There have been times in my existence when I felt confused about where I should be going. I have received spiritual promptings hinting in a certain direction. Like when I was deciding what college I should attend after high school.
“I can’t. My grades are nowhere near good enough. I can’t afford to live on my own,” I stubbornly answered back.
After a week of indecision, I once again heard that voice.
“Apply for BYU,” the voice said, a little louder this time.
“Fine!” I snapped back.
I applied for BYU. In Hawaii. I thought I had my best chances in that direction.
I received the rejection letter a couple months later.
“Hah!” I scornfully replied to that voice. “I told you I would not get accepted.”
Again, I received the inspiration to apply for BYU. In Utah.
“No way, BYU Utah is the hardest to get accepted into!”
“Do it,” the voice commanded.
I relented. But, to make my point, I applied to all three BYU schools (Idaho, Utah, and Hawaii).
A month later, I received an acceptance letter for BYU Utah. I was astounded. All the evidence supported my theory that my grades were not to the caliber of their regular freshman acceptees. However, I had applied for Winter semester, not Fall. With admission requirements slightly lower for Winter applications, my chances were elevated.
I was also accepted into Idaho, and, once again, Hawaii rejected me. (My mother did not inform me of this until I was on my way to Provo. She is sweet like that.)
The voice that guided me was the Holy Ghost, sometimes called the Holy Spirit. I can recount numerous occasions, some big (like marrying my husband), and others small (help me find my wedding ring!), where I have been guided by the Spirit.
After being baptized, I received this gift–the gift of the Holy Ghost. Elder Dallin H. Oaks has talked about this gift in his General Conference talk, “Always Have His Spirit.”
The blessings available through the gift of the Holy Ghost are conditioned upon worthiness. “The Spirit of the Lord doth not dwell in unholy temples” (Hel. 4:24; see also Mosiah 2:36–37; 1 Cor. 3:16–17). Even though we have a right to his constant companionship, the Spirit of the Lord will dwell only with us when we keep the commandments. He will withdraw when we offend him by profanity, uncleanliness, disobedience, rebellion, or other serious sins.
Worthy men and women who have the gift of the Holy Ghost can be edified and guided by inspiration and revelation. The Lord has declared that “the mysteries of his kingdom … are only to be seen and understood by the power of the Holy Spirit, which God bestows on those who love him, and purify themselves before him” (D&C 76:114, 116).
Living worthily of the Holy Ghost is something that I find very important. I need the Spirit’s guidance. I feel this even more now that I am a mother. My decisions involve more than myself now, they involve my family. It is important for me to be in tune with the Holy Ghost.
Elder Oaks described the impact of the Holy Ghost on a family in the following paragraph:
If we are practicing our faith and seeking the companionship of the Holy Spirit, His presence can be felt in our hearts and in our homes. A family having daily family prayers and seeking to keep the commandments of God and honor his name and speak lovingly to one another will have a spiritual feeling in their home that will be discernible to all who enter it. I know this, because I have felt the presence or absence of that feeling in many LDS homes.
The turbulent nature of our world necessitates the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost. Feeling the Spirit’s powerful presence in my home can help me be a better wife, mother, and teacher.
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