photo taken of 13 petal sunflower on Hike #2 on September 23, 2011
"Even before they were born, they, with many others,
received their first lessons in the world of spirits and were prepared to come forth
in the due time of the Lord to labor in his vineyard for the salvation of the souls of men."
Doctrine and Covenants 138: 56
Yesterday concluded the 181th General Conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. We were taught collectively as a body of members of the Church by our leaders who have the the responsibility and authority to lead us in these latter days. I consider the semi-annual conferences to be a world wide "group lesson" to each of us. I am grateful for the inspiration and counsel given.
Two words have been on my mind lately. Inspiration vs Revelation.
Is there a difference? If so, what is it?
Inspiration: a divine influence directly and immediately exerted upon the mind or soul.
Revelation: Something revealed, especially a dramatic disclosure of something not previously known or realized. A manifestation of divine will or truth.
What we receive collectively in the conference talks is what I would call INSPIRED counsel. However, in these latter days, we have been counseled and the scriptures teach us that each of us can (and need to) receive personal REVELATION or "private tutoring"
Just like in learning any new sport, musical instrument or academic subject.. one learns more and quicker through private tutoring than from group lessons. The same principle applies to spiritual learning, especially when the tutor is the Master Teacher.
We need to be like one of the 5 wise virgins who have recieved the truth, and been not decieved because they have taken the Holy Spirit to be our guide. When we are sincere, doubting nothing and with faith, we can be personally tutored by the Lord and recieve answers to our questions. We can have a relationship/friendship with Him. In this process we will be able to recognize His voice, and He will recognize ours. By establishing this relationship with Him, we will not hear the words at the last days, "And I never knew you, depart from me" (even if we have done wonderful works in His name.)