- He had paid attention to my voice but that I had not paid any attention to His. There was a deep pain in my heart for disobeying His voice and at the same time a deep sense of gratitude for His mercy. He did not exercise His justice upon me, but in His great mercy, He had saved my life.
He talks about the way this event changed his life but more importantly, how it has changed his relationship with the Savior through prayer.
- I pondered my life to that point. I found that on many occasions, our Father in Heaven had been so merciful to me. He taught me many lessons that day in Machu Picchu and in Cusco, Peru. One of the greatest lessons was that I should always, always pray “with a sincere heart, with real intent, [exercising] faith in Christ.”
He uses specific examples from the Lord's prayer that detail how we can have more meaning in our prayers. He asks a series of questions that help us example our prayers and the effectiveness of them.
- When you pray, do you really, truly want that “not my will, but thine, be done”?
- When you pray, are you really praying or just saying prayers? Are you superficial with your prayers?
- When you pray, do you feel like heaven is opened? When was the last time you felt that connection with heaven?
- Do you prepare yourself to make important decisions by praying to your Heavenly Father? Do you prepare yourself for a moment of prayer?
- Jesus invites us to “pray always”. Jesus knows that our Heavenly Father hears and gives what is best for us. Why is it that sometimes we don’t want to receive? Why?
He reminds us that God is always there to listen. All we have to do is turn to Him.
- At the very moment we say, “Father in Heaven,” He hears our prayers and is sensitive to us and our needs. And so His eyes and His ears are now connected to you. He reads our minds, and He feels our hearts. You cannot hide anything from Him. Now, the wonderful thing is that He will see you with eyes of love and mercy—love and mercy that we cannot fully understand. But love and mercy are with Him the very moment you say, “Father in Heaven.”
He reminds us that God is not like us. He does not treat us like we sometimes treat each other. We would be wise to recognize that He blesses us with a love that is greater than our understanding.
- So a moment of prayer is a very, very sacred moment. He is not one to say, “No, I will not listen to you now because you only come to me when you are in trouble.” Only men do that. He is not one to say, “Oh, you cannot imagine how busy I am now.” Only men say that.
I have contemplated the questions in this talk and examined my experiences with prayer. There are many things I can do to add more meaning. I was specifically touched with the idea "When you pray, are you really praying or just saying prayers?" Sometimes I go through the motions and don't have much meaning, sometimes I have a lot of meaning and need answers. Sometimes, I get impressions and don't act on them. Sometimes I am given answers and I don't like them. But I have learned that these are all problems on my side of the communication. God is steady. He is always there, ready to listen, ready to help me, and ready to give me guidance. The barriers are mine and I am working to get over them. This talk gives me hope that I am one the right path to bring more meaning, understanding, and learning into my prayers. It's ironic that to improve my communication with Heavenly Father, I simply just need to communicate more with God. It is my hope that we all look to the example of the Savior and add more meaning to our communication with our Heavenly Father.