There is NOTHING on earth like gathering with all the Saints worldwide to figuratively sit at the feet of God's living prophet, apostles, and other specially called general authorities to learn what He would have us know, do and be at this specific time on earth. The Spirit of God is always palpable, and I find myself spiritually bingeing during the entire weekend... like a sponge trying to soak up all the water from a fire hose. It's not possible, but I still try.
But one of the most miraculous parts about modern technology is that I can revisit the powerful messages shared during General Conference as often as I would like. So now my sponge can stay as saturated as I want, constantly soaking up personal revelation dripping from the fountain of the Word of God.
The more the world starves itself of feeling the Spirit and the love of God, the more God tries to pour out upon us. And He does so through His living Prophet and Apostles.
"Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets."-Amos 3:7(Obviously, in this scripture the "secret" the Lord reveals to His prophets is the Fulness of His Gospel, but for my purposes I'm going to digress.)
I think the only things that God keeps truly "secret" from His children, individually and collectively, are those things which we don't allow Him to tell us, or to which we refuse to listen. But that doesn't stop God from trying to teach and share with us. Rather, He calls a Prophet whom He can trust completely to be His mouthpiece to the world, to work tirelessly to teach, guide, serve, and love His children here upon the earth. In this way, God is able to teach and guide His children, while simultaneously testing our ability to have faith in His plan and trust in whom He calls as His servants.
In all His goodness and mercy, He also promises to answer our sincere personal prayers. With the calling of every new prophet and apostle that I have lived through, I have prayed diligently to know for myself if he was truly called of God. God has never failed to answer me through the Holy Ghost, beyond any shadow of a doubt. It is this process which has blessed me to gain a very personal testimony of the sacred calling which these men have received from God, and which has allowed me to act in faith in an effort to follow their counsel.
For those who know me, they know that I definitely have a rebellious streak. I have never been forced to do something as a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that I have not wanted to do. I have personally read and studied the Holy Scriptures, searching the Word of God and His prophets, for countless hours over the years. I have prayed and poured out my heart to my Heavenly Father in seeking my personal testimony and confirmation on my own decisions. I keep the Lord's commandments because I LOVE Him, and for no other reason. Well, the blessings I receive in return are pretty encouraging, too... ;) It seems that everywhere I have lived, I have met people who seem flabbergasted that I actually WANT to remain chaste before marriage or refrain from drinking alcohol or pay my tithing. But if they knew our Heavenly Father like I have come to know Him, if they comprehended our divine nature, if they understood God's incredible plan for His children, I am confident that they, too, would WANT to do all He asks of us. It's actually quite *liberating* to live a life free from the influence of harmful substances and full of the confidence that comes from knowing who I am and owning my ability to choose, not to mention the windows of heaven continuously pouring out blessings upon me... you won't hear me complaining about that. :)
The Apostle Paul expressed my testimony better than I probably ever could:
"Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?Having a living Prophet on the earth is not a way to separate us from our Heavenly Father or having daily personal communion with Him. Rather, it's one of the countless ways that He has decided to manifest and prove His love for all His children. Seen from this viewpoint, General Conference is like Christmas, New Years, Easter, my birthday, and my mission all rolled into one for me. All the love, peace, personal revelation, self introspection, and extreme joy that comes with each one of those all wrapped up into 2 glorious weekends a year. So yes, if General Conference were a holiday, it would definitely be my favorite.
"Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us.
"For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come,
"Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." -Romans 8:35, 37-39
I apologize for the short novella it took for me to make my point. haha