99944_000_004When I really listened to conference, I not only got the message—I learned something powerful about the messenger.
I reluctantly slipped out of my bed as my mom reminded me from my bedroom doorway that general conference was starting soon. As I got dressed, I thought about how nice it would be to sleep in for a couple more hours. I wondered if general conference was really that important on that day in April 1995. It’s mainly for adults, I thought to myself, and I’ll probably fall asleep anyway.
The minutes seemed to pass slower than usual as I tried to listen to the speakers and keep my mind from wandering. I wanted to have a good attitude and pay attention to what was being said, but I had a hard time understanding some of the talks.
Then President Hinckley approached the pulpit in the Tabernacle and began to speak. “This is his first general conference as the President of the Church,” my dad said. That caught my attention, and suddenly I was awake.
As he began his talk, I remembered a story my mom had told me about how she had heard President Hinckley speak at a youth conference when she was a teenager, and that it had really affected her. It was one of her first memorable spiritual experiences. Thinking about that, I was able to really focus on what President Hinckley was saying. As I listened, I felt a warm feeling start in my chest and then spread over my entire body. He truly is a prophet of the Lord, I thought. I was amazed when I realized that what I was feeling was the Spirit, and it was telling me something important.
After that experience, I now look forward to general conference every six months. I know the messages are divinely inspired; they are meant for us today. I especially look forward to hearing from the prophet because, as stated in the Doctrine and Covenants, “What I the Lord have spoken, I have spoken, and I excuse not myself; and though the heavens and the earth pass away, my word shall not pass away, but shall all be fulfilled, whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is the same” (D&C 1:38).