Monday, April 20, 2015

Mormon Monday: My Testimony of Thomas S. Monson

During my scripture study this morning, I was thinking about the truths that I know, and I felt impressed to share the story of how I came to know that President Thomas S. Monson is the Lord's prophet today.

In January of 2008, President Gordon B. Hinckley passed away. He had been the prophet for much of my youth, and he was a great hero to me. Even now, when I listen to talks that he gave, he makes me smile. I had never doubted that he was a prophet, and so his death came as a bit of a shock to me. It was difficult for me to accept President Monson as a prophet right away.

Logically, my mind told me that if I believed President Hinckley was a prophet, I should believe that President Monson was a prophet as well, but I didn't know for sure.

So, I decided to pray and ask my Heavenly Father. If there were indeed prophets on the earth today, only He could tell me for sure.

My answer didn't come right away. In fact, it seemed to take forever. At times, I became a bit discouraged. I wanted to know immediately, and it seemed that no matter how much I prayed or read my scriptures, I was in the dark.

However, I knew that the Lord would tell me one way or the other, so I kept praying.

Finally, in February 2008 (a mere month later, but it seemed like so much longer), I had the opportunity to attend a temple dedication for the Rexburg temple. It was President Monson's first dedication after he became the prophet, and I went to the dedication with this prayer in my heart.

I wanted to know the truth. I had read and fasted and prayed, and I was prepared.

My answer didn't come as I had expected. I thought that while President Monson was giving a talk, it would hit me, and I would know that he was a prophet.

It didn't happen that way. Instead, as I watched President Monson interact with children to place the last bit of cement in the temple before the dedication, my answer came. As I watched the love which he had for the children that he spoke to, I was hit with the overwhelming sense that this man was a prophet. The feeling was intense and undeniable. I KNEW that President Monson was the Lord's prophet on earth today.

Since then, I have frequently felt the spirit as this man has spoken and taught me, and I have come to love him as much as I loved President Hinckley.

One of the great things about our church, is that we can always ask questions and receive answers. There is no cap on personal revelation. If there is something that a prophet, apostle, bishop, or stake president has said that is bothering me, or that I have questions about, I am not expected to blindly follow.

Instead, we are encouraged to ask questions of the only source of all truth.

I have asked my Heavenly Father many questions. Some answers didn't come right away, and some answers told me that I didn't need to know that right now, but I know the Lord is listening and will always give me an answer, even if it's not an answer I want.

I testify that President Monson is a prophet. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is Christ's church restored in all its truth to the earth today. I know these things because I have prayed and asked my Heavenly Father, and He has told me they were true.

I know it is possible for everyone to know these things for themselves. Moroni 10:4-5 says:
 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.
 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.
I know that when we ask with a sincere heart and real intent, that we will receive the answers that we are searching for.

I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

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