- The Everlasting and Almighty God, the Creator of this vast universe, will speak to those who approach Him with a sincere heart and real intent. He will speak to them in dreams, visions, thoughts, and feelings. He will speak in a way that is unmistakable and that transcends human experience. He will give them divine direction and answers for their personal lives.
God's desire is to share light and knowledge with each of His children. He wants us to come to Him and he wants us to share His light and truth with us.
- God cares about you. He will listen, and He will answer your personal questions. The answers to your prayers will come in His own way and in His own time, and therefore, you need to learn to listen to His voice. God wants you to find your way back to Him, and the Savior is the way. God wants you to learn of His Son, Jesus Christ, and experience the profound peace and joy that come from following the path of divine discipleship.
President Uchtdorf outlines 4 steps that we can do to gain a testimony for ourselves and to have the Holy Ghost confirm the truthfulness of the gospel to us personally.
- First, you must search the word of God. That means reading the scriptures and studying the words of the ancient as well as modern prophets regarding the restored gospel of Jesus Christ—not with an intent to doubt or criticize but with a sincere desire to discover truth. Ponder upon the things you will feel, and prepare your minds to receive the truth. “Even if ye can no more than desire to believe, let this desire work in you … that ye can give place for [the word of God].”
- Second, you must consider, ponder, fearlessly strive to believe, and be grateful for how merciful the Lord has been to His children from the time of Adam to our day by providing prophets, seers, and revelators to lead His Church and help us find the way back to Him.
- Third, you must ask your Heavenly Father, in the name of His Son, Jesus Christ, to manifest the truth of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints unto you. Ask with a sincere heart and with real intent, having faith in Christ.
- There is also a fourth step, given to us by the Savior: “If any man will do [God’s] will, he shall know of the doctrine, whether it be of God, or whether I speak of myself.” In other words, when you are trying to verify the truth of gospel principles, you must first live them. Put gospel doctrine and Church teachings to the test in your own life. Do it with real intent and enduring faith in God. If you will do these things, you have a promise from God—who is bound by His word —that He will manifest the truth to you by the power of the Holy Ghost. He will grant you greater light that will allow you to look through the darkness and witness unimaginably glorious vistas incomprehensible to mortal sight.
Our testimonies are not just for us while we are here on earth. The truth that we gain while here on earth will go with us throughout eternity.
- This personal testimony of the gospel and the Church is the most important thing you can earn in this life. It will not only bless and guide you during this life, but it will also have a direct bearing on your life throughout eternity.
When we gain light, it encourages us to continue to live a righteous life so we can gain more light. The opposite is also true, when we don't receive light, it encourages us to not seek more light in our lives.
- The more we incline our hearts and minds toward God, the more heavenly light distills upon our souls. And each time we willingly and earnestly seek that light, we indicate to God our readiness to receive more light. Gradually, things that before seemed hazy, dark, and remote become clear, bright, and familiar to us. By the same token, if we remove ourselves from the light of the gospel, our own light begins to dim—not in a day or a week but gradually over time—until we look back and can’t quite understand why we had ever believed the gospel was true. Our previous knowledge might even seem foolish to us because what once was so clear has again become blurred, hazy, and distant.
Our testimonies come in different sizes throughout our lives. The church is for all people, no matter where their testimonies are at. The church invites people with small and growing testimonies and strong and sturdy testimonies to worship together. There is value to all of us when we share our testimonies with others.
- The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is a place for people with all kinds of testimonies. There are some members of the Church whose testimony is sure and burns brightly within them. Others are still striving to know for themselves. The Church is a home for all to come together, regardless of the depth or the height of our testimony. I know of no sign on the doors of our meetinghouses that says, “Your testimony must be this tall to enter.”
President Uchtdorf reminds us that we welcome everyone along the path of discipleship. No matter where we are at in our spiritual journey, we invite all to come unto Christ.
- In the end, we are all pilgrims seeking God’s light as we journey on the path of discipleship. We do not condemn others for the amount of light they may or may not have; rather, we nourish and encourage all light until it grows clear, bright, and true.
We should start where we are at to seek more light and truth. Our testimonies of this great work will be strengthened as we ask God for more knowledge live the gospel how we know to be right.
- It is my testimony that this spiritual light is within the reach of every child of God. It will enlighten your mind and bring healing to your heart and joy to your days. My dear friends, please do not delay the moment to seek and strengthen your own personal testimony of God’s divine work, even the work of light and truth.
I love that President Uchtdorf points out that the church is for people at all levels of testimony. The church is for those new to the gospel and it is for those that are veterans of the gospel message. We have a great desire to receive additional light when we receive light. As we gain a testimony of the gospel, it burns within us a stronger desire to gain a deeper understanding of those things that we don't know. The Holy Ghost encourages us to continue to ask God for more truth and light as we receive truth and light. God has promised that is we ask, He will share with us the truthfulness of the gospel message. He will shine a light on our souls that will encourage our discipleship and bless us along the journey.