L. Whitney Clayton

Presidency of the Seventy (April 5, 2008 – present)

First Quorum of the Seventy (March 31, 2001 – present)

General Conference Addresses

  • April 2017 General Conference
    • Whatsoever He Saith unto You, Do It
      • “Mary humbly responded that she would do what God asked, without demanding to know specifics and undoubtedly in spite of having countless questions about the implications for her life. She committed herself without exactly understanding why He was asking that of her or how things would work out. She accepted God’s word unconditionally and in advance, with little knowledge of what lay ahead. With simple trust in God, Mary said, “Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word.””
      • “When we decide to do “whatsoever [God] saith unto” us, we earnestly commit to align our everyday behavior with God’s will. Such simple acts of faith as studying the scriptures daily, fasting regularly, and praying with real intent deepen our well of spiritual capacity to meet the demands of mortality. Over time, simple habits of belief lead to miraculous results. They transform our faith from a seedling into a dynamic power for good in our lives. Then, when challenges come our way, our rootedness in Christ provides steadfastness for our souls.”
      • “It may seem hard to draw a connection between the basic daily acts of obedience and solutions to the big, complicated problems we face. But they are related. In my experience, getting the little daily habits of faith right is the single best way to fortify ourselves against the troubles of life, whatever they may be. Small acts of faith, even when they seem insignificant or entirely disconnected from the specific problems that vex us, bless us in all we do.”
      • “God will always bless us for our steadfast obedience to His gospel and loyalty to His Church, but He rarely shows us His timetable for doing so in advance. He doesn’t show us the whole picture from the outset. That is where faith, hope, and trusting in the Lord come in.”
  • April 2015 General Conference
    • Choose to Believe
      • “But all of us will, at some time or another, have to traverse our own spiritual wilderness and undertake our own rugged emotional journeys. In those moments, however dark or seemingly hopeless they may be, if we search for it, there will always be a spiritual light that beckons to us, giving us the hope of rescue and relief. That light shines from the Savior of all mankind, who is the Light of the World. Perceiving spiritual light is different from seeing physical light. Recognizing the Savior’s spiritual light begins with our willingness to believe.”
      • “Every day each of us faces a test. It is the test of our lifetimes: will we choose to believe in Him and allow the light of His gospel to grow within us, or will we refuse to believe and insist on traveling alone in the dark?”
      • “Our lives can be like that too. There may be times when we have been hurt, when we are tired, and when our lives seem dark and cold. There may be times when we cannot see any light on the horizon, and we may feel like giving up. If we are willing to believe, if we desire to believe, if we choose to believe, then the Savior’s teachings and example will show us the pathway forward.”
      • “Their exhortations reflect a fundamental fact: God does not force us to believe. Instead He invites us to believe by sending living prophets and apostles to teach us, by providing scriptures, and by beckoning to us through His Spirit.”
      • “Belief and testimony and faith are not passive principles. They do not just happen to us. Belief is something we choose—we hope for it, we work for it, and we sacrifice for it. We will not accidentally come to believe in the Savior and His gospel any more than we will accidentally pray or pay tithing.”
      • “Go right on believing in Him and in His gospel and His Church. Align your actions with that belief. In those moments when the light of your faith has dimmed, let your hope for the Savior’s love and grace, found in His gospel and His Church, overcome your doubt.”
  • April 2013 General Conference
    • Marriage: Watch and Learn
      • “First, I have observed that in the happiest marriages both the husband and wife consider their relationship to be a pearl beyond price, a treasure of infinite worth. They both leave their fathers and mothers and set out together to build a marriage that will prosper for eternity. They understand that they walk a divinely ordained path. They know that no other relationship of any kind can bring as much joy, generate as much good, or produce as much personal refinement. Watch and learn: the best marriage partners regard their marriages as priceless.”
      • “Next, faith. Successful eternal marriages are built on the foundation of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ and adherence to His teachings. I have observed that couples who have made their marriages priceless practice the patterns of faith: they attend sacrament and other meetings every week, hold family home evening, pray and study the scriptures together and as individuals, and pay an honest tithing. Their mutual quest is to be obedient and good. They do not consider the commandments to be a buffet from which they can pick and choose only the most appealing offerings.”
      • “Third, repentance. I have learned that happy marriages rely on the gift of repentance. It is an essential element in every good marital relationship. Spouses who regularly conduct honest self-examination and promptly take needed steps to repent and improve experience a healing balm in their marriages. Repentance helps restore and maintain harmony and peace.”
      • “Fourth, respect. I have observed that in wonderful, happy marriages, husbands and wives treat each other as equal partners. Practices from any place or any time in which husbands have dominated wives or treated them in any way as second-class partners in marriage are not in keeping with divine law and should be replaced by correct principles and patterns of behavior.”
      • “Fifth, love. The happiest marriages I have seen radiate obedience to one of the happiest commandments—that we “live together in love.” Speaking to husbands, the Lord commanded, “Thou shalt love thy wife with all thy heart, and shalt cleave unto her and none else.” A Church handbook teaches: “The word cleave means to be completely devoted and faithful to someone. Married couples cleave to God and one another by serving and loving each other and by keeping covenants in complete fidelity to one another and to God.” Both the husband and wife “leave behind their single life and establish their marriage as [their] first priority. … They allow no other person or interest to have greater priority … than keeping the covenants they have made with God and each other.” Watch and learn: successful couples love each other with complete devotion.”
  • October 2011 General Conference
    • The Time Shall Come
      • “This work of the Lord is indeed great and marvelous, but it moves forward essentially unnoticed by many of mankind’s political, cultural, and academic leaders. It progresses one heart and one family at a time, silently and unobtrusively, its sacred message blessing people everywhere.”
      • “Our most important message, which we are both divinely commissioned and commanded to take everywhere in the world, is that there is a Savior. He lived in the meridian of time. He atoned for our sins, was crucified, and was resurrected. That matchless message, which we proclaim with authority from God, is the real reason this Church grows as it does.”
  • October 2009 General Conference
    • That Your Burdens May Be Light
      • “Life presses all kinds of burdens on each of us, some light but others relentless and heavy. People struggle every day under burdens that tax their souls. Many of us struggle under such burdens. They can be emotionally or physically ponderous. They can be worrisome, oppressive, and exhausting. And they can continue for years.”
      • “In a general sense, our burdens come from three sources. Some burdens are the natural product of the conditions of the world in which we live. Illness, physical disability, hurricanes, and earthquakes come from time to time through no fault of our own. We can prepare for these risks and sometimes we can predict them, but in the natural pattern of life we will all confront some of these challenges.”
      • “Other burdens are imposed on us by the misconduct of others. Abuse and addictions can make home anything but a heaven on earth for innocent family members. Sin, incorrect traditions, repression, and crime scatter burdened victims along the pathways of life. Even less-serious misdeeds such as gossip and unkindness can cause others genuine suffering.”
      • “Our own mistakes and shortcomings produce many of our problems and can place heavy burdens on our own shoulders. The most onerous burden we impose upon ourselves is the burden of sin. We have all known the remorse and pain which inevitably follow our failure to keep the commandments.”
  • October 2007 General Conference
    • Blessed Are All the Pure in Heart
      • “There’s a spiritual snare today called pornography, and many, allured by its provocative messages, enter this deadly trap. Like any trap, it is easy to enter but difficult to escape. Some rationalize that they can casually view pornography without suffering its adverse effects. They say initially, “This isn’t so bad,” or, “Who cares? It won’t make any difference,” or, “I’m just curious.” But they are mistaken.”
      • “Along with losing the Spirit, pornography users also lose perspective and proportion. Like King David, they try to conceal their sin, forgetting that nothing is hidden from the Lord (see 2 Nephi 27:27). Real consequences start to accumulate as self-respect ebbs away, sweet relationships sour, marriages wither, and innocent victims begin to pile up. Finding that what they have been viewing no longer satisfies, they experiment with more extreme images. They slowly grow addicted even if they don’t know it or they deny it, and like David’s, their behavior deteriorates as their moral standards disintegrate.”
      • “Thus, the fact that others watch movies or open Web sites that aren’t appropriate is no excuse for us. Priesthood holders’ lives should emulate the standards of the Savior and His Church, not the standards of the world.”
  • October 2001 General Conference
    • “Help Thou Mine Unbelief”
      • “Each day we decide what we will do and what we will not do, among myriad alternatives. When we choose to obey the commandments cheerfully as our first priority, neither murmuring about nor measuring the things He commands, we become the handmaids of the Lord and fishers of men and cast our nets on the right side of our own ships. We simply go and do the things the Lord has commanded, even when we are weary, trusting that He will help us to do exactly as He asks. As we do so, the Lord helps our unbelief, and our faith becomes powerful, vibrant, and unshakable.”
      • “No matter who we are or where we live, there is much about our daily lives that is routine and repetitive. As we go about this dailiness, we must be deliberate about doing the things that matter most. These must-do things include making room first for the minimum daily requirements of faithful behavior: true obedience, humble prayer, serious scripture study, and selfless service to others. No other daily vitamins strengthen the muscles of our faith as fast as these actions. We also must remember that genuine fasting fosters strong faith. This is especially important as we faithfully seek to fix deeply embedded character flaws which go “not out but by prayer and fasting.”
      • “Developing faith in the Lord Jesus Christ is a step-by-step, line-upon-line, and precept-upon-precept process. We promote the process of strengthening our faith when we do what is right—increased faith always follows as a consequence.”

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