- Since the Creation of this earth, our loving Father in Heaven has provided direction, leadership, and instruction to His children through prophets. His words have been passed down through these prophets and are saved as scripture for our development and learning.
- In addition, during past dispensations and in this last dispensation of the fulness of times, worthy members of the Lord’s Church have been blessed with the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost, who aids in our spiritual development and learning.
He shares that we tend to spend time trying to understand the mysteries instead of focusing on the plain and precious truths that are right in front of us.
- Sadly, our development and learning can at times be slowed or even halted by an ill-conceived desire to “pry at the plates.” These actions can lead us to seek after things that are not necessarily meant to be understood at this time, all the while ignoring the beautiful truths that are meant for us and our circumstances.
He encourages us to seek knowledge and gives a great example from the scriptures of Nephi, who sought knowledge in the following pattern:
- Nephi’s example of seeking knowledge included (1) a sincere desire, (2) humility, (3) prayer, (4) trust in the prophet, and an exercise of (5) faith, (6) diligence, and (7) obedience. This method of seeking is in great contrast to my “prying at the plates,” or trying to force an understanding of things meant to be revealed according to the Lord’s timetable and through the power of the Holy Ghost
- In contrast is President Dieter F. Uchtdorf’s counsel. He spoke of missionaries, but his words are equally applicable to all seekers of spiritual truth. “When …missionaries have faith in Jesus Christ,” he said, “they will trust the Lord enough to follow His commandments—even when they do not completely understand the reasons for them. Their faith will be manifest through diligence and through work.”
Through all our desires to learn the things of God, we must have faith. He must remember that God loves us and wants to guide our lives back to Him.
- Faith and trust in the Lord require us to acknowledge that His wisdom is superior to our own. We must also acknowledge that His plan provides the greatest potential for spiritual development and learning.
- As we acknowledge that we are the workmanship of a wise and devoted Father in Heaven, “O then,” why not allow Him to guide our spiritual development and learning “according to his will and pleasure” rather than our own?
It is human nature to want to learn more and more. When the answers are not immediately known, we tend to think there are no answers or we discount the source of that knowledge as inaccurate because it didn't tell us what we thought it should. I think we sometimes do this in our spiritual lives. If the answer to the questions is not immediately made clear to us, we tend to ask ourselves if we are unworthy of receiving answers from Heaven. We tend to think the problem is us instead of realizing that the Lord provides answers on His timeline instead of when we think we should get the answers. I have learned that given enough time to study, pray, and ponder the scriptures, the things I want to know are made clear and the things that are not clear cause me to have faith that God is in charge of all things. I may not have all the answers to life's questions, but I know that God does and someday, He will make clear to me what I need to know to be able to return to live with Him someday. I am grateful for a loving Father who knows what I need personally and after exercising my faith in Him and His plan, gives me what I need to stay on the right path.