Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Farewell Talk

September 22, 2013

How can following the prophet help you to become truly converted?
·        Thanks to the Horner Family
·        What is a prophet?
In a talk given by Claudio R. M. Costa (of the seventy) he says,
“In the guide to the scriptures, we find the definition of the word prophet: “A person who has been called by and speaks for God. As a messenger of God, a prophet receives commandments, prophecies, and revelations from God.”
·        In Preach My Gospel it reads:
“One important way that God shows His love for us is by calling prophets; who are given the priesthood-the power and authority given to man to act in God’s name for the salvation of His children. Prophets learn the gospel of Jesus Christ by revelation. They in turn teach the gospel to others and testify of Jesus Christ as the Savior and Redeemer…In essence the prophet acts as a steward to oversee the household of God here on earth.”
·        Why is it important to have prophets upon the earth?
·        In Ephesians 4: 11-14 we read:
“And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;”
“For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:”
“Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ:”
“That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive.”

·        One question that came to my mind as I was preparing for this talk was,
“How can following the prophet help us to become truly converted?

·        What does it mean to be truly converted?
In True to the Faith under “conversion” it reads,
“To be able to receive the blessing of eternal life, we need to be ‘spiritually minded’ and conquer our unrighteous desires. We need to change. More accurately, we need to be changed, or converted, through the power of the Savior’s Atonement and through the power of the Holy Ghost. This process is called conversion. Conversion includes a change in behavior, but it goes beyond behavior; it is a change in our very nature… Conversion is a process, not an event.”
·        “Line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little...” (2 Nephi 28:30)

·        In a talk called “Converted unto the Lord” by Elder Bednar he also gives a great definition of what conversion is. It reads:
“True conversion brings a change in one’s beliefs, heart, and life to accept and conform to the will of God and includes a conscious commitment to become a disciple of Christ.”
·        Even members of the church have to continue to strive to be converted unto the Lord, Jesus Christ because we all have our ups and downs. We are human and we do make mistakes.
·        What is the process of Conversion?
As found in Alma 37 it is by “small and simple things.”
-Reading the scriptures regularly
-Daily prayer, going to church
-Serving others
-Listening and following the prophet and other leaders of the church.

·        Another quote found in that same talk by Elder Bednar reads:
“Samuel the Lamamnite identified five basic elements in becoming converted unto the Lord:
1.      Believing in the teachings and prophecies of the holy prophets as they are recorded in the scriptures.
2.      Exercising faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.
3.      Repenting
4.      Experiencing a mighty change of heart.
5.      Becoming “firm and steadfast in the faith”
“This is the pattern that leads to conversion.”

·        To now answer that question posed earlier of how can following the prophet help us to be more truly the converted?

-By following the prophet we are exercising our faith in God
-By exercising our faith in God we are experiencing a mighty change in heart and becoming more like our Savior, Jesus Christ.
-In turn we are then becoming converted unto the Lord, Jesus Christ.

·        Experience of me becoming more converted.

“Testimony is the beginning of and a prerequisite to continuing conversion. Testimony is a point of departure; it is not an ultimate destination. Strong testimony is the foundation upon which conversion is established.”
“Knowing that the gospel is true is the essence of a testimony. Consistently being true to the gospel is the essence of conversion.” –Elder Bednar

·        Challenge to watch and really listen to the prophets and apostles in General Conference


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