10 August 2011

Listen to the Spirit

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Yea, behold, I will tell you in your mind and in your heart, by the Holy Ghost, which shall come upon you and which shall dwell in your heart.
Now, behold, this is the spirit of revelation
D&C 8:2–3


As members of the Church, we've been given the blessing of the Holy Ghost. And we want to receive our own personal instruction. But how do we do that?
In his talk Teaching and Learning by the Spirit, Ensign, March 1997, Elder Dallin H. Oaks is giving us a few pointers on how to recognize promptings:
"The teachings of the Spirit often come as feelings. That fact is of the utmost importance, yet some misunderstand what it means. I have met persons who told me they have never had a witness from the Holy Ghost because they have never felt their bosom 'burn within' them.
"What does a 'burning in the bosom' mean? Does it need to be a feeling of caloric heat, like the burning produced by combustion? If that is the meaning, I have never had a burning in the bosom. Surely, the word 'burning' in this scripture signifies a feeling of comfort and serenity. That is the witness many receive. That is the way revelation works.
"Truly, the still, small voice is just that, 'still' and 'small.'
Elder Oaks also goes on to quote:
“The language of peace, as spoken by the Lord, embraces a sense of quiet confidence, comfort, and warmth. It is gentle and calm, amiable and sweet; it is temperate and kind; it is orderly and identified by happiness, joy, and feelings of love” (Joseph Fielding McConkie and Robert L. Millet, The Holy Ghost [1989], 14)."

I recently went to the temple with my husband and son. Our boy is going on a mission soon, and he was receiving his endowments. The extended family was there, and when we made it to the celestial room, I was full of joy. It was a beautiful feeling, to think that we'll have that joy (and more) after we cross the veil. I said that to our company, and one of them got closer to me and said that she wished she could feel anything. Are we like that some times? We don't listen to the promptings, and then we say that the Lord doesn't answer our prayers.
I believe that He does answer, we just have to keep working on our reception.
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