We had an incredible weekend. We had General Conference, Lamb Weigh In, attended Little House on the Prairie presented by our local actors theatre, rode horses, tilled the garden, and just overall enjoyed our time as a family.
General Conference in our church, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, occurs semi-annually during the first weekend of both April and October. It is a chance for us as church members to hear from the general authorities of our church. I feel like this is something very special and unique to our church. Only thing I could compare it to is a papal visit, but that papal visit is in the same place every year and is open to everyone both in person and virtually.
Since we have done away with live television, we were able to watch the conference on the Church’s Youtube page. What an incredible spiritual experience that was so relevant to our time.
My favorite talk came from Elder Jörg Klebingat titled ‘Valiant Discipleship in the Latter Days’. This talk was chalked full of so meaningful and inspiring messages that it would be impractical to list them all here. Instead, I will share my favorite quote from the talk.
“We can accept and respect others without endorsing their beliefs or actions that do not align with the Lord’s will. There is no need to sacrifice truth on the altar of agreeableness and social desirability.”
If you read my last post, you know that this is something that is very close to my heart at this time. I’m making decisions for my family to protect the content that is coming into my home. However, that does not mean I condemn anyone who has a different set of beliefs than me. I accept and respect others’ decisions to live a life different than me while at the same time gripping tight to my beliefs and convictions. In essence, I choose to agree to disagree.
I lost some followers over my this last post. It upset me for a bit. I had a lot of anxiety knowing that I posted something very personal and sacred to me and it led to negative output from those around me. But then I had a phone call with my friend Clay Conry on Sunday morning. I had been struggling with the decison to post this and the backlash that it had caused. However, as a fellow man of faith, Clay encouraged me that although it caused some pain, it was admirable to share my beliefs. At the end of our phone call, Clay asked if he could pray with me. That prayer lifted me up in so many ways, giving me the strength I needed to lead my family that coming day. I’m forever grateful for the influence of good people like Clay in my life
I appreciate all of your support and kind words. Like I told my friend Laci, God has given me the gift to communicate my feelings and beliefs using the written word. I’m so thankful that others are willing to listen and read those words!
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Be sure to check out this weeks podcast. This week is April’s installment of the “Ranching Side Hustle” series where my buddy Tyler Keckley and I talk to a fellow passionate rancher who is doing it in addition to a “town job.” This week, we talk to Bobby Lee Hanks, owner of Hurricane Creek Farms, in West Tennessee. Go check out Bobby on his Youtube page.
I’ll close with a quote from one of my favorite church leaders, Jeffrey R. Holland.
Be strong. Live the gospel faithfully even if others around you don’t live it at all. Defend your beliefs with courtesy and with compassion, but defend them.Jeffery R. Holland