Elder Robert D. Hales of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles opened the second session of General Conference by addressing the young adults of the Church and focused his talk on making decisions that would be helpful to their futures.
“You are living through a critical period of your life. The choices you make—mission, education, marriage, career, and service in the Church—will shape your eternal destiny,” Elder Hales said. “This means you must always be looking ahead.”
Elder Hales said he wanted to offer some advice to young adults to help them make correct choices.
He counseled young adults on topics such as financial debt, receiving an education, dating and preparing for marriage.
Elder Hales said young adults should make goals concerning the future and that as they turn to the Lord, they will receive guidance from the Spirit.
Elder Jeffrey R. Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles said that no love comes closer to the Savior’s than that of a mother.
He mentioned that both do the same: they bear, carry and deliver.
“Maternal love has to be divine,” Elder Holland said. “There is no other explanation for it. What mothers do is an essential element of Christ’s work.”
Elder Holland closed by saying he could pay no higher tribute than to mothers.
Elder Bradley D. Foster of the Second Quorum of the Seventy spoke about the importance of teaching children the Gospel of Jesus Christ so that they will understand it.
“Do we recognize that our children are the largest group of investigators of the Church?” Elder Foster said.
He shared an experience he had while serving as a Stake President at BYU-Idaho that taught him to teach his children principles of the gospel according to the challenges they are facing at different times in their lives.
The experience involved the example of a young man named Pablo whose father would give him advice and counsel as new challenges and temptations arose in Pablo’s life.
Elder Foster said he was impressed with this teaching method and incorporated it into his family.
“I know I can’t turn back time, but this I now know—that it’s never too early and it’s never too late—to lead, guide, and walk beside our children because families are forever,” he said.
Elder Hugo Montoya of the Seventy delivered a message on the importance of helping others while being tested and tempted in life.
He offered four ways burdens could be made light by helping others.
First, attend the temple regularly and participate in preparing names to take as well as indexing.
Third, express feelings of compassion to others.
Fourth, repent and partake of the sacrament worthily.
“I know that we can help each other as children of our Heavenly Father in our trials and temptations,” Elder Montoya said.
Elder Vern P. Stanfill of the Seventy shared a story in which he biked through a dark tunnel and compared it to being surrounded by spiritual darkness.
He spoke of how his experience biking through a dark tunnel in Montana related to being in a state of spiritual darkness.
Elder Stanfill said that anyone experiencing spiritual darkness can choose to bring more light back into their life by trusting in the Lord, and as they rely on him will develop greater spiritual strength.
In his talk, Elder James B. Martino of the Seventy spoke about the need of a willing heart to receive answers and revelation.
He suggested that obedience assists in this process.
Martino quoted 1 Nephi 15:10-11, “…If ye will not harden your hearts, and ask me in faith, believing that ye shall receive, with diligence in keeping my commandments, surely these things shall be made known unto you.”
He also added that trials, the study of scripture, prayer and fasting will turn us to the Lord.
Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles closed the session and spoke about the strengthening power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ.
Elder Oaks quoted Alma 7:12, “And he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities.”
He said the pains and afflictions the Savior felt were not only related to the sins of the world, but also the natural struggles and pain that are part of mortal life.