We should see the face of the Lord

This post is part of the General Conference Odyssey. This week covers the Saturday Afternoon Session of the April 1977 Conference.
In Elder Loren C. Dunn's address "Did Not Our Heart Burn Within Us?", he tells the following story about John Murdock, a friend of Joseph Smith's:
For a time he lived in the home of Joseph Smith and relates this incident: “During the winter that I boarded with Brother Joseph … we had a number of prayer meetings, in the Prophet’s chamber. … In one of those meetings the Prophet told us, ‘If we would humble ourselves before God, and exercise strong faith, we should see the face of the Lord.’ And about midday the visions of my mind were opened, and the eyes of my understanding were enlightened, and I saw the form of a man, most lovely, the visage of his face was sound and fair as the sun. His hair a bright silver grey, curled in a most majestic form; His eyes a keen penetrating blue, and the skin of his neck a most beautiful white and he was covered from the neck to the feet with a loose garment, pure white: Whiter than any garment I have ever before seen. His countenance was most penetrating, and yet most lovely. And while I was endeavoring to comprehend the whole personage from head to feet it slipped from me, and the vision was closed up. But it left on my mind the impression of love, for months, that I never before felt to that degree.” (John Murdock, An Abridged Record of the Life of John Murdock, p. 26.)
Brother Murdock heard the prophet's words in a meeting. He believed them and followed them immediately. And they came true!

I know things don't happen this way all the time, so quickly and noticeably—and probably for good reason. But it seems important to believe that they can. Because there is something so true and simple and beautiful about this retelling, right down to the way the vision fades long before Brother Murdock is ready, but the impression of love remains. This is the result of hope and perhaps expectation: but it's an unassuming kind of expectation. The miracle and the humility are entwined.

Other posts in this series:


  1. Hi Marilyn! I just wanted to say hello. My name is Emily Bennett and I'm a client of Cathy's. She told
    me about you and your sweet family during one of our prenatal appointments so I took the liberty of finding you on Instagram and subsequently discovered you keep a blog. I spent an hour or so this afternoon perusing your writing and I feel like you are a kindred spirit. I wanted to introduce myself and express gratitude for your beautiful words and the spirit I felt while reading them. Blessings to you as you draw near to delivering your baby. Your friend, Emily

    1. Hi Emily! How fun to "meet" you! :) And congratulations on your upcoming baby! I love anyone Cathy loves, so I'm sure we will be friends. Hopefully we'll get to meet in real life at some point! Until then, I'm so glad you said hi. Maybe I'll see you on Instagram etc. :)


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