~by Erin

As the secretary in the Primary {ages 3-11}, I attend Primary every Sunday. One Sunday the woman giving the lesson talked about how she started setting aside Sunday evenings to give a “thankful only” prayer. She said she watches for things throughout the day and makes a mental note of things to pray and give thanks for that night. She said it has really helped her be more thankful. I love this idea, and I decided to do it! I like the idea of not always asking for things from Heavenly Father, but to show him that we are thankful and don’t always expect something in return.

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The most meaningful and spiritual prayers I have experienced contained many expressions of thanks and few, if any, requests. As I am blessed now to pray with apostles and prophets, I find among these modern-day leaders of the Savior’s Church the same characteristic that describes Captain Moroni in the Book of Mormon: these are men whose hearts swell with thanksgiving to God for the many privileges and blessings which He bestows upon His people (see Alma 48:12). Also, they do not multiply many words, for it is given unto them what they should pray, and they are filled with desire (see 3 Nephi 19:24). The prayers of prophets are childlike in their simplicity and powerful because of their sincerity.

As we strive to make our prayers more meaningful, we should remember that “in nothing doth man offend God, or against none is his wrath kindled, save those who confess not his hand in all things, and obey not his commandments” (D&C 59:21). Let me recommend that periodically you and I offer a prayer in which we only give thanks and express gratitude. Ask for nothing; simply let our souls rejoice and strive to communicate appreciation with all the energy of our hearts.

Elder David A. Bednar