8 LDS Talks that Changed My Life

12.10.2012



I have been thinking about making this list for a while now. There are always certain LDS talks that stick with you, touch you and inspire you. Everyone's list will be different, but this is mine. I hope you find some inspiration here!

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"The Way of the Master" 
by Thomas S. Monson
 April 1996 - LDS General Conference
Topic: Life after Death

This talk made such a distinct impression on me in my youth that I remember the exact place I was sitting and how I felt when I saw it in real life (I would have been 8 years old).  The beginning of the talk is lovely, expressing teachings of Jesus Christ and how we can implement those things in our lives.  But the Life-changing part of this talk comes a little later when President Monson relays a story titled "Information Please" (beginning at 13:30 of this clip).

This story is profoundly touching and shares with us the message that death is not the end of life. While on my mission an Elder I knew lost a loved one.  In that moment this wonderful talk entered my mind and I shared it with him, later finding the actual talk in an Ensign and copying it for him to read.  His pain was slightly lighter because of the words of this beautiful talk and the testimony that our lives are eternal.

Favorite Quote: "Always remember that there are other worlds in which to sing."

Read it here.
Watch it here.

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"The Purifying Power of Gethsemane "
by Bruce R. McConkie
 April 1985 - LDS General Conference
Topic: Jesus Christ/Final Testimony

This is a Conference talk that many have seen and heard over the years since it was given in 1985.  It was the final talk Bruce R. McConkie gave before his death a short time later.  It's pure and unfettered message of the atonement of Jesus Christ is clear and powerful.  Towards the end of the talk Elder McConkie shares his personal testimony which is life-changing and speaks to the power of faith in Jesus Christ as a sure witness and knowledge. 

Favorite Quote: "I am one of his witnesses, and in a coming day I shall feel the nail marks in his hands and in his feet and shall wet his feet with my tears. But I shall not know any better then than I know now that he is God’s Almighty Son, that he is our Savior and Redeemer, and that salvation comes in and through his atoning blood and in no other way."

Read it here.
Watch it here.

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"Happiness, Your Heritage"
by Dieter F. Uchtdorf
 October 2008 - LDS General Conference (RS Meeting)
Topic: Happiness and Talents

I love this talk.  I have long thought that our desire to create and make things beautiful came from the great creator, God.  Elder Uchtdorf has such an eloquent way of speaking and a deep testimony.  This talk makes me want to make my life, world and family more beautiful than before.

Favorite Quote: "You may think you don’t have talents, but that is a false assumption, for we all have talents and gifts, every one of us. The bounds of creativity extend far beyond the limits of a canvas or a sheet of paper and do not require a brush, a pen, or the keys of a piano. Creation means bringing into existence something that did not exist before — colorful gardens, harmonious homes, family memories, flowing laughter."

Read it here.
Watch it here.

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"More Diligent and Concerned at Home"
by David A. Bednar
October 2009 - LDS General Conference
Topic: Families

This talk helped prompt me making this blog and forcing myself to hold more consistent Family Home Evenings with my family.  Sometimes, it is easy to not know which are the "right" ways to parent.  But these easy steps are so clear and simple.  And they are followed by a promise that, in our parenting and family relationships, we are not alone.

Favorite Quote:  "May every spouse, every child, and every parent be blessed to communicate and receive love, to bear and be edified by strong testimony, and to become more consistent in the seemingly small things that matter so much.  In these important pursuits we will never be left alone."

Read it here.
Watch it here.

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"Our Only Chance"
by Sheri Dew
April 1999 - LDS General Conference
Topic: The Atonement


This is another talk I remember listening to as it happened.  I was on my mission, and Sheri Dew's powerful  testimony of the Atonement made a deep impression on me.  I love her call for each of us to do our part to make the Atonement real in our lives by seeking Him.

Favorite Quote: "He knows how to succor all of us. But we activate the power of the Atonement in our lives … by seeking after Him".

Read it here.
Watch it here.

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"We all have a Father 
in whom we can Trust"
by Kenneth Johnson
 April 1994 - LDS General Conference
Topic: Children of God

While serving my mission in Nebraska a General Authority came to speak to the missionaries.  I had only been a missionary a few short months when Elder Kenneth Johnson came to our Zone Conference, but his visit was profound.  I remember that day as a spiritual milestone in my life.  Elder Johnson's words sank into my heart and were there sanctified by the Holy Ghost.

