Saturday, February 7, 2009

Feb 8, 2009 #6, "I Will Tell You in Your Mind and in Your Heart, by the Holy Ghost", Feb 8, 2009

Wow! These last two lessons topics have been great. This was a very paramount principle considering Joseph Smith's purpose and I am so grateful for his many examples that he shared with us concerning personal revelation.

The picture above is titled "Of One Heart" and was painted by Liz Lemon Swindle. I love it. It is a reminder to me that even through my darkest trials and tribulations, if I am humble and faithful, I can receive personal revelation through the Holy Ghost that will bring "peace to my mind".

I found an article in the Meridian (online LDS magazine) titled "Conduit Revelation" written by Philip A. Allred. It was a little long, but I found it very informative. I have included some of the quotes from this article if you don't have time to read the whole thing.

Elder Boyd K. Packer recently noted, "The voice of the Spirit is a still, small voice-a voice that is felt rather than heard. It is a spiritual voice that comes into the mind as a thought into your heart" (Ensign, May 2000, p. 9). What this means here is that this voice is internal, not external.

Elder Richard G. Scott helps to define this in what I consider a landmark address to the Church Educational System in August of 1998:

I would explain that an impression to the mind is very specific. Detailed words can be heard or felt and written as though the instruction were being dictated. A communication to the heart is a more general impression. The Lord often begins by giving impressions. Where there is recognition of their importance and they are obeyed, one gains more capacity to receive more detailed instruction to the mind. An impression to the heart, if followed, is fortified by a more specific instruction to the mind (Richard G. Scott, "Helping Others to Be Spiritually Led," General Authority Address, The Twenty-Second Annual Church Educational System Religious Educators Symposium, Brigham Young University, 11 August 1998, p. 4).

Thus general impressions come to the heart and specific instructions are delivered to the mind. Elder Scott�s suggestion that the Lord begins with the general impressions, to see if they will be heeded, then moves to more specific instructions has been borne out many times in my life. When I have been willing to follow those initial tuggings I have been rewarded with greater direction. However, when I have been slothful or doubtful I have squelched these precious communications and I know that I have lost something of significance from the Lord.

Elder Dallin H. Oaks offers this helpful distinction: "As a source of knowledge, the scriptures are not the ultimate but the penultimate. The ultimate knowledge comes by revelation. A study of the scriptures enables men and women to receive revelations. Because scripture reading put us in tune with the Spirit of the Lord" ("Scripture Reading and Revelation," Address to BYU Studies Academy, Provo Utah, 29 Jan. 1993, 3-4).

Elder Carlos E. Asay notes, "I fear that many of us rush about from day to day taking for granted the Holy Scriptures. We scramble to honor appointments with physicians, lawyers, and businessmen. Yet we think nothing of postponing interviews with Deity-postponing scripture study. How much better it would be if we planned and held sacred fifteen or twenty minutes a day for reading the scriptures. Such interviews with Deity would help us recognize his voice and enable us to receive guidance in all our affairs. We must look to God through the scriptures" (Ensign, November, 1978, 53-54).

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