Sister Susan H. Porter, Primary General President for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, delivered Tuesday's devotional address. She shared that as we receive the many gifts our Heavenly Father has prepared for us, we will receive joy.
Sister Porter expressed an understanding that often in the gospel of Jesus Christ we are taught that giving is better than receiving, and we can feel selfish for seeking to receive heavenly gifts.
Kindly correcting this mindset, Sister Porter taught that before we can have anything of value to give, we must first receive.
“Receiving the gifts of God is a catalyst for change! A change of heart, a change of countenance, a change of desires, a new birth.”
Some of the gifts of God we receive include His Spirit, wisdom and knowledge, Sister Porter said. These gifts are a foundational part of becoming a disciple of Jesus Christ. As we receive these gifts, our desire to share them with others will increase.
Sister Porter reminded us that receiving gifts from God is not passive, and one must be willing to do whatever is necessary to obtain them.
“I would like to share three ways we might more fully receive the gifts of God. Choose humility, look up and receive deeply.”
College can be a stressful time in the lives of students, and they can often can feel an enormous amount of pressure both in their school work and spiritually. Sister Porter said that these stressors can lead to feelings of inadequacy, but that Christ wants us to humble ourselves and turn to Him.
“Seeing our weakness is not a reason to be discouraged; it is a reason to be humble. . .
Humility opens the way for us to receive our Heavenly Father’s gifts through the enabling power of His Son, Jesus Christ.”
In our day-to-day lives, it is so easy to get weighed down by a load of to-do’s, that we forget to look up and focus on the mercy that God extends to His children, Sister Porter noted. Reading the scriptures or listening to a general conference talk, can help focus us on the blessings our loving Heavenly Father is anxious to extend.
“As we focus on receiving the Savior’s gifts, we will feel joy and purpose as we seek to understand the changes we need to make and then act.”
Often, the gifts received from the Lord are not seen by others, but they can leave a deep impression. Sister Porter considers every spiritual impression a gift from God and reflected on how these impressions have carried her through difficult times.
“Through those gifts, we know that God is aware of us, that He needs us and that He is walking with us. Those impressions can be the most healing and encouraging of all gifts.”
Sister Porter extended the invitation to go forward with the confidence that as we look up, and seek for the blessings of the Lord, we will find them. She testified that the most important of all these blessings is the gift of Jesus Christ and His Atonement.
“The greatest blessing of seeking to receive the Savior, His gospel and His gifts is that as we receive Him, He will receive us. Through His great and atoning sacrifice, the Savior broke the bands of death and opened the door for all of us to return to live with God, our Father.”