I still have my notes from his various talks on that day and I hold them to be sacred.  After that day I found past talks from Elder Johnson and came across this one, which has always stayed with me.  Having an abusive and unrighteous earthly Father myself, these words of truth have helped heal my heart.

Favorite Quote:  "We should always remember that regardless of our circumstances, we all have a Father in whom we can trust and to whom we can turn for comfort and counsel. He is our Heavenly Father."

Read it here.
Watch it here.

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"A Voice of Warning"
by Henry B. Eyring
October 1998 - LDS General Conference
Topic: Member Missionary Work


In my opinion, this is the best talk on Member Missionary talk out there.  President Eyring's powerful, yet relate-able style, makes me feel like I can share the gospel with my friends and that goal is attainable.  His words make me feel the sheer joy that comes in seeing others accept the gospel you shared with them.  I love it when his voice cracks half way through as a testament to the importance of this work.

Favorite Quote:  "...I want to do better. I want to increase my power to invite people to be taught. With that desire and with faith that God will help us, we will do better. It isn’t hard to see how...Love always comes first."

Read it here.
Watch it here.

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"A Prophet’s Counsel and Prayer for Youth
(Six B's)"
by Gordon B. Hinckley
 November 2000 - LDS Youth & Single Adults Mtg.
Topic: Happiness in Life

Who doesn't know this one? A clear and concise list of attributes that, when practiced, will give us lasting peace and happiness.  So simple and clear, but so profound.

Favorite Quote:  "I could wish for you nothing better than that your lives be fruitful, that your service be dedicated and freely given, that you contribute to the knowledge and the well-being of the world in which you live, and that you do it humbly and faithfully before your God. He loves you. We love you. We want you to be happy and successful, to make significant contributions to the world in which you will live and to the on-rolling of this great and majestic work of the Lord."

Read it here.
 
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So that's MY list. 
But I'm dying to know...
which talks would top YOUR list?

34 Way Righteous Comments:

Gretchen said...

Thank you so much for this list! I joined the church in 2003, so a lot of these are from my "pre-church life" and while I've been wanting to read and watch more of the GC works from then, it gets really overwhelming! This will give me a really good starting point!

Gretchen said...

Oh, and "But If Not" by Elder Dennis E. Simmons is one of my all-time favorite talks. :o)

Stephanie said...

Hi Emilie!
I don't know if you remember me, but I served at Winter Quarters from 1998-2000 (Sister Nichols). I have loved your blog and use it often. It's incredible. Thank you for sharing your talents.
Most of your list are among my favorites, and I'm happy to read other's I haven't read, or remembered. I'm a bit of a Jefferey R. Holland junkie:) Here are some of my favorites, that have been instrumental in my life.
Thanks again for all you do!
Missionary work and The Atonement--Holland
None were with Him-Holland
Broken things to Mend--Holland
A testimony, a covenant, and a Witness--Holland

Angee said...

I LOVE this! Thank you, thank you, thank you. I can't wait to listen to these (and those listed in the comments). Here's my list:

Elder Holland -The Laborers in the Vineyard (April Conference 2012)

Elder Wirthlin - One Step after Another (October Conference 2001)

President Uchtdorf - Forget Me Not (October Conference 2011)

Brad Wilcox - His Grace is Sufficient (BYU Speech July 2011)

Howard W Hunter - Fear Not Little Flock (BYU Speech March 1989)

Elder Holland - Israel, Israel, God Is Calling (CES Fireside 2012)

Elder Holland - An High Priest of Good Things to Come (October Conference 1999)

Emilie said...

Stephanie - I totally remember you! Are you on Facebook? I would love to catch up!

Brittany said...

Hi Emilie!- I came across this post on Pinterest. I have been investigating the Church since June and have been working my way through General Conferences. I am so excited to get into your favorite talks and those listed in the comments above. Also, I am going to be baptized on Saturday! Thank you for creating this post and helping me to continue my excitement and love for the Church and the Gospel.

makana hansen said...

Hey there! Love your blog too! And this list! And.. I served at WQ too! Funny huh? I was there in 2004-2005

TaylorJoni said...

Thank you for this wonderful list. I remember several of them too. One of my recent favorites was by President Uchdtorf's message that he gave last year in Women's Conference about the little blue flower, the Forget Me Not. That one has had a lasting impression on me. We do not have to do great and wonderful things to help others, just something small will cheer someone's live.

Rachel said...

What a great list! I look forward to listening (and re-listening for some) to these talks. Even though it's not from a gen authority, the talk that really changed my life is After All We Can Do from Brad Wilcox. It completely changed the way I look at the Atonement and our life. http://byutv.org/watch/adab2746-ea97-466b-bd62-468b1dce7d76

Brittany said...

