We often read or hear that faith is a decision. And so it is. Those who make the decision to be faithful also make the decision to take the Holy Spirit for their guide. I think of them as inseparable companions. We’re taught that “faith cometh not by signs, but signs follow those that believe.” One of the signs that accompany the faithful is the guidance of the Holy Spirit.
Guidance of the Holy Spirit comes because of the grace of God. Another way of saying this is: it comes as a tender mercy to, “those who love me and keep all my commandments, and him that seeketh so to do”.
One of the surprising things about receiving the guidance of the Holy Spirit is that we don’t always recognize it. We may suspect it, but at times we just can’t be sure (at other times, we know prayer resulted in guidance). I’ll provide an example of a suspected answer to prayer that resulted in guidance from the Spirit.
Years ago, I was part of a group our Stake President asked to work on a filmstrip about dating. We worked on it for months. The night of the presentation, in the old Joseph Smith Building at BYU, as people started to take their seats, we realized that the screen to project the slide show on wasn’t down. Without the screen we couldn’t project the filmstrip. The room where the controls for the screen were located was locked up. We had about 10 minutes to find a solution. I took a moment and explained to Heavenly Father our predicament and asked for his help.
I looked around and saw that there was more than one screen near the ceiling, a new one and one that looked old. On the stage, I also saw what appeared to be some kind of a control panel. It was well used and had wires hanging out of one side. I flipped a couple of switches and decided to touch some of the exposes wires together. To my delight the well used movie screen haltingly began to descend until it was fully lowered. From there, everything went well. About 300 or so people showed up.
After the presentation, one of the maintenance crew for the JSB showed up. He was both agitated and perplexed when he saw the old blue projection screen was lowered. He asked me how I got it down. I told him. He shrugged his shoulders and said he didn’t know how we got it down and we were lucky it didn’t fall down and hurt someone. As he continued to talk about his amazement that I was able to lower the screen, I realized that my prayer may have resulted in a blessing that otherwise wouldn’t have occurred.
I thanked Heavenly Father that everything worked out as it did. I suspected He had intervened in answer to prayer.
We’re taught to thank the Lord in all things and acknowledge his hand in our lives. Our group had worked for months in this effort and many prayers for its success had been offered.
President Monson taught,
“…my brothers and sisters, our Heavenly Father is aware of our needs and will help us as we call upon Him for assistance. I believe that no concern of ours is too small or insignificant. The Lord is in the details of our lives.” President Thomas S. Monson, Oct 2012 Conference
A reader left the following comment after reading this post.
“I’m just so sad I was looking for someone who actually gets answers. I don’t. Nothing.”
My purpose in writing this post is to point out that prayers are answered in many ways. As I pointed out in this post, sometimes we can only suspect a prayer was answered. Other prayers are answered in ways that leave no room for doubt. Click here for a post that relates answers to prayer that can not be denied.