Monday, September 20, 2010

"Different" and "Rougher"

A week ago Sunday, there was a Regional Stake Conference broadcast (140 Stakes in Utah Valley and Heber Valley). The concluding speaker, Boyd K Packer, said, “things are going to be different from now on—things will be rougher for us than they were for the pioneers.” This remark followed Jeffrey Holland’s recounting of two rather dramatic pioneer stories. In turn, Jeffrey Holland’s talk followed two other talks which were about strengthening our testimonies and doing even better than we currently are in our faith and obedience.

For the past week, I have thought a lot about “different” and “rougher.” If Elder Packer’s talk had been a stand-alone talk, it may not have had the same impact as it actually had. Put together with the other talks, his statement was made more significant, and vice versa. Taken as a whole, the bottom line message (to me) from the conference seemed to be “your levels of faith, obedience, and testimony may have been fairly adequate up to this point, but today’s levels will not be sufficient for tomorrow’s challenges.”

As I’ve contemplated what he meant by “different,” I hardly know what to imagine or expect because things have been increasingly “different” over my whole lifetime. To become dramatically more “different” than today’s measure of “the-way-things-are” suggests (for one thing) that evil and wickedness will become significantly more rampant. “Rougher” seems to suggest physical challenges, and yet I think Elder Packer said that these “rougher” challenges will be more than physical.

So, not knowing specifically what to prepare for to face “different” and “rougher,” my only alternative at this juncture is to: (1) remember the inspiring faith and obedience of the pioneers and follow their examples, (2) purposefully increase my own personal faith and obedience, thereby strengthening my testimony. Thus fortified, the Holy Ghost will be able to tell me in the very hour what specific things I should do, and I will be able to recognize and confidently heed His voice while I am facing all of the “different” and “rougher” challenges that lie in my path.

That should keep me busy for a while. :D



Anonymous said...

One thing I remember from the conference was one of the speakers (I don't have my notes in front of me...) said that we need to be stronger spiritually and physically. I thought that significant.

I thought the conference wonderful! It was a great prelude to the upcoming General Conference!

Rebecca said...

wow! I wish I had been there.

I have felt a drive to work harder on my testimony so that I am strengthened to withstand anything that comes my way.

It's nice to know why :)