Saturday, 21 January 2017

Previous Week Continued--focused on Prayer

Why do we Pray?
Make sure you check out the article in the New Era this month!  It's fabulous, and talks about the 5 Promises of Prayer. 
1. Strength to Overcome
2. Knowledge and Guidance
3. Forgiveness
4. Desire to Do the Lord's Will
5. Peace

To better understand prayer, I have listened to the counsel of others, pondered the scriptures, and studied the lives of prophets and others. Yet what seems most helpful is seeing in my mind a child approaching trustingly a loving, kind, wise, understanding Father, who wants us to succeed.

How do you get answers to your prayers?
I have discovered that what sometimes seems an impenetrable barrier to communication is a giant step to be taken in trust. Seldom will you receive a complete response all at once. It will come a piece at a time, in packets, so that you will grow in capacity. As each piece is followed in faith, you will be led to other portions until you have the whole answer. That pattern requires you to exercise faith in our Father’s capacity to respond. While sometimes it’s very hard, it results in significant personal growth.

Some misunderstandings about prayer can be clarified by realizing that the scriptures define principles for effective prayer, but they do not assure when a response will be given. Actually, He will reply in one of three ways. First, you can feel the peace, comfort, and assurance that confirm that your decision is right. Or second, you can sense that unsettled feeling, the stupor of thought, indicating that your choice is wrong. Or third—and this is the difficult one—you can feel no response.
--Elder Scott, Using the Supernal Gift of Prayer

What if you don't get an answer?
Sometimes we seem to get no answer to our sincere and striving prayers. It takes faith to remember that the Lord answers in His time and in His way so as to best bless us. Or, on further reflection, we will often realize that we already know full well what we should do.
Please do not be discouraged if this does not work for you all at once. Like learning a foreign language, it takes practice and effort. Please know, though, that you can learn the language of the Spirit, and when you do, it will give you great faith and power in righteousness.
--Elder Cornish, the Privilege of Prayer

We must not imagine that any kind of prayer, no matter how sincere, will be very effective if all we do is to say the prayer. We must not only say our prayers; we must also live them. The Lord is much more pleased with the person who prays and then goes to work than with the person who only prays. Much like medicine, prayer works only when we use it as directed.
--Elder Cornish, the Privilege of Prayer

Saturday, 14 January 2017

How Can I Know My Heavenly Father?

We are daughters of our Heavenly Father, who loves us and wants us to draw near to Him.

How does Heavenly Father feel about us?
Think about the father that came to talk to you. How did he feel about his children? How do you think that compares to our Heavenly Father?

Why should we get to know Heavenly Father?
Actually, because He knows how desperately we need His guidance, He commands, “Thou shalt pray vocally as well as in thy heart; yea, before the world as well as in secret, in public as well as in private.”1
It matters not our circumstance, be we humble or arrogant, poor or rich, free or enslaved, learned or ignorant, loved or forsaken, we can address Him. We need no appointment. Our supplication can be brief or can occupy all the time needed. It can be an extended expression of love and gratitude or an urgent plea for help. He has created numberless cosmos and populated them with worlds, yet you and I can talk with Him personally, and He will ever answer.
--Elder Scott, 2007 Talk (see below)
How do we get to know Heavenly Father?
By learning about Him. We can do this through the scriptures and through the words of the Living Prophets. When we learn about Jesus Christ, it is like learning about Heavenly Father. How do you feel about that? What do you think the main difference is?

The best way to learn about Heavenly Father is to pray. Knowing "about" someone is not the same as "knowing" them. It's a good start, but not the end.

What tools has Heavenly Father given us to draw closer to him?

  1. Prayer
  2. Scriptures
  3. The Prophets and Apostles
  4. Friends and Family who know Him

John 17:3 (The importance of knowing Heavenly Father)
1 John 2:3–54:7–8Enos 1:1–7Mosiah 4:9–125:13D&C 88:63–6593:1 (How we come to know Heavenly Father)
D. Todd Christofferson, “Abide in My Love,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2016, 48–51
Richard G. Scott, “Using the Supernal Gift of Prayer,” Ensign or Liahona, May 2007, 8–11
Robert D. Hales, “Seeking to Know God, Our Heavenly Father, and His Son, Jesus Christ” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2009, 29–32

Individual Worth #1