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Powerful Quotes from Every General Conference Talk by President Ballard

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In his nearly 50 years of service as a General Authority for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, President M. Russell Ballard provided powerful instruction on gospel principles. We’ve gathered one quote from every single General Conference talk he gave as we celebrate his life and ministry. 

“I would like to say, my brethren, that I have been sitting in a big red chair for just a few minutes, and the greatest desire of my heart is that I will learn through my obedience and my service to become comfortable in that big red chair. I pray that the Lord will bless me that I might properly represent President Kimball, his counselors, the Council of the Twelve, and all my brethren of the General Authorities; that as they send me forth on whatever errand it might be, I might do the will and the bidding of the Lord.” – Learn Obedience and Service | April 1976

“May I suggest to all of the youth of the Church that I believe you can come into the mission field loaded with knowledge about the eternal truths of the gospel—knowing for yourself that Jesus is the Christ, and that His church has been restored to the earth through a living prophet, and that the Book of Mormon is the word of God.” – The Making of a Missionary | October 1976

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“We must carefully and conscientiously provide solid spiritual training for the eternal growth of our children. Thoughtful planning will be required because providing spiritual development for them is not quite as simple as meeting their physical needs.” – Spiritual Development | October 1978

“No work is more important than helping bring the gospel into the lives of our brothers and sisters. You and I have no better way to demonstrate our love for the Lord than to personally lead someone into the safety of full activity in the Church.” – You Can Be the Voice | April 1980

“Can the Master touch others’ lives through you and me? Oh yes, he can, and he will if we will just do our part.” – The Savior’s Touch | October 1980

“Remember—a positive attitude, a well-thought-out plan, and consistent self-discipline can help us improve our circumstances. Applying these keys in our daily work will help produce more income, and practicing them in our homes will help reduce expenses. When we combine these principles with keeping the commandments of God, we can learn to become better managers of our time and resources and become financially secure.” – Providing for Our Needs | April 1981

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“I believe there is no greater call in the Church than to be an effective teacher. Effective teaching by the Spirit can stir the souls of men with a desire to live the principles of the gospel of Jesus Christ more completely.” – Teaching—No Greater Call | April 1983

“May I suggest a simple way in which each one of us can exercise our faith and start our personal missionary service. Write down a date in the near future on which you will have someone ready to be taught the gospel. Do not worry that you do not have someone already in mind. Let the Lord help you as you pray diligently for guidance. Fast and pray, seeking guidance and direction from our Heavenly Father.” – Write Down a Date | October 1984

“I am convinced, boys, that the Lord has no better place to get acquainted with you than when you serve him in the mission field. When you are serving your mission, he will send you on errands to act in his name. He will give you experience with the power of the Holy Ghost. He will authorize you to teach, to convert, and then to perform the sacred ordinances of salvation in his name. He will come to know you. He will come to know that he can trust you and can rely on you. He will help you learn the lessons that will qualify you for the great work that you must perform as you do your part in carrying the message of the Restoration to everyone in the world.” – Prepare to Serve | April 1985

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“The errands that I have been sent on to act in the name of the Lord enable me to witness to you today that I know, as I know that I stand before you, that Jesus is the Christ, that he lives. He is very close to this work and very close to all of us who are asked to perform the work throughout the earth in his name.” – In Response to the Call | October 1985

“We are living in a most exciting time. What a joy it is to know that the power of the holy priesthood is operating throughout the Church to bless the lives of the Saints.” – The Kingdom Rolls Forth in South America | April 1986

“The key to success in bringing souls unto Christ is to act at a time when you feel the Spirit and you sense that your friend does also. Remember, brothers and sisters, through our faith, our trust in the Lord, and our good works, we can bring many souls unto the Lord. We can enjoy the blessings of living with them in the kingdom of our Father.” – We Proclaim the Gospel | October 1986

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“All of us must come to an honest, open self-examination, an awareness within as to who and what we want to be. A periodic review of the covenants we have made with the Lord will help us with our priorities and with balance in our lives.” – Keeping Life’s Demands in Balance | April 1987

“Something special happens to an individual or to a Church unit when the people become more independent and self-reliant. They feel more confident, positive, and assured, and they reflect these feelings in their actions.” – Sacrifice and Self-Sufficiency | October 1987

“When we look to see the evidence of creation all around us, from a grain of sand to the majestic planets, we begin to realize that we are the greatest of all God’s creations; we are created in his image.” – God’s Love for His Children | April 1988

“We must not be too selective in identifying those we feel are worthy or appreciative of our attention. The spirit of true Christian fellowship must include everyone. Our understanding of the gospel should help us see clearly that all people are our brothers and sisters, children of our Heavenly Father. Perhaps more of us could emulate this example.” – The Hand of Fellowship | October 1988

