"The scriptures are filled with admonitions to stay close to the Lord and call upon His holy name in prayer," Elder L. Tom Perry of the Quorum of the Twelve said in his April 1993 general conference address. "After Alma's remarkable conversion, he spent his life proclaiming the gospel and perfecting the Saints. Before he died, he wanted to instill in his sons a desire to be obedient to God's will. To Helaman he said:
O, remember, my son, and learn wisdom in thy youth; yea, learn in thy youth to keep the commandments of God."Yea, and cry unto God for all thy support; yea, let all thy doings be unto the Lord, and whithersoever thou goest let it be in the Lord; yea, let all thy thoughts be directed unto the Lord; yea, let the affections of thy heart be placed upon the Lord forever.
" `Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings, and he will direct thee for good; yea, when thou liest down at night lie down unto the Lord, that he may watch over you in your sleep; and when thou risest in the morning let thy heart be full of thanks unto God; and if ye do these things, ye shall be lifted up at the last day.' " (Alma 37:35-37.)
Elder Perry said that prayer is the primary means of communication between God and man. He quoted the Prophet Joseph Smith: " `We would say to the brethren, seek
till youT know God in your closets, call upon Him in the fields. Follow the directions of the Book of Mormon, and pray over, and for your families, your cattle, your flocks, your herds, your corn, and all things that you possess; ask the blessing of God upon . . . your labors, and everything . . . you engage in.' " (History of the Church 5:31.)
Elder Perry added: "When we pray to the Lord, we should remember who we are addressing and be prepared to give Him our undivided attention as we humbly supplicate before Him. President John Taylor counseled us this way:
" `Do you have prayers in your family? . . . And when you do, do you go through the operation like the
grindingT of a piece of machinery, or do you bow in meekness and with . . . sincere desire to seek the blessing of God upon you and your household? That is the way . . . we ought to do, and cultivate a spirit of devotion and trust in God, dedicating ourselves to Him, and seeking His blessings.' " (Journal of Discourses 21:118.)