Jeffrey R. Holland on Parenting

“Brothers and sisters, our children take their flight into the future with our thrust and with our aim. And even as we anxiously watch that arrow in flight and know all the evils that can deflect its course after it has left our hand, nevertheless we take courage in remembering that the most important mortal factor in determining that arrow’s destination will be the stability, strength, and unwavering certainty of the holder of the bow…

God will send aid to no one more readily than He will send it to a child—and to the parent of a child.”

- Jeffrey R. Holland, A Prayer for the Children, Ensign May 2003.

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Smith and Sjodahl – “Prayer is the most wonderful institution in the Kingdom of God”

“Prayer is the most wonderful institution in the kingdom of God, and none was more familiar with it than the Prophet Joseph. But there are many who have no higher conception of it than to regard it as only a means whereby to obtain gifts from God, most often of a material character. Is the gift bestowed? Then the prayer is answered. Is it withheld? Then God did not hear. ‘Such theory,’ as one has said, ‘is obviously too simple and superficial to be true. Prayer is more subtle than this doctrine implies. It may be described as the soul speaking to God and hearing God speak to it. It is, therefore, the deepest and the most wonderful act of which a man is capable, for in it the whole universe is, as it were, concentrated.” Hyrum Smith and Janne Sjodahl, Doctrine and Covenants Commentary, pg. 551.

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Robert H. Daines – Story of Repentance: Pray to Live Clean

“A number of years ago, when I first came to this campus, I was called to be a bishop of a student ward. One day a young man walked into my office–a young man I had never seen or met before. He was obviously distraught. He paced back and forth in front of my desk, finally stopped, then looked at me and asked, “Are you Bishop Daines?”
I said, “Yes, I am.”
He then said, “I want you to excommunicate me.”
I said, “Well, we’d better talk.”
So he closed the door, and for the next two hours I heard the story of the most disturbed, distorted life I had ever heard of before or since. For the first and only time in my life, I felt as I visited with this young man that if I had ever met somebody who was a lost soul, this was one of them. One of his transgressions was that of homosexuality. He was a student at the university, and at the time the recommended procedure was to visit with either Elder Mark E. Petersen or Elder Spencer W. Kimball of the Council of the Twelve. We were assigned to visit with Elder Kimball. What a profoundly instructive experience that was for me.
As we talked with Elder Kimball, he heard the same story I had heard. His response, however, was different. He looked at that young man and asked him three questions.
Calling him by name, he first asked, “Would you like to be forgiven of all of your sins and transgressions?”
The young man said yes.
The second question was, “Would you like all of the blessings the Lord has in store for you?”
The young man said yes, he would.
The third question was, “Would you like to be married in the temple for time and all eternity and have a family and raise them up unto the Lord?”
The young man broke down and said, “I would.”
Then Elder Kimball gave this simple but profound advice. He said, “Then let me tell you how to do it. You get up in the morning, you fall to your knees, and you ask God for strength to live clean for one day. Then when you go to bed at night, you fall to your knees and express gratitude for the strength to have been clean for that one day. You get up on the second day and you do the same thing. You fall to your knees and you ask for strength. You go to bed at night and you express gratitude. And two days will become a week, and a week will become a month, and a month will become six months, and six months will become a year. However long it takes, you can be forgiven.”
The interesting sequel is that for the next three months Elder Kimball called this young bishop in Provo to ask how his friend was doing. He cared enough that he made those phone calls.
It is my testimony to you that God delights in forgiving us. We are told that He descended below all things. I believe that to mean that He has felt all of the concerns and burdens you and I have felt and more. There is not one of us here who can fall further than Christ can reach.” Robert H. Daines, The Doctrines of Christ, BYUDA 6/2000
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Joseph F. Smith on True Repentance

“True repentance is not only sorrow for sins and humble penitence and contrition before God, but it involves the necessity of turning away from them, a discontinuance of all evil practices and deeds, a thorough reformation of life, a vital change from evil to good, from vice to virtue, from darkness to light. Not only so, but to make restitution so far as is possible for all the wrongs that we have done, to pay our debts and restore to God and man their rights, that which is due them from us. This is true repentance and the exercise of the will and all the powers of body and mind is demanded to complete this glorious work of repentance.” Joseph F. Smith

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Jeffrey R. Holland – To all of you who think you are lost or without hope

“To all of you who think you are lost or without hope, or who think you have done too much that was too wrong for too long, to every one of you who worry that you are stranded somewhere on the wintry plains of life and have wrecked your handcart in the process, this conference calls out Jehovah’s unrelenting refrain, “[My] hand is stretched out still.” “I shall lengthen out mine arm unto them,” He said, “[and even if they] deny me; nevertheless, I will be merciful unto them, … if they will repent and come unto me; for mine arm is lengthened out all the day long, saith the Lord God of Hosts.” His mercy endureth forever, and His hand is stretched out still. His is the pure love of Christ, the charity that never faileth, that compassion which endures even when all other strength disappears.” Jeffrey R. Holland – Prophets in the Land Again.

