I bear testimony of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Ghost. All those things we read about them in the scripture are true. I’ve received a witness of this fact. I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer, our Advocate with the Father.
I can bear testimony of Jesus Christ based on my own personal experiences, from my own book of scripture as it were. It gives me great joy to ponder and reflect upon the blessings the Lord has, in his condescension’s, brought to pass in my life.
As a boy, I’d learned at church that if you were born in the covenant you were the elect of God. I wasn’t born into the covenant, my mother was inactive and my father wasn’t a member of the church, so I concluded I wasn’t elect.
I loved my mother and father with and overflowing love and it tore me up inside to experience the pain that came to my family when my parents divorced, so based on what I’d learned at church I assumed in the honesty of my heart I must have messed up real bad in the pre-existents or else my prayers for my family would have been answered differently—I stopped attending church. I was in the 8th grade.
Years later, as a 19 year soldier preparing for deployment in Viet Nam, I felt a stirring in my soul, I decided to read the Book of Mormon and test the promise made by the prophet Moroni. After making this decision, before I even opened the Book of Mormon, the Lord left the 99 and my journey back to activity in the Lord’s church began.
The Lord gave me an unusual spiritual experience which taught me powerfully that there are two powers in the universe—the power of God and the power of satan. This experience changed my life.
The Savior taught:
What man of you, having an hundred sheep, if he lose one of them, doth not leave the ninety and nine in the wilderness, and go after that which is lost, until he find it? And when he hath found it, he layeth it on his shoulders, rejoicing… Luke 15:4-5
This scripture was literately fulfilled. I learned what it is like to be carried on the Saviors shoulders. I came to know something of his unconditional love. The Lord nurtured me and led me by my hand, giving me answers to my prayers. When I read the Book of Mormon for the first time, it was a daily spiritual feast. It was an awesome experience.
In those days of spiritual refreshing, He raised up friends, helped me overcome challenges, provided opportunities, and showed me great compassion and kindness. He is a true Friend!
I love the Lord because he loved me first. I am awed by undeserved blessings that have come to me. When I’ve sought him diligently, with lowliness of heart, I’ve been given dreams and visions that comforted my soul and taught me wondrous things. I know now that I’m not a second class member of his church.
On a few special occasions, unseen ministering spirits came in answer to my prayers. When experiencing a severe trial, when I thought my heart would break, the comforter spent the night with me and my pain was turned to joy. I do not have words to describe these experiences. When I cried out for mercy, seeking a forgiveness of my sins, he forgave me and sent fire and the Holy Ghost, as I partook of the sacrament.
I had supposed, because of what I learned at church, that these kinds of experiences were reserved for those the Lord calls to important positions in the church. I know now, that is a false tradition had among us. I’ve learned the Lord is no respecter of persons and that he gives his gifts for the benefit of those who love him and keep all his commandments, and him that seeketh so to do…D&C 46:9.
I’ve learned that mighty prayer is the primary means to obtaining things of the Spirit. Having said that, I don’t want to create the impression I have an open channel to the Lord. There have been many times I have sought guidance on very important issues, and it was has though the heaven were sealed. I have just accepted these experiences and moved on and done the best I could.
Most often I have received answers to prayers by the whisperings of the spirit that comes into the heart and mind. I must emphasize that these things have come to me because of the Lord’s condescension’s and not because of any special worthiness in me.
The Lord has given me these experiences and I bear testimony of the Lord’s grace because I want to be an instrument in his hands to increase faith, refresh testimonies, and increase hope in the promises we have as covenant followers of Christ.
I stand all amazed at the love Jesus offers us!
Listen to the words of our Savior Jesus Christ:
HEARKEN, O ye people of my church, to whom the kingdom has been given; hearken ye and give ear to him who laid the foundation of the earth, who made the heavens and all the hosts thereof, and by whom all things were made which live, and move, and have a being.
And again I say, hearken unto my voice, lest death shall overtake you; in an hour when ye think not the summer shall be past, and the harvest ended, and your souls not saved.
Listen to him who is the advocate with the Father, who is pleading your cause before him-
Saying: Father, behold the sufferings and death of him who did no sin, in whom thou wast well pleased; behold the blood of thy Son which was shed, the blood of him whom thou gavest that thyself might be glorified;
Wherefore, Father, spare these my brethren that believe on my name, that they may come unto me and have everlasting life. D&C 45:1-5.
It is my fervent desire to come unto Christ and be perfected in him and receive eternal life. I hope the same for you.