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Saturday Evening Stake Conference

Posted: 20 Sep 2018, 06:23
by AmyJ
This past weekend was our Stake Conference.

My husband had a Saturday afternoon leadership meeting that he choose to attend. We decided about an hour before he needed to leave for that meeting that I would drop him off at a house of a friend who would give him a ride to the leadership meeting, and then I would get the girls ready and meet him at the Stake Center (about 45 minutes away). He would entertain the girls in the Primary Room while I attended the evening adult session.

I admit to mixed feelings about the idea. I had originally not planned on going to the evening session, thus freeing my evening for laundry and hanging out after fulfilling my family responsibilities. Setting it up so that my husband went to his meeting and I went to the other meeting accelerated my Saturday schedule (and shifted some of the laundry onto Sunday - not sorry). it also meant that I had just a few hours to get the girls bathed, dressed properly ( my husband said that I could put them in play clothes, but I wanted them to look the part culturally for the 30 seconds someone might see them). I am leery of crowds still, so super enthusiastic about sitting in a room with several hundred people. Plus, I had forgotten to take my medicine that morning and was afraid to take the missed dose in the afternoon, so didn't have pharmacy help dealing with my anxiety of the situation. BUT, I wanted to sustain my husband, and I wanted to be available for revelation - I think that revelation is mostly perception-based these days, but that a person needs to physically put themselves in a place that enables them to receive it.

The first 20 minutes or so was on the topic of ministering - which was great because I am passionate about helping others and looking out for them. It was more of an open forum meeting with the member of the 70 asking questions and opening it up for members to discuss. There was also a nice video (probably on Mormon Channel) about "Connections" that I found interesting. Out of boredom I downloaded the Family Search app and started playing with it (which was fun for me). I thought that the general authority was funny and connecting to his audience in a good way.
NOTE: Because I could not think of something pertinent and uplifting (or nice) to say, I made sure to keep my hands down and say nothing. Since I can be outspoken, I am proud of myself for this choice.

He lost me when he steered the conversation to "Because we love God we minister to others, we do family history, we do temple work and God rewards us". I think I am taking some liberties with summarizing it that way, but the themes of why we minister (because we love God and its a way to get to know God), and family history/temple work and missionary work as extensions of ministering were there. Also, the concept that as we complete actions, God helps us, inspires us, and sends blessings into our lives was there.

My core problem is that I believe in ministering from a humanist/value perspective. I strive to minister to others because they are humans and I am a human. I don't know if my ministering efforts impact God in any way - nor does it actually matter because I do it for myself. For me, living my life as if God was not part of the equation (either because of non-existence or being more hands-off and letting us have the space to grow) has made me think about what it means to be a good person, and how to choose to be a better person from a values/ethics perspective.

My husband gave me kuddos for trying (basically) relationship-wise. He struggles with and is weighted down by the concept that he is solely responsible for raising our children in church teachings and is afraid of the day when I don't go to church. Mostly I am compassionate, understanding, and remind him of my choices and that he can talk to our branch president and mourn as he needs to. I refuse to give into my snarky side and say, "what about all those times when I took our child to church because you were too depressed to do so, and all the times now when I complete the executive functioning to get the kids to church even when you don't feel well and I don't want to. I know a few things about what it felt like to be the only parent involving the kid in church for years - it sucks but you suck it up and get over it if it is important enough to you". [Sorry - little bitter still]

Re: Saturday Evening Stake Conference

Posted: 20 Sep 2018, 07:58
by BeJoyful

AmyJ wrote: For me, living my life as if God was not part of the equation (either because of non-existence or being more hands-off and letting us have the space to grow) has made me think about what it means to be a good person, and how to choose to be a better person from a values/ethics perspective.
I love this, and I totally agree. My husband and I were just talking about this last night- and loving humans because we should, not because of promise of reward or fear of punishment.

And if God does exist in the way we've been taught, I think he'd be pleased by our motivations as much as the actions themselves.

Great thoughts! Image

Sent from my SM-G960U using Tapatalk


Re: Saturday Evening Stake Conference

Posted: 20 Sep 2018, 09:00
by DarkJedi
Of course I agree we should love each other. I think that's primarily what Jesus asked us to do and I think it's universal among world religions and belief systems. It's kind of the "one thing" I believe (know) about God.

But I also think I understand where the Seventy was coming from, and I think it needs to be put in those terms for some members to get it. Jesus did say loving one another is a commandment, and the Jews have believed that for thousands of years. And I am actually a believer in the idea that the reason we should keep any commandment is because of love for God as opposed to fear of punishment or earning a reward. My hero addressed subject in his April 2015 talk on grace:
If grace is a gift of God, why then is obedience to God’s commandments so important? Why bother with God’s commandments—or repentance, for that matter? Why not just admit we’re sinful and let God save us?
Or, to put the question in Paul’s words, “Shall we continue in sin, that grace may abound?” Paul’s answer is simple and clear: “God forbid.”
Brothers and sisters, we obey the commandments of God—out of love for Him!
I just think the majority of members need to hear it put that way, and I think your Seventy is on target. Just my opinion.

Re: Saturday Evening Stake Conference

Posted: 20 Sep 2018, 09:08
by Roy
AmyJ wrote:
20 Sep 2018, 06:23
BUT, I wanted to sustain my husband, and I wanted to be available for revelation - I think that revelation is mostly perception-based these days, but that a person needs to physically put themselves in a place that enables them to receive it.
I really like this part. I like that you sustain/support your husband in tangible ways even though he is imperfect and makes you mad sometimes. I also love that you still find value in those flashes of insight - even if your perspective of where they come from and what they mean may be different.

Re: Saturday Evening Stake Conference

Posted: 20 Sep 2018, 10:41
by SamBee
Sounds very similar to our stake conference where the Saturday session was all about ministering.

Re: Saturday Evening Stake Conference

Posted: 20 Sep 2018, 12:48
by Heber13
Good report.

I think you can find the overlap and similarities you share with others for ministering out of love.

Perhaps there are the differences about God's involvement in those motivations in many ways...but...you don't need to focus on those or reconcile.

Actions speak louder than words, and everyone's talk about "why we minister" is about them and their words. It's ok for you to have a slightly different underlying reason behind it...as long as it continues to lead you towards loving others.

Focus on the common ground, not the differences.

Re: Saturday Evening Stake Conference

Posted: 20 Sep 2018, 17:49
by DarkJedi
SamBee wrote:
20 Sep 2018, 10:41
Sounds very similar to our stake conference where the Saturday session was all about ministering.
Our SP tells us that all adult sessions of SC everywhere are going to be about ministering this half of the year per the Q12.

Re: Saturday Evening Stake Conference

Posted: 20 Sep 2018, 18:33
by mom3
Our SP tells us that all adult sessions of SC everywhere are going to be about ministering this half of the year per the Q12.
We had ours a couple weeks ago, Elder Acosta came. We keep getting the big namers. We must be doing something naughty and no one's told me yet. Dang. Anyway that was the message, too.

Re: Saturday Evening Stake Conference

Posted: 22 Sep 2018, 09:29
by Curt Sunshine
Ours is today. It will be interesting.

Re: Saturday Evening Stake Conference

Posted: 22 Sep 2018, 10:23
by LookingHard
mom3 wrote:
20 Sep 2018, 18:33
We keep getting the big namers. We must be doing something naughty and no one's told me yet.
I think the strengthening members committee watches this site and they know generally where you live so they keep trying to flush you out. :lol: :D :lol: