Grunt

Sacrament Talk

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Is it usual to not be given a topic for Sacrament talks?   I was just asked to give one at the last minute and was asked to choose my own topic.

The pressure is real.

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32 minutes ago, Grunt said:

Is it usual to not be given a topic for Sacrament talks?   I was just asked to give one at the last minute and was asked to choose my own topic.

The pressure is real.

Typically the exception to the rule.
I can't recall the last time it was left open to "choose your own topic".
Good luck!

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7 hours ago, Fether said:

I’m personally hate picking my topic. I can get much deeper in preparation if I have a topic

That's where I'm at.  I've been jotting things down as they pop in my head, hoping that they develop into an inspired topic.  I'm very concerned that my bias may be driving my inspiration, and I'm holding off in hopes that something develops.

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3 hours ago, Grunt said:

That's where I'm at.  I've been jotting things down as they pop in my head, hoping that they develop into an inspired topic.  I'm very concerned that my bias may be driving my inspiration, and I'm holding off in hopes that something develops.

My experience had always been:

1: I’m super smart on this topic, I’ll talk on this

2: spend all week preparing on that topic

3: 1 day before talk I get inspiration to talk on something else but I brush it off

4: morning of I can’t get the new topic out of my head so I rush and rewrite my talk

Edited by Fether

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Its my observation that for speaking assignments given at the last minute, Bishopric members often leave it up to the speaker to set their own topic, probably in the hope or belief that that makes it easier for the person preparing the talk. It gives them the opportunity choose a subject that they are already familiar and comfortable with. 

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On 10/16/2020 at 4:42 PM, Grunt said:

Is it usual to not be given a topic for Sacrament talks?   I was just asked to give one at the last minute and was asked to choose my own topic.

The pressure is real.

I hope you find comfort as you give your talk. The majority of the talks I have been given have been "choose your topic." I, personally, love choosing my own topic. In my personal studies, I usually have a topic that the Spirit has already impressed upon my mind and heart. I have been studying/pondering that topic for sometime before I receive the speaking assignment.

My favorite though, is when I get a call at 8:30 am (church starts at 9 am) and I receive a speaking assignment saying, "We would like you to speak in sacrament, are you able to do so this morning? A person is sick and isn't able to make it to Church.'

Edited by Anddenex

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2 hours ago, Anddenex said:

I hope you find comfort as you give your talk. The majority of the talks I have been given have been "choose your topic." I, personally, love choosing my own topic. In my personal studies, I usually have a topic that the Spirit has already impressed upon my mind and heart. I have been studying/pondering that topic for sometime before I receive the speaking assignment.

My favorite though, is when I get a call at 8:30 am (church starts at 9 am) and I receive a speaking assignment saying, "We would like you to speak in sacrament, are you able to do so this morning? A person is sick and isn't able to make it to Church.'

I too love the you=[ick talks, letting the Spirit guide me.

The 30 minutes notice is... a mixed bag.  The upside is that it is so quick and from the heart, and not something you fiddle with a million times over.  The downside is if you feel silly when-the-straight-from-the-heart has some tongue ties involved :) . 

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Hopefully it went well for you!

I'm not a fan of open-ended speaking assignments.  When I was asked to give an FHE lesson in the YSA ward, I asked for a topic, and the person said, "Pray about it."  So I talked about prayer.  :)

Last minute teaching assignments, though....whew!  I almost love the challenge of those!  I find them much easier because I can invoke participation, though.

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On 10/16/2020 at 4:42 PM, Grunt said:

Is it usual to not be given a topic for Sacrament talks?   I was just asked to give one at the last minute and was asked to choose my own topic.

The pressure is real.

In ancient times when I was serving as a missionary, I went to the home of a stake president to listen to conference.  What is interesting is that after these many years I do not remember a single conference talk that we listened to together - but I do remember so well the discussion afterwards with the stake president.  He talked to me about preparing for conference and giving talks.  He believed that such is the same.  He asked if I knew that the Thursday before conference that the general authorities met in the upper assembly hall of the Salt Lake Temple for a fast and testimony meeting.  I did not know that.  He recommended that the Thursday ought to be a day of fasting for our leader that they will have the Holy Ghost to guide them through their talks.

But then he asked me to consider something.  He asked me to imagine that after conference had concluded that I received a telephone call from the prophet.  That the prophet asked that I speak at the next conference on a subject of my choosing.  He asked if I knew what subject I would pick or if I would fast and pray before choosing.  Of course I would fast and pray even if I had a favorite topic - perhaps many time to determine, for sure, a topic.  He then challenged me to outline, write or otherwise prepare my conference talk.  He then said that I should carry that talk with me as I attended my Sabbath meetings and if there was ever a time of short notice - that I was asked to give a talk, I would always have my conference talk prepared. 

There have been several time that I have had opportunity to give my conference talk but there have been more times that my prepared conference talk has remained forever ungiven except to myself.  I change my conference talk often.  Mostly I think my talks are meant mostly for me.  But, on several occasions I have given my current conference talk - sometimes when attending sacrament meeting not knowing I would speak.  

Perhaps the most interesting thing about preparing a conference talk is listening to the talks being given and comparing similarities with mine.  Usually this results in me preparing an new talk.  May I suggest that everyone prepare a conference talk and then if asked to speak as @Grunthas - your pressure will be behind you and you will be well prepared.

 

The Traveler

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19 minutes ago, seashmore said:

Hopefully it went well for you!

I'm not a fan of open-ended speaking assignments.  When I was asked to give an FHE lesson in the YSA ward, I asked for a topic, and the person said, "Pray about it."  So I talked about prayer.  :)

Last minute teaching assignments, though....whew!  I almost love the challenge of those!  I find them much easier because I can invoke participation, though.

It was pushed to next week, which makes it even worse.   Over the last few days I've carried my notebook and just entered anything that popped in my head.  Sadly, as I read them this afternoon, they all seem to focus on things that wouldn't make the most uplifting Sacrament talk:  setting the example in your household, repenting, only following the Prophet when it's convenient, finding reasons to not follow the Prophet, choosing faith, etc.   

"Hey, remember Grunt?  He called the entire ward to repentance and got exed.   He made it 1030 days, though.  It was a good run.  Who let him in the Bishopric, anyway?"

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1 hour ago, Grunt said:

It was pushed to next week, which makes it even worse.   Over the last few days I've carried my notebook and just entered anything that popped in my head.  Sadly, as I read them this afternoon, they all seem to focus on things that wouldn't make the most uplifting Sacrament talk:  setting the example in your household, repenting, only following the Prophet when it's convenient, finding reasons to not follow the Prophet, choosing faith, etc.   

"Hey, remember Grunt?  He called the entire ward to repentance and got exed.   He made it 1030 days, though.  It was a good run.  Who let him in the Bishopric, anyway?"

*Time out*

Bolded part: did I miss something!?!?!

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1 minute ago, Jane_Doe said:

*Time out*

Bolded part: did I miss something!?!?!

It's 2020.  The year of odd occurrences.  If this wasn't a sign the second coming was on it's way, then nothing is.

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Just now, Grunt said:

It's 2020.  The year of odd occurrences.  If this wasn't a sign the second coming was on it's way, then nothing is.

Ok, that's hilarious.

And so fitting.  I'm sure you're doing wonderful. 

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7 hours ago, Grunt said:

It was pushed to next week, which makes it even worse.   Over the last few days I've carried my notebook and just entered anything that popped in my head.  Sadly, as I read them this afternoon, they all seem to focus on things that wouldn't make the most uplifting Sacrament talk:  setting the example in your household, repenting, only following the Prophet when it's convenient, finding reasons to not follow the Prophet, choosing faith, etc.   

"Hey, remember Grunt?  He called the entire ward to repentance and got exed.   He made it 1030 days, though.  It was a good run.  Who let him in the Bishopric, anyway?"

Only a thought, reject/accept as you see fit.

Two questions to ask:
1) What has the Lord impressed upon your heart before you were even asked to speak?
2) What has changed you recently.

Lean towards that.

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Since the onset of COVID, I have developed a new technique that I am hoping may help me avoid future callings: being super opinionated on social media and calling people out for disregarding the teachings of the prophets.  😀

Honestly, one of my favorite things that I heard Hugh Nibley do for one of his talks was he just put his voice to the words of Brigham Young:
https://speeches.byu.edu/talks/hugh-nibley/exaltation-eternal-life-words-brigham-young/

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8 hours ago, person0 said:

Since the onset of COVID, I have developed a new technique that I am hoping may help me avoid future callings: being super opinionated on social media and calling people out for disregarding the teachings of the prophets.  😀

 

That's why I'm amazed I was allowed to choose my own topic.  I am continuously drawn to two talks, both 40 years old.   I've tried to write on other things, but my heart keeps going back to those two talks.

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In my experience, it's depends mostly on the bishop.  Some like to be more hands on, while others don't.  That usually filters down to the councilors. 

I'm sure you'll do great.

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No matter whether I'm given a topic or not, when I have enough time to prepare, I start preparing one talk, and by the time I'm done preparing, I'm ready to deliver a totally different talk.  I'd like to claim the preparation helps me give the talk the Lord wants given, but I can only hope that's the case.  I do know that whenever I research what the prophets and scriptures have said about what I want to say, I end up changing what I want to say.

Edited by NeuroTypical

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1 hour ago, Grunt said:

Well, the Stake President was there and nobody pulled my Temple Recommend, so I think I'm in the clear.

Yet...

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