Sunday, February 6, 2011

The Power of A Strong Testimony

In this uncertain world, there are some things that never change: the perfect love of our Heavenly Father for each of us; the assurance that He is there and will always hear us; the existence of absolute, unchanging truths; the fact that there is a plan of happiness; the assurance that success in life is attained through faith in Jesus Christ and obedience to His teachings because of the redemptive power of His Atonement; the certainty of life after death; the reality that our condition there is set by how we live here. Whether one does or does not accept these truths does not alter their reality. They are the fundamental building blocks of a living testimony. A strong testimony is the unshakable foundation of a secure, meaningful life where peace, confidence, happiness, and love can flourish. It is anchored in a conviction that an all-knowing God is in command of His work. He will not fail. He will keep His promises.

In the October 2001 General Conference, Elder Richard G. Scott of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles gave a talk entitled, "The Power of A Strong Testimony." This is one of the best talks about what a testimony is, how we can gain and strengthen our testimonies, and the blessings that we receive as we act in faith in accordance with our testimonies. Taught Elder Scott:

A strong testimony is the sustaining power of a successful life. It is centered in an understanding of the divine attributes of God our Father, Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost. It is secured by a willing reliance upon Them. A powerful testimony is grounded in the personal assurance that the Holy Ghost can guide and inspire our daily acts for good.
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For enduring peace and security, at some time in life, in quiet moments of reflection, you must come to know with a surety that there is a God in heaven who loves you, that He is in control and will help you. That conviction is the core of strong testimony.

Everything I do and how I live is based off my testimony of our Heavenly Father's plan and the Atonement of His Son Jesus Christ. I am where I am right now and enjoy the blessings I do because of my testimony. No matter what happens in my life, no matter what part of my life becomes unstable or confusing or unsure, I know that everything will come out alright. Of course even with a deep and abiding testimony that we are children of our Father in Heaven, trials still come, sometimes we lose sight of what is truly important, and we make poor decisions. None of us is perfect and life is full of trial-by-error experiences. However, what I believe greatly strengthens my efforts to be optimistic and greatly shapes the outcomes of my experiences in this life. You have to read this talk and figure out how these principles can bless your life. Pray about it using the principles taught by Elder Scott in this talk. You have everything to gain.

Jeremy