- In our world today it is a rare and precious thing to have a testimony that God our Heavenly Father lives; that His Son, Jesus Christ, is our Savior and Redeemer; and that priesthood authority to administer the gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored once again upon the earth. The profound blessing of having a testimony of these truths cannot be measured or ever taken for granted.
- Personal testimony is the foundation of our faith. It is the binding power that makes The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints unique in the lives of its members, as compared with all other religious denominations of the world. The doctrine of the Restoration is glorious in and of itself, but the thing that makes it powerful and imbues it with great meaning is the personal testimonies of Church members worldwide who accept the Restoration of the gospel and strive to live its teachings every day of their lives.
- A testimony is a witness or confirmation of eternal truth impressed upon individual hearts and souls through the Holy Ghost,
He says that when the Spirit confirms to our spirit the truth of the gospel, it begins to immediately effect the way we live our lives.
- When one receives a testimony of truth through this divinely appointed process, it immediately begins to have impact on that person’s life.
- Testimony—real testimony, born of the Spirit and confirmed by the Holy Ghost—changes lives. It changes how you think and what you do. It changes what you say. It affects every priority you set and every choice you make. To have a real and abiding testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ is to be “spiritually … born of God,” to “[receive] his image in your countenances,” and to experience a “mighty change in your hearts.”
Elder Ballard says that our journey to learn gospel truth is worth all the effort that it requires to obtain that testimony personally.
- To gain and forever hold on to a testimony of gospel truths is worth whatever price in spiritual preparation we may be required to pay.
He says that one of the basic ways we can feel the confirming power of the Spirit in our lives is through sharing our testimony of Christ.
- The Spirit cannot be restrained when pure testimony of Christ is borne.
He provides a clear definition of what it means to bear testimony.
- To bear testimony is “to bear witness by the power of the Holy Ghost; to make a solemn declaration of truth based on personal knowledge or belief.”
Elder Ballard closes with advice to not doubt or fear when we share our testimonies. We need to overcome these issues and boldly stand as believers of the truth.
- Trust in the Lord, and never underestimate the impact your testimony can have upon the lives of others as you bear it with the power of the Spirit. Doubt and fear are tools of Satan. The time has come for all of us to overcome any fear and boldly take every opportunity to share our testimonies of the gospel.
Sometimes in testimony meeting I think we lose sight of the real reason we are at church. We are there to partake of the sacrament, and strengthen each other and encourage each other to stay on the right path. Sometimes our testimony meetings fall short of inspiring others to follow the Savior. I need to be more willing to help guide our meetings to the real reason we worship and help those I attend church with learn that the reason we have testimony meeting is to share uplifting and spiritual experiences that strengthen our faith. Elder Ballard shares that we should focus on God, Christ, Joseph Smith, and the Book of Mormon. If we do, the Spirit will touch our hearts and strengthen our desire and ability to do better.