Prayer, study and faith: How people are responding to President Nelson’s invitation to strengthen their testimonies
People immediately began replying to the Prophet’s question, ‘How are you taking charge of your testimony?’
The President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints issued the invitation on his social media channels, writing:
“Recently, I invited you to ‘take charge of your own testimony.’ Please share with me what steps you are taking to accomplish this. I can’t wait to be inspired by you!”
Replies included themes of scripture study, prayer, fasting, increased temple attendance, studying conference talks, serving others, sharing testimonies, keeping the Sabbath day holy, and not listening to worldly influences.
Within these responses were more specific examples, like meaningful prayer, purposeful prayer, praying more often, praying for a certain time limit, praying at a certain time each day and praying throughout the day.
On Facebook, Becky Struppeck Everton wrote: “I am trying to be more purposeful in prayer. I am trying to pray more often and to be more thankful rather than just asking for things. I also am wanting to have more conversations with my Father in Heaven as I know He wants me to tell Him my heart. I also tell Him what I have learned about my Savior and what I want to learn more about Him.”
Scott Miller tweeted: “Choosing to pray twice a day. Be in the scriptures daily. Actively attend Church meetings. Pay tithing. Attend the temple. Be intentional in living the gospel, keeping covenants, and keeping the commandments.”
Responses about study included listening to or reading a general conference talk each day, reading the scriptures first thing in the morning, studying “Come, Follow Me” at night, reading “Saints, Vol. 3” and other gospel materials, meditating or pondering on a scripture before bed, and following the footnotes of scriptures and talks.
Some people explained they are going to the temple more often — with others or by themselves. Others have become temple workers. Teenagers and young adults wrote about the blessings they see from attending seminary and institute classes.
Hailey Burt wrote: “Since I got home from my mission a month ago, I set aside time to do personal study every morning, even if it’s only 15 minutes. I also became a temple worker and so I go to the temple every week!”
Kelly Ortman wrote that she makes a goal “to talk to the Lord every morning before talking to anyone else. I read my scriptures and ‘Come, Follow Me’ before any social media. I have found my testimony growing from putting the Lord first.”
Listening was a theme for some responses. Rachel Russell Teran wrote on Instagram that she has noticed that “when I go to the right source, my testimony soars. When I rely on the voices of the world, all I feel is confusion and frustration. So I always read everything through truthful, gospel lenses and it has changed everything. My discernment is better, my faith is stronger, and my testimony remains solid.”
Along those same lines, many people replied that they have seen their efforts work. They noticed their testimonies getting stronger as they follow the Prophet, recognize the Lord’s hand in their lives and act on promptings.
Ryan Anderson replied on Twitter: “I choose to believe. I choose to let God prevail. I choose to hearken to His voice. I choose to love, serve and minister.”
Many said that as they shared their testimony with others, they felt it strengthen.
President Nelson pointed to four ways to build a testimony in a worldwide devotional from the Conference Center on Sunday, May 15.
“Engage in daily, earnest, humble prayer. Nourish yourself in the words of ancient and modern prophets. Ask the Lord to teach you how to hear Him better. Spend more time in the temple and in family history work.”
President Nelson offered this promise: “As you make your testimony your highest priority, watch for miracles to happen in your life.”