“We should strive to change the corrupt and immoral tendencies in television and in society by keeping things that offend and debase out of our homes.” – The Effects of Television | April 1989

“Preparing ourselves and our families for the challenges of the coming years will require us to replace fear with faith. We must be able to overcome the fear of enemies who oppose and threaten us.” – Duties, Rewards, and Risks | October 1989

“We observe vast, sweeping world events; however, we must remember that the purposes of the Lord in our personal lives generally are fulfilled through the small and simple things, and not the momentous and spectacular.” – Small and Simple Things | April 1990

“We cannot foresee what the Lord has in mind for us. Our only course of action is to be prepared and worthy for whatever he requires. We must govern our actions every day with our future in mind.” – Purity Precedes Power | October 1990

“What a beautiful place this world will be when every father and mother see the importance of teaching their children the principles that will help them be happy and successful.” – Teach the Children | April 1991

“Remember, sisters, we all have our own challenges to work out while passing the tests of mortality, and we probably often think ours are the most difficult. Recognize limitations; no one can do everything. When you have done the best you can, be satisfied and don’t look back and second-guess, wondering how you could have done more. Be at peace within yourselves. Rather than berate yourself for what you didn’t do, congratulate yourself for what you did.” – Be an Example of the Believers | October 1991

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“I bear humble witness that Joseph Smith is one of the great, noble ones to come to the earth. He and his brother Hyrum deserve our honor, respect, and gratitude as do other members of their family who assisted with the restoration of the fulness of the gospel.” – The Family of the Prophet Joseph Smith | October 1991

“Our commitment to the kingdom should match that of our faithful ancestors even though our sacrifices are different.” – The Blessings of Sacrifice | April 1992

“Admittedly we have ample reason to be deeply concerned because we see no immediate answers to the seemingly unsolvable problems confronting the human family. But regardless of this dark picture, which will ultimately get worse, we must never allow ourselves to give up hope!” – The Joy of Hope Fulfilled | October 1992

“If you will pay more attention to your spiritual self, which is eternal, than to your mortal self, which is temporary, you can always resist the temptations of Satan and conquer his efforts to take you into his power.” – Keeping Covenants | April 1993

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“May you feel the comforting assurance that your Heavenly Father loves each one of you, His daughters, and that the way He marks for you is the way to perfect fairness and freedom in this life and in eternity.” – Equality through Diversity | October 1993

“All councils in the Church should encourage free and open discussion by conferring with one another and striving to have clear, concise communication. Councils should discuss objectives and concerns, with mutual understanding being the ultimate goal.” – Strength in Counsel | October 1993

“This is the miracle of Church councils: listening to each other and listening to the Spirit! When we support one another in Church councils, we begin to understand how God can take ordinary men and women and make of them extraordinary leaders. The best leaders are not those who work themselves to death trying to do everything single-handedly; the best leaders are those who follow God’s plan and counsel with their councils.” – Counseling with Our Councils | April 1994

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“Perhaps the most important lesson young Joseph learned in the Sacred Grove is this significant eternal truth: the heavens are not sealed. God does communicate with mortals. He loves us today just as much as He loved those who lived anciently. What comfort that sweet assurance provides in a world filled with confusion and discouragement! What peace and security come to the heart that understands that God in heaven knows us and cares about us, individually and collectively, and that He communicates with us, either directly or through His living prophets, according to our needs.” – Restored Truth | October 1994

“The plan of happiness is available to all of his children. If the world would embrace and live it, peace, joy, and plenty would abound on the earth. Much of the suffering we know today would be eliminated if people throughout the world would understand and live the gospel.” – Answers to Life’s Questions | April 1995

“Clearly, Hyrum Smith was one of the firm pillars of the Restoration. But sadly, many Church members know little about him except that he was martyred with his brother in Carthage Jail. That is significant, but he did far more.” – Hyrum Smith: Firm As the Pillars of Heaven | October 1995

“By the Spirit, Church members know the restored gospel of Jesus Christ is true. We should, therefore, feel compelled to share our spiritual knowledge with all of our Father’s children by inviting them to pull a chair up to the Lord’s table and feast on the words of Christ.” – Feasting at the Lord’s Table | April 1996

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“We need the same dedication today in every one of our footsteps as the pioneers had in theirs.” – Faith in Every Footstep | October 1996

“No matter how difficult the trail, we can take comfort in knowing that others before us have borne life’s most grievous trials and tragedies by looking to heaven.” – You Have Nothing to Fear from the Journey | April 1997

“Standing for truth and right is not solely a Sunday thing. Every day our neighborhoods and communities are in desperate need of our support and our commitment to safety and law and order.” – Standing for Truth and Right | October 1997

“We need to embrace, study, and appreciate the revealed truths that are ours. We need to declare the gospel generously and kindly to all of our Father’s children.” – Marvelous Are the Revelations of the Lord | April 1998