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Henry B. Eyring quoting Spencer W. Kimball on the Pain of Repentance

“This is my warning to you today. It is a bad estimate of your personal costs to believe that a choice to commit sin is made so free by the power of the Atonement that we can have painless forgiveness. Listen to these words from President Spencer W. Kimball:

“To every forgiveness there is a condition. The plaster must be as wide as the sore. The fasting, the prayers, the humility must be equal to or greater than the sin. There must be a broken heart and a contrite spirit. There must be “sackcloth and ashes.” There must be tears and genuine change of heart. There must be conviction of the sin, abandonment of the evil, confession of the error to properly constituted authorities of the Lord. There must be restitution and a confirmed, determined change of pace, direction and destination. Conditions must be controlled and companionship corrected or changed. There must be a washing of robes to get them white and there must be a new consecration and devotion to the living of all of the laws of God. In short, there must be an overcoming of self, of sin, and of the world.” [The Miracle of Forgiveness (Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1969), p. 353]
That is not a description of an easy fix justifying a purposely flawed life. That is not a description of a “few stripes.” How much better to choose to be good, early, a long way upstream from the terrible effects of sin.” Henry B. Eyring, Choose to be Good, BYUDA, 11/91

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Richard G. Scott on Complete Forgiveness

“If you have repented from serious transgression and mistakenly believe that you will always be a second-class citizen in the kingdom of God, learn that is not true. The Savior said: ‘Behold, he who has repented of his sins, the same is forgiven, and I, the Lord, remember them no more. ‘By this ye may know if a man repenteth of his sins–behold, he will confess them and forsake them.’16 Find encouragement in the lives of Alma the Younger and the sons of Mosiah. They were tragically wicked. Yet their full repentance and service qualified them to be considered as noble as righteous Captain Moroni.17 To you who have sincerely repented yet continue to feel the burden of guilt, realize that to continue to suffer for sins when there has been proper repentance and forgiveness of the Lord is prompted by the master of deceit. Lucifer will encourage you to continue to relive the details of past mistakes, knowing that such thoughts can hamper your progress. Thus he attempts to tie strings to the mind and body so that he can manipulate you like a puppet to discourage personal achievement.” Richard G. Scott – General Conference, October 2000

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Dallin H. Oaks – From The Challenge to Become

“From such teachings we conclude that the Final Judgment is not just an evaluation of a sum total of good and evil acts – what we have done. It is an acknowledgment of the final effect of our acts and thoughts – what we have become. It is not enough for anyone just to go through the motions. The commandments, ordinances, and covenants of the gospel are not a list of deposits required to be made in some heavenly account. The gospel of Jesus Christ is a plan that shows us how to become what our Heavenly Father desires us to become.” Dallin H. Oaks – The Challenge to Become – GC 10/2000

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Henry B. Eyring on a Repentant Heart

“I hope a day doesn’t begin or end that you don’t consider whether something you did might have offended the Holy Ghost or made it harder for the Spirit to influence you. That is what it means to me to have a repentant heart.” Henry B. Eyring, To Draw Closer to God, pp. 17-18.

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Stephen E. Robinson on Knowing our Efforts are Acceptable

“There is a way we can know that our efforts are acceptable, that our covenant is recognized and valid before God. If we experience the gifts of the spirit or the influence of the Holy Ghost, we can know that we are in the covenant relationship, for the gifts and companionship of the Holy Ghost are given to none else. This is one reason why the gift of the Holy Ghost is given – as a token and assurance of our covenant status and as a down payment to us on the blessings and glory to come if we are faithful… This is perhaps one reason why the Holy Ghost is called the Comforter, because if we enjoy that gift, we can know that our efforts are acceptable – for now – and that we are justified before God by our faith in Christ. And that is comfort indeed.” Stephen E. Robinson – Believing Christ pp. 94-95

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