Wednesday, September 24, 2014

The Hope Of God's Light

Today's post is for those who may not know that they have a loving Heavenly Father taking care of them. Watch this true story of a man who came to know that life is so much more when you know your identity as a child of God.

To anyone out there who may be questioning whether God is real or if He cares, I testify with all my heart that He is there. He loves you and He needs you. I have felt His love and it is the sweetest feeling in the world. I can promise you that sincere prayers are answered.

Just like Todd Sylvester's prayer was answered, I know that all my prayers can be answered and so can yours!

"And through the power of the Holy Ghost, ye may know the truth of all things."
Moroni 10:5

When any prayer is answered, it's through the power of the Holy Ghost. I know I've written about the Holy Ghost before, but I'll do a quick review! The Holy Ghost is the third member of the Godhead. He is a personage of spirit, meaning he doesn't have a body. The Holy Ghost's role is to be our helper in this life. He comforts us, teaches us, guides us, warns us, he even helps Heavenly Father answer prayers!

After saying a prayer or reading scriptures or doing anything of importance, have you ever felt a warm fuzzy feeling? That's the Holy Ghost! Those warm fuzzies are how prayers are sometimes answered! We know that for Todd his prayer was answered while a prayer was being said, he felt good and he felt accepted. Through the feelings that the Holy Ghost gave him he knew that God was real and that God loved him.

I can't emphasize enough how much God loves each and every one of His children and wants to answer our prayers. Sometimes He takes awhile to let those answers show because we need to be ready for them, but the answer always comes at just the right moment.

I invite everyone who reads this, whether you believe in God or not, to kneel in prayer and ask God if He is there. I can promise you that through the Holy Ghost you will feel His presence. I can't promise it will be right away, but it will be right when you need to feel His love most.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Part 6: Enduring To The End

Congratulations! You've officially made it to the end of this blog series. As I've had the opportunity to write about the Gospel of Jesus Christ I have strengthened my own testimony and come to know how important this gospel is to everyone on the earth!

"And now, my beloved brethren, after ye have gotten into this strait and narrow path, I would ask if all is done? Behold, I say unto you, Nay; for ye have not come thus far save it were by the word of Christ with unshaken faith in him, relying wholly upon the merits of him who is mighty to save.

Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life."

Even though baptism and receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost are one time things, we never stop progressing and learning. We can continually build our faith, we should continually repent of sins (spoiler alert, you'll continue to make mistakes even after you're baptized!), and we continually work to keep the covenants we have made.

Enduring to the end can be the hardest step in following the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It requires patience! Watch this Mormon Message on patience and think about why enduring to the end in the gospel requires us to be patient with ourselves as well as others.

Too cute, right?! I already have the first marshmallow, I've made covenants with my Heavenly Father and I am extremely blessed. But I know that if I am patient and live like I should I will be blessed yet again with that second marshmallow, eternal life!

"And, if you keep my commandments and endure to the end you shall have eternal life, which gift is the greatest of all the gifts of God."
D&C 14:7

I know that by making the gospel a pattern of living you can draw closer to God. You can continue to progress and grow in the gospel your entire life. If we endure to the end we will be rewarded and be able to live with our Heavenly Father again someday.

I invite everyone who reads this to think about the ways you can improve how you endure to the end. Whether that be working on patience, keeping an eternal perspective, or looking ahead to future blessings.

I know that following the gospel of Jesus Christ brings happiness.

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Part 5: The Gift of the Holy Ghost

Welcome back! I bet you thought you were done with this blog series after learning about baptism! Absolutely not! In fact, baptism is only half complete after you come up out of the water.

Watch this cute video and listen to a prophet of God speak about the gift we receive after baptism and how it blessed and continues to bless his life.

"Wherefore, my beloved brethren, I know that if ye shall follow the Son, with full purpose of heart, acting no hypocrisy and no deception before God, but with real intent, repenting of your sins, witnessing unto the Father that ye are willing to take upon you the name of Christ, by baptism-- yea, by following your Lord and your Savior down into the water, according to his word, behold, then shall ye receive the Holy Ghost; yea, then cometh the baptism of fire and of the Holy Ghost; and then can ye speak with the tongue of angels, and shout praises unto the Holy One of Israel."

After a person is baptized, one or more authorized priesthood holders place their hands on the person's head and confirm them a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and give them the gift of the Holy Ghost.

Anyone and everyone can feel the influence of the Holy Ghost, whether baptized or not, but it is only after baptism that one can receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. When we receive that gift we have the right to the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost.

Through the power of the Holy Ghost, Katie came to know that the Book of Mormon is true and decided to be baptized! Doesn't she just glow with the Holy Ghost?!

The Holy Ghost is the third member of the Godhead and he plays many roles. Especially when we have the gift of the Holy Ghost he can comfort us, guide us, warn us of danger, testify of truth, teach us, remind us of things we may have forgotten. You can see why it's such an advantage to have him around!

After we are baptized, one of the roles of the Holy Ghost is to sanctify us from sin. I guess you could say the baptism by water is like rinsing the dishes off with water, and the Holy Ghost is like scrubbing them with dish soap! Christ really wants this blessing for us! He said "come unto me and be baptized in my name, that ye may be sanctified by the reception of the Holy Ghost, that ye may stand spotless before me at the last day." 3 Nephi 27:20

As missionaries we always need to have the Holy Ghost with us. We can't expect people to just believe everything we say just because we say it! As Nephi taught in the Book of Mormon; "when a man (or woman!) speaketh by the power of the Holy Ghost the power of the Holy Ghost carrieth it unto the hearts of the children of men." 2 Nephi 33:1

I can promise you that through the Holy Ghost you can come to know truths. You can come to know if the Book of Mormon is true, if Joseph Smith was a prophet, and if Christ is your Savior.

"And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.

And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things."

I invite everyone who reads this to take a question that you have to your Heavenly Father. Ask in sincerity, with faith that you will be answered, and I can promise that through the Holy Ghost you will receive that answer.