“Some years ago our family encountered a major challenge. I went to the temple and there prayed earnestly for help. I was given a moment of truth. I received a clear impression of my weaknesses, and I was shocked. In that spiritually instructive moment, I saw a prideful woman doing things her own way, not necessarily the Lord’s way, and privately taking credit for any so-called accomplishment. I knew I was looking at myself. I cried out in my heart to Heavenly Father and said, ‘I don’t want to be that woman, but how do I change?’
“Through the pure spirit of revelation in the temple, I was taught of my utter need for a Redeemer. I turned immediately to the Savior Jesus Christ in my thoughts and felt my anguish melt away and a great hope spring up in my heart. He was my only hope, and I longed to cling only to Him. It was clear to me that a self-absorbed natural woman ‘is an enemy to God’ and to people in her sphere of influence. In the temple that day I learned it was only through the Atonement of Jesus Christ that my prideful nature could change and that I would be enabled to do good. I felt His love keenly, and I knew He would teach me by the Spirit and change me if I gave my heart to Him, holding back nothing.
“I still fight my weaknesses, but I trust in the divine help of the Atonement. This pure instruction came because I entered the holy temple, seeking relief and answers. I entered the temple burdened, and I left knowing I had an all-powerful and all-loving Savior. I was lighter and joyful because I had received His light and accepted His plan for me.”
Neill F. Marriott, Second Counselor, Young Women General Presidency
“Sharing Your Light,” October 2014 General Conference
“We also lose sight of that good part when we compare ourselves to others. Her hair is cuter, my legs are fatter, her children are more talented, or her garden’s more productive—sisters, you know the drill. We just can’t do that. We cannot allow ourselves to feel inadequate by focusing on who we aren’t instead of on who we are! We are all sisters in Relief Society. We simply cannot criticize, gossip, or judge and keep the pure love of Christ. Can’t you hear the Lord’s sweet injunction: ‘Martha, Martha … ?’ ”
Bonnie D. Parkin, Relief Society General President
“Choosing Charity: That Good Part,” October 2003 General Conference
“The love Christ commands requires a mighty change and great humility. It requires us to forsake pride and to be stripped of envy. It requires that we neither mock our sisters and brothers nor persecute anyone. Christ knew that for us to find any of those characteristics in ourselves would be onerous and would demand our great effort just to look. He said, ‘If thy hand or thy foot offend thee, cut them off, and cast them from thee.’
“He was not suggesting our mutilation, but rather showing his awareness of how painful clearing ourselves of such offenses could be. When we have made the changes that only we can make, then, by the atoning blood of Christ, we may receive the forgiveness that only he can bring. The reciprocal nature of those actions suggests the high trust and respect the Lord has for our abilities. Anyone who has had experience with the Lord’s love knows of the sure courage that comes when we keep our part of that trust and honor him by seeking his Spirit and by living the best we can.”
Aileen H. Clyde, Second Counselor, Relief Society General Presidency
“Covenant of Love,” April 1995 General Conference
“Patterns are meant to be repeated. A pattern of righteousness is worthy of duplication, yet there are those who suppose that our righteousness involves climbing some imaginary vertical ladder. We then think we hasten our progress by trying to get above or ahead of others. I believe this is pride. . . . Righteousness is reproduced horizontally, not vertically. When we establish a pattern of righteousness in our lives, we commit to our Heavenly Father to do all in our power to help others reproduce this pattern in their lives. This can happen over and over until, as it says in Isaiah, ‘the inhabitants of the world will learn righteousness.’ (Isa. 26:9.)”
Janette C. Hales, Second Counselor, Young Women General Presidency
“A Pattern of Righteousness,” April 1991 General Conference
“We can never accurately take the measure of our lives based on social, economic, ethnic, age, marital, or physical conditions. Ask yourself, are the comparisons you may make of yourself and others based on the model of the Savior’s life, or do they come from trying to fit your life into the pattern of others’ lives?
“Sometimes comparisons creep up on us. We sit in Relief Society surrounded by our neighbors and friends, all of whom seem to raise the best children, to teach the most profound lessons, and to possess the greatest spirituality. It can feel so discouraging.
“Some of you may say, ‘I’m just average. There’s nothing special about me or my life.’ And yet what is manifested plainly to me is that you are extraordinary, you whose average day is lived in accordance with our Heavenly Father’s laws.”
Elaine L. Jack, Relief Society General President
“These Things Are Manifested unto Us Plainly,” October 1990 General Conference