“Our President is dynamically out in front, showing the way. The question we must all ask ourselves is, ‘Are we keeping pace with him?’ Each one of us must be prepared to answer that question.” – Are We Keeping Pace? | October 1998

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“We need to become so deeply converted to the gospel of Christ that the fire of the covenant will burn in our hearts like flame unquenchable. And with that kind of faith we will do what is necessary to remain true and worthy.” – Like a Flame Unquenchable | April 1999

“Beware of those who speak and publish in opposition to God’s true prophets and who actively proselyte others with reckless disregard for the eternal well-being of those whom they seduce.” – Beware of False Prophets and False Teachers | October 1999

“The most important thing every one of us can do is to examine our own commitment and devotion to the Lord Jesus Christ.” – How Is It with Us? | April 2000

“Now is the time for members of the Church to be more bold in reaching out to others, helping them to know the Church is true.” – Now Is the Time | October 2000

“It is no small thing, my brothers and sisters, to have a prophet of God in our midst. Great and wonderful are the blessings that come into our lives as we listen to the word of the Lord given to us through him.” – His Word Ye Shall Receive | April 2001

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“If we are truly disciples of the Lord Jesus Christ, we will reach out with love and understanding to all of our neighbors at all times.” – Doctrine of Inclusion | October 2001

“Peace—real peace, whole-souled to the very core of your being—comes only in and through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.” – The Peaceable Things of the Kingdom | April 2002

“We call upon you, our young brethren of the Aaronic Priesthood, to rise up, to measure up, and to be fully prepared to serve the Lord.” – The Greatest Generation of Missionaries | October 2002

“We must prepare ourselves to assist the missionaries in finding those of our Heavenly Father’s children who will embrace the message of the Restoration.” – The Essential Role of Member Missionary Work | April 2003

“Refuse to support those programs that violate traditional family values. We may be a small voice to begin with; nevertheless, let us speak out and encourage a more uplifting, inspiring, and acceptable media.” – Let Our Voices Be Heard | October 2003

“If we could truly understand the Atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ, we would realize how precious is one son or daughter of God.” – The Atonement and the Value of One Soul | April 2004

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“Testimony—real testimony, born of the Spirit and confirmed by the Holy Ghost—changes lives.” – Pure Testimony | October 2004

“We need more hardworking, testimony-enriched missionaries in order to reach more of our Heavenly Father’s children.” – One More | April 2005

“We should not need a hurricane or other crisis to remind us of what matters most. The gospel and the Lord’s plan of happiness and salvation should remind us. What matters most is what lasts longest, and our families are for eternity.” – What Matters Most Is What Lasts Longest | October 2005

“Creating a gospel-sharing home is the easiest and most effective way that we can share the gospel.” – Creating a Gospel-Sharing Home | April 2006

“May we focus on the simple ways we can serve in the kingdom of God, always striving to change lives, including our own.” – O Be Wise | October 2006

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“We are true and full believers in the Lord Jesus Christ and in His revealed word through the Holy Bible.” – The Miracle of the Holy Bible | April 2007

“The growing prominence of the Church and the increasing inquiries from others present us with great opportunities to build bridges, make friends, and pass on accurate information.” – Faith, Family, Facts, and Fruits | October 2007

“There is no role in life more essential and more eternal than that of motherhood.” – Daughters of God | April 2008

“This is God’s work, and God’s work will not be frustrated. But there is still much to be done.” – The Truth of God Shall Go Forth | October 2008

“Learning the lessons of the past allows you to build personal testimony on a solid bedrock of obedience, faith, and the witness of the Spirit.” – Learning the Lessons of the Past | April 2009

“Fathers and sons can play a critical role in helping each other become the best that they can be.” – Fathers and Sons: A Remarkable Relationship | October 2009

“Mothers and daughters play a critical role in helping each other explore their infinite possibilities, despite the undermining influences of a world in which womanhood and motherhood are being corrupted and manipulated.” – Mothers and Daughters | April 2010

“There is hope for the addicted, and this hope comes through the Atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ.” – O That Cunning Plan of the Evil One | October 2010

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“May we show our love and appreciation for the Savior’s atoning sacrifice through our simple, compassionate acts of service.” – Finding Joy through Loving Service | April 2011

“Let us develop the habit of making it clear that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the name by which the Lord Himself has directed that we be known.” – The Importance of a Name | October 2011

“We may be relatively small in number, but as members of this Church we can reach across these widening gaps. We know the power of Christ-centered service that brings together God’s children regardless of their spiritual or their economic status.” – That the Lost May Be Found | April 2012

“Great things are brought about and burdens are lightened through the efforts of many hands ‘anxiously engaged in a good cause.'” – Be Anxiously Engaged | October 2012

