Our testimonies can be blessed by experiences that are solely focused on the Lord. What we do afterwards, though, is what defines us as true disciples.
Experiences where we can dedicate our entire focus to the Lord are unique and powerful. President Steven J. Lund teaches how we can build off of these experiences in his October 2022 General Conference talk, “Lasting Discipleship.” He explains how these opportunities—youth camps, spiritual conferences, full-time missions, etc.—provide opportunities to feel the Holy Ghost testify of Christ as we gather in his name (see Matthew 18:20). These experiences can change us if we let them. Afterward though, we may ask, “What do I do now?”
President Lund shows how one stake youth leader answered this question. In preparation for Girls’ Camp, she made a promise to the parents: “On Saturday, those girls that you see getting off that bus will not be the ones you dropped off on Tuesday. They will be new creatures. And if you help them continue from that higher plane, they will astonish you.” The camp experience would be transformative, but whether the girls would continue to grow spiritually depended on what happened afterward.
The same is true for all of us. After such experiences, we have to return to the commitments and demands of “normal” life. President Lund says, “Like brightly hulled steel ships at sea, we live in a spiritually corrosive environment where the most gleaming convictions must be mindfully maintained or they can become etched, then corrode, and then crumble away.” However, if we keep remembering and applying the things that we have learned and the patterns that have blessed us, our spirituality will grow, not crumble. President Lund counsels, “Keep doing at home what has worked so powerfully for you here.” As we continue in our efforts of discipleship after the impactful experiences, we will maintain our convictions and cultivate our testimonies.
Read or watch President Lund’s full talk, “Lasting Discipleship.”
—Lydia Mercado, Latter-day Saint Insights
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Find more insights
Learn more about discipleship with Aneesa Pennington’s article “Death, Patriarchy, and the Struggle of Discipleship.”
Read “Discipleship and Everyday Demands” by Lenae Rubey to learn about maintaining balance in life.