Saturday, November 30, 2013

I don't think I receive revelation. Did God stop talking to me?

The Short Answer: Nope.

The Long Answer: Jesus Christ repeatedly tells us in the scriptures, "Ask and it shall be given you; seek and ye shall find; knock and it shall be opened unto you." It's one of the only scriptures that is found in all of the standard works: the Bible, the Book of Mormon, and the Doctrine and Covenants. The scripture that inspired Joseph Smith to ask Heavenly Father was James 1:5, "If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him." Clearly Heavenly Father wants to give us all knowledge. The trick is to know how to listen.

A tool of communication.
Please don't text in church.
In a communication cycle, there is a sender, a message, and a recipient who sends feedback on the message received. The burden of understanding, or the one whose job it is to be understood, is on the sender. In this case, Heavenly Father sends us perfectly clear messages through the Holy Ghost. Our job, as receivers, is to be in tune and listening.

To be in tune, we have to be worthy of the Holy Ghost, for the Lord cannot dwell in unholy temples. To do that, we have to make sure we've repented of all our sins -- daily, preferably -- and are living righteously. We don't have to be perfect; we need to be worthy. A sign of our full repentance is that we can feel the Spirit again. We must also fill our lives with uplifting things, like scripture study, daily prayer, attending church, and keeping the commandments.

Then we listen. The voice of God is still and small, but sharp enough to pierce our souls. If we aren't listening carefully, we won't hear what the Spirit is telling us. Sometimes we need to be in a quiet room, at church, in the closet, or at the temple; someplace free from distractions and noise. Fasting can give you increased spiritual sensitivity.

When we hear our answer or receive an impression, we give God feedback. To do that, we write it down and act on it. This is exactly what the scriptures are. Revelation that isn't written down is easily forgotten. If we don't remember the revelation we're given, how can we do what Heavenly Father asked us to? And how can we expect to get more? Our diligence in handling revelation is how we show God our gratitude for the knowledge he's given us. When we've shown God that He can trust us with revelation, he will trust us with more.
Scriptures: A product of revelation.
Please don't text in church.
Soon we will find that we are getting more revelation than we thought possible. Doctrine and Covenants 121:33 says, "How long can rolling waters remain impure? What power shall stay the heavens? As well might man stretch forth his puny arm to stop the Missouri river in its decreed course, or to turn it up stream, as to hinder the Almighty from pouring down knowledge from heaven upon the heads of the Latter-day Saints." Are you ready for all that? It's going to be amazing.

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