I found this through Pinterest and had to add a few of my favorites. Like the commenter above, I have a special place in my heart for Elder Holland.

This one is a BYU devotional from then-BYU President Holland in 1988, though he also gave an abbreviated version of it as a conference address titled Personal Purity in October 1998. The devotional version is better, in my opinion, it's called Of Souls, Symbols and Sacraments: http://www.familylifeeducation.org/gilliland/procgroup/Souls.htm

"This Do in Remembrance of Me," by Elder Holland (October 1995 General Conference). https://www.lds.org/general-conference/1995/10/this-do-in-remembrance-of-me?lang=eng

"Mothers Who Know" by Julie B Beck (October 2007 General Conference). https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2007/10/mothers-who-know?lang=eng

"What Manner of Men and Women Ought Ye to Be" by Elder Lynn G. Robbins (April 2011 General Conference). https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2011/04/what-manner-of-men-and-women-ought-ye-to-be?lang=eng

Miranda said...

Gotta say, my favorite is "Mothers Who Know" by Julie B Beck. Love the standards for women it sets forth.

Dorothy Creek said...

There is a talk by Elder Holland that has changed my life more than once. It's called "Cast Not Away Therefore Your Confidence" here's the link:

http://speeches.byu.edu/?act=viewitem&id=795

It is absolutely beautiful!

Cami said...

I agree with Dorothy. "Cast Not Away Therefore Your Confidence" never gets old and has changed me so many times. I can't say enough about this talk! It makes things just click. Awesome perspective on how Satan works in our own lives to try to get us to not do what we are meant to do.

Crystal said...

I just read this one by Elder Holland a few weeks ago and I can't get it out of my mind. It for sure makes the list: The Bitter Cup and the Bloody Baptism by Holland, found in BYU Speeches.

Kelli said...

October 1974 (Four years before I was born) - Do Not Despair by President Ezra Taft Benson

October 2011 (actually given in September) - Forget Me Not by President Uchtdorf

October 1995 (actually given in September) - The Family a Proclamation to the World from the First Presidency of the LDS Church, originally read by President Gordon B. Hinckley

Those three make my list for sure. I may have to do some more thinking on this (I have quite a few I love and read often).

Anonymous said...

Elder Jeffrey R. Holland "Maybe Christmas Doesn't Come From a Store"

Tiffany said...

Glimpses of Heaven.. President Spencer W. Kimball
But if Not..Elder Dennis E Simmons
The Currant Bush..Elder Hugh B. Brown

Shannon said...

Elder Hales' Provident Preparedness (or something like that) from about 3 or 4 Octobers ago. Loved it. Changed my life. "Why do you want it? Do you need it?" etc. I was looking for new houses when my ward boundaries changed yet again. (9 wards in 12 years in the same house!) Buying a new house just to be deep within my beloved former ward's boundaries was not a good financial decision. While listening to his talk the Spirit whispered to me that my home was a wonderful place to weather the storm. We stayed and weathered that storm. What an amazing blessing!!

Andrea Urban said...

Tender Mercies, by Elder Bednar

wendo said...

2 of mine are definitely the Purifying Power of Gethsemane and More Diligent and Concerned at Home - as you listed. But another I go back to again and again is Beware of Pride - Ezra Taft Benson 1989.

Amazon Mama said...

Beware of Pride--Benson

Anonymous said...

Dieter F. Uchtdorf, "The Infinite Power of Hope"

Jacob and Cami said...

Thanks for sharing your list! Here's a couple of my favorites:

Eternal Marriage - F. Burton Howard (April 2003)

Behold the Man - Keith B. McMullin (October 1997 Priesthood session)

Anonymous said...

I'm fifteen years old and I'm gonna have to say the Conference talk that changed my life is definitely one titled "Remember Who You Are" by Sister Elaine S. Dalton at the Young Women's broadcast a few years ago. This quote: The world places so much emphasis on physical attractiveness and would have you believe that you are to look like the elusive model on the cover of a magazine. The Lord would tell you that you are each uniquely beautiful. When you are virtuous, chaste, and morally clean, your inner beauty glows in your eyes and in your face" pretty much sums up the whole talk. It really strengthened my testimony because I could then (and now) believe that true beauty comes from the inside. I no longer struggle with self-confidence because I know I'm a daughter of God and that's enough!!!

Anonymous said...