“God has freely given His power to those who accept and honor His priesthood, which leads to the promised blessings of immortality and eternal life.” – This Is My Work and Glory | April 2013

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“Trust the Lord. He is the Good Shepherd. He knows His sheep, and His sheep know His voice; and today the voice of the Good Shepherd is your voice and my voice. And if we are not engaged, many who would hear the message of the Restoration will be passed by.” – Put Your Trust in the Lord | October 2013

“Can you even begin to fathom the extraordinary outpouring of atoning grace that will be ours, individually and collectively, according to the Savior’s promise to all who bear testimony in the process of inviting souls to come unto Him—and then following up on those invitations?” – Following Up | April 2014

“Brothers and sisters, stay in the boat, use your life jackets, and hold on with both hands. Avoid distractions! And if any one of you have fallen out of the boat, we will seek you, find you, minister to you, and pull you safely back onto the Old Ship Zion, where God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ are at the helm and will guide us right.” – Stay in the Boat and Hold On! | October 2014

“What we need now is the greatest generation of young adults in the history of the Church. We need your whole heart and soul.” – The Greatest Generation of Young Adults | April 2015

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“Commandments and covenants are priceless truths and doctrines found in the Old Ship Zion, where God is at the helm.” – God Is at the Helm | October 2015

“When parents are prepared and children listen and participate in the discussion, the family council is truly working!” – Family Councils | April 2016

“In the end, each one of us must respond to the Savior’s question: ‘Will ye also go away?’ We all have to search for our own answer to that question. For some, the answer is easy; for others, it is difficult. I don’t pretend to know why faith to believe comes easier for some than for others. I’m just so grateful to know that the answers are always there, and if we seek them—really seek with real intent and with full purpose of a prayerful heart—we will eventually find the answers to our questions as we continue on the gospel path.” – To Whom Shall We Go? | October 2016

“To return to God’s presence and to receive the eternal blessings that come from making and keeping covenants are the most important goals we can set.” – Return and Receive | April 2017

“A trek back to our Heavenly Father is the most important trek of our lives, and it continues each day, each week, each month, and each year as we increase our faith in Him and in His Beloved Son, Jesus Christ.” – The Trek Continues! | October 2017

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“Life can be filled with faith, joy, happiness, hope, and love when we exercise the smallest amount of real faith in Christ.” – Precious Gifts from God | April 2018

“The vision revealed more fully the depth and breadth of Heavenly Father’s plan for His children and Christ’s redeeming love and the matchless power of His Atonement.” – The Vision of the Redemption of the Dead | October 2018

“Loving God and loving our neighbors is the doctrinal foundation of ministering; home-centered, Church-supported learning; Sabbath-day spiritual worship; and the work of salvation. All of these things are based on the divine commandments to love God and to love our neighbors. Can there be anything more basic, more fundamental, and more simple than that?” – The True, Pure, and Simple Gospel of Jesus Christ | April 2019

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“One of the most important things we can learn in this life is how to emphasize our eternal spiritual nature and control our evil desires.” – Giving Our Spirits Control over Our Bodies | October 2019

“We should always remember the price Joseph and Hyrum Smith paid, along with so many other faithful men, women, and children, to establish the Church.” – Shall We Not Go On in So Great a Cause | April 2020

“Today I expand my call for prayer to all people from every country around the world. No matter how you pray or to whom you pray, please exercise your faith—whatever your faith may be—and pray for your country and for your national leaders.” – Watch Ye Therefore, and Pray Always | October 2020

“Let us call upon our members who are single to serve, lift, and teach. Disregard old notions and ideas that have sometimes unintentionally contributed to their feelings of loneliness and that they do not belong or cannot serve.” – Hope in Christ | April 2021

M. Russell Ballard Quote

“What things can you do within your own life to show that you love the Lord first?” – Lovest Thou Me More Than These? | October 2021

“I pray that you young men and young women and your parents will see and know how missionary service will forever bless your life.” – Missionary Service Blessed My Life Forever | April 2022

“Christ can carry us today through difficult times. He did it for the early pioneers, and He will do it now for each one of us.” – Follow Jesus Christ with Footsteps of Faith | October 2022

“What matters most is our relationships with Heavenly Father and His Beloved Son, our families, and our neighbors, and allowing the Spirit to guide us.” – Remember What Matters Most | April 2023

“How abundantly blessed we are to know all that we know because we have Joseph Smith, the prophet of this last dispensation of time.” – Praise to the Man | October 2023

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Aleah Ingram
Aleah Ingram
Aleah is a graduate of Southern Virginia University, where she studied English, Creative Writing, and Dance. She now works full time as a marketing and product manager, writer, and editor. Aleah served a mission in California and loves baking, Lang Leav poetry, Gaynor Minden pointe shoes, and Bollywood movies.

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