Something distinct that sets apart the members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from other religions is our belief in modern-day prophets and apostles. Like the ancient prophets highlighted in the Bible, prophets today act as seers and revelators, giving divinely-inspired relevant and helpful information and guidance.
President Dieter F. Uchtdorf is one of the modern-day prophets who seems to speak directly to me. It always amazes me how his conference talks discuss principles that I need to hear and learn about, in order to strengthen my faith and become a better person and daughter of our Heavenly Father.
I am a convert to the Church, meaning that I did not grow up as a Mormon. I, instead, grew up Baptist, and throughout my childhood and adolescence received a very strong conviction of the importance of church and the Savior in my life. As I have grown stronger in this Church, my testimony of the Savior has grown even stronger, and my life has been changed for the better as a result of my devout membership.
The conference talk "Come, Join with Us" by Dieter F. Uchtdorf enumerates many reasons why someone would consider joining the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Several of the reasons that speak to me include the following:
1. The Church provides opportunities for doing good.
President Uchtdorf states, "Believing in God is commendable, but most people want to do more than listen to inspirational sermons or dream of their mansions above. They want to put their faith into practice." He further states that church members see service opportunities "not as burdens but as opportunities to fulfill covenants we gladly make to serve God and His children."
2. Being a devout member of the Church brings blessings.
In this conference talk, several of the blessings discussed are peace, purpose in life, profound joy, and eternal salvation. Furthermore, President Uchtdorf states, "Those who follow this path faithfully avoid many of the pitfalls, sorrows, and regrets of life." Therefore, not only are righteous members of the Church receiving the positive blessings of peace and joy, but they are also avoiding the negative avoidable regrets of life. President Uchtdorf provides comfort in his statements, "Those who suffer or grieve find healing here. Those burdened with sin find forgiveness, liberty, and rest." How wonderful!
3. Having faith and casting out doubt are of utmost importance.
With so many nay-sayers and religious critics in the world, it may become easy for Christians (of any denomination, not just Mormons) to lose their faith. President Uchtdorf gives the following advice: "Please, first doubt your doubts before you doubt your faith. We must never allow doubt to hold us prisoner and keep us from the divine love, peace, and gifts that come through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ." We must hold strong to our faith and know with a certainty that our Heavenly Father loves us and desires us to return to him after this brief visit to Earth.
For the full conference talk, including more reasons to consider investigating the Church (or remaining faithful in the Church), please see President Dieter F. Uchtdorf's talk here:
Come, Join with Us