...thanks for sharing these speeches...I was away from church for some time & read them was so good...it helped clear even more my view...God bless you...

C Shap said...

I'm excited to take these on a trip and re-read/study them. Thank you!! - as well as come back and read others' favorites in the comments! The ones for me that have really affected me are:

Elder Holland - An High Priest of Good Things to Come
https://www.lds.org/general-conference/1999/10/an-high-priest-of-good-things-to-come?lang=eng

Sister Wixom - The Words We Speak
https://www.lds.org/ensign/print/2013/05/the-words-we-speak?lang=eng&clang=eng

Elder Bednar - A Reservoir of Living Water (CES Fireside)
http://www.lds.org/library/display/0,4945,538-1-4040-1,00.html

Pres. Uchtdorf: The Infinite Power of Hope
https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2008/10/the-infinite-power-of-hope?lang=eng

Pres. Uchtdorf: Happiness Is Our Heritage

And believe it or not, a CNN article that does a fabulous job explaining the principle of Hope!
http://www.cnn.com/2013/04/11/health/hope-healing-enayati

Elder Craig Cardon: The Savior Wants To Forgive
https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2013/04/the-savior-wants-to-forgive?lang=eng

Elaine S. Dalton: Love Her Mother
https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2011/10/love-her-mother?lang=eng

& Be Not Moved
http://www.lds.org/broadcasts/article/general-young-women-meeting/2013/03/be-not-moved?lang=eng

& We Are Daughters of Our Heavenly Father
http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2013/04/we-are-daughters-of-our-heavenly-father?lang=eng

Elder D. Todd Christofferson: Let Us Be Men!
http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2006/10/let-us-be-men?lang=eng

C Shap said...

And I have to add (and totally agree w/ the above too!!...)

Tender Mercies
Cast Not Away Therefore Your Confidence
Forget Me Not
&
Eternal Marriage

Anonymous said...

Miracles by Matthew Cowley. If you ever doubt the power of the Priesthood, listen (or read if you can find it) to this talk. Absolutely amazing. One of my favorite quotes:

I was called to a home in a little village in New Zealand one day. There the Relief Society sisters were preparing the body of one of our Saints. They had placed his body in front of the big house, as they call it, the house where the people come to wail and weep and mourn over the dead, when in rushed the dead man’s brother. He said, “Administer to him.” And the young [Maoris] said, “Why, you shouldn’t do that; he’s dead.” “You do it!”

This same old man that I had with me when his niece was so ill was there. The [dead man’s brother] got down on his knees, and he anointed this man. Then this great old sage got down and blessed him and commanded him to rise. You should have seen the Relief Society sisters scatter. He sat up and said, “Send for the elders; I don’t feel very well.” Of course, all of that was just psychological effect on that dead man. Wonderful, isn’t it—this psychological effect business? We told him he had just been administered to, and he said, “Oh, that was it.” He said, “I was dead. I could feel life coming back into me just like a blanket unrolling.” He outlived the brother that came in and told us to administer to him.

Karen K. said...

Come what may and love it by Joseph Wirthlin

Anonymous said...

There are many good talks listed here. I would have to add:

• The Lord's Wind, by Elder John H. Groberg (1993)
• And Nothing Shall Offend Them, by Elder David A. Bednar (2006)
• You Are My Hands, by Pres. Dieter F. Uchtdorf (2010)

The talk Shannon talked about in an earlier post was Becoming Provident Providers Temporally and Spiritually, by Elder Hales (April 2009)

Thanks for your list.
Donna

Anonymous said...

I found a link for the talk mentioned by Elder Matthew Cowley. His talk was reprinted in the October 2004 Ensign. http://www.lds.org/ensign/2004/10/miracles?lang=eng&query=Miracles+priesthood

Unknown said...

Awesome list! There is a great site http://www.votebestldstalks.com where you can vote on your favorite LDS talks that have strengthened your testimony.

Patty Mundell said...

I love these. As a matter of fact, I'm going to use Thomas S. Monson's talk, "The Way of the Master," next Sunday as part of my Gospel Doctrine lesson. I always know it's a good talk when I'm crying by the end. :-) It really touched my heart.

jeanine said...

Two of my favorite lds talks are from BYU devotionals:
Brad Wilcox "My Grace is Sufficient" https://speeches.byu.edu/talks/brad-wilcox_his-grace-is-sufficient/
Dallin H. Oaks "Timing" https://speeches.byu.edu/talks/dallin-h-oaks_timing/

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