give hope and inspiration. They're not intended to discourage you.”
The adversary, he added, would try to convince many that the ideals outlined in general conference are unrealistic and that people can't really progress.
“[Lucifer] knows he can’t improve, he can’t progress, that worlds without end he will never have a bright tomorrow. He is a miserable man bound by eternal limitations, and he wants you to be miserable, too. Well, don’t fall for that. With the gift of the Atonement and the strength of heaven to help us, we can improve, and the great thing about the gospel is we get credit for trying, even if we don’t always succeed.”
Remember, the Lord blesses those who want to improve, who accept the need for commandments and try to keep them, who cherish Christ-like virtues and strive to acquire them.
“If you stumble in that pursuit, so does everyone; the Savior is there to help you keep going,” he said. “If you fall, summon His strength. ... Get back up. Then repent and repair and fix whatever you have to fix, and keep going. Soon enough you will have the success you seek.”
The first great commandment is to love God. “But the first great truth of all eternity is that God loves us with all of His heart, might, mind and strength. That love is the foundation stone of eternity and it should be the foundation stone of our daily life. Indeed, it is only with that reassurance burning in our soul that we can have the confidence to keep trying to improve, to keep seeking forgiveness for our sins and to keep extending that grace to our neighbor.”
If one gives his or her heart to God and does his or her best, then tomorrow and every other day is going to be magnificent, even if it's not always recognized as such, promised Elder Holland.
“[Heavenly Father] wants to bless us,” he said. "A rewarding, abundant and eternal life is the very object of His merciful plan for His children.”
Keep loving. Keep trying. Keep trusting. Keep believing. Keep growing. “Heaven is cheering you on today, tomorrow, forever.”
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