Elder Brook P. Hales: ‘Answers to Prayers’

General Authority Seventy

Notable quotes:

“An important and comforting doctrine of the gospel of Jesus Christ is that our Heavenly Father has perfect love for His children.”
“The Father is aware of us, knows our needs and will help us perfectly. Sometimes that help is given in the very moment or at least soon after we ask for divine help. Sometimes our most worthy and earnest desires are not answered in the way we hope, but we find that God has greater blessings in store. And sometimes, our righteous desires are not granted in this life.”
“We have the assurance that in His own way and in His own time, Heavenly Father will bless us and resolve all of our concerns, injustices and disappointments.”

Summary points:

  1. Heavenly Father has perfect love for His children. “Because of that perfect love, He blesses us not only according to our desires and needs but also according to His infinite wisdom.”
  2. The Father is aware of His children and their needs and will help them. However, Father in Heaven may answer earnest petitions in different ways.
  3. Sometimes the Father’s help is given “quickly with the outcome we hope for.” Other times, “prayers are not answered in the way we hope for, yet with time we learn that God had greater blessings prepared for us than we initially anticipated. And sometimes our righteous petitions to God will not be granted in this life.”

Talk summary:

Heavenly Father has perfect love for His children. “Because of that perfect love, He blesses us not only according to our desires and needs but also according to His infinite wisdom.”

The Father is aware of His children and their needs and will help them. However, Father in Heaven may answer earnest petitions in different ways.

For example, sometimes divine help is granted in the moment it is asked for. The Savior taught: “Are not two sparrows sold for a farthing? and one of them shall not fall on the ground without your Father. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear ye not therefore, ye are of more value than many sparrows” (Matthew 10:29-31).

In other situations, worthy desires are not granted in the way hoped, “for our ultimate benefit.”

For example, Joseph the son of Jacob was envied and hated by his brothers who sold him as a slave into Egypt. “If ever a person might have felt that his prayers were not answered in the way he had hoped, it could have been Joseph.” In reality, his apparent misfortune resulted in great blessings to him and saved his family from starvation as he became a trusted leader in Egypt.

“God knew the end from the beginning (as He always does) and in this case, the answer to many righteous prayers was no, in favor of a far superior outcome.”

And sometimes “the answer to prayer that we so righteously, desperately and earnestly seek is not given in this life.”

God’s children have the assurance that He will resolve their concerns, injustices and disappointments in His own way and in His own time. “I know that God hears our prayers. I know that as an all-knowing, loving Father, He answers our prayers perfectly, according to His infinite wisdom, and in ways that will be to our ultimate benefit and blessing.”

About the speaker:

  • Elder Brook P. Hales was called as a General Authority Seventy on May 17, 2018, and sustained on Oct. 6, 2018, and is secretary to the First Presidency.
  • Brook Phillip Hales was born in Ogden, Utah, on April 7, 1956.
  • He married Denise Imlay in 1981, and they are the parents of four children.
  • Elder Hales served as a full-time missionary in the France Paris Mission.
  • He received a banking and finance degree from Weber State College in 1980. After graduating, he worked in commercial bank operations and in the Church’s Finance and Records Division.