The Enos Experiment


(Based on a true story)
I will tell you of the wrestle which I had before God, before I received a remission of my sins (Enos 1:2).

“Class, please open your Book of Mormon to Enos 1:4. Let’s read what happens next.” Sister Domico had just explained to our Primary class that Enos had set out one day to hunt in the forest. While he walked, he began to think about the teachings of his father, Jacob. Jacob’s words about eternal life touched Enos’s heart deeply.

After we turned to the book of Enos, Sister Domico asked Peter to read verse four. “And my soul hungered; and I kneeled down before my Maker, and I cried unto him in mighty prayer and supplication for mine own soul; and all the day long did I cry unto him; yea, and when the night came I did still raise my voice high that it reached the heavens.”

I had heard the story of Enos before, but this Sabbath day it “sunk deep into my heart,”* perhaps in the same way Jacob’s words had sunk into Enos’s heart. What would it be like to pray all day and into the night?

Prayer had been part of my life for as long as I could remember. My parents had taught me to pray when I was very small, and I prayed every morning and every night. But my prayers only lasted two or three minutes, and I often found myself repeating the same words. What would happen if I followed Enos’s example and poured out my soul** to Heavenly Father?

I shared a room with my sister Karen, and that Sunday evening I really wanted to be alone. So I waited until everyone was upstairs getting ready for bed and then quietly crept back down to the living room. I knelt by the side of our blue sofa, bowed my head, and quietly began talking with Heavenly Father.

I tried to imagine Him there in the room with me as I shared my thoughts and feelings. I thanked Him for the gospel and for His Son, Jesus Christ. I expressed my gratitude for a loving family and a comfortable, safe home. I asked Father in Heaven to help me be kinder to my brothers and sisters. I asked for forgiveness for my mistakes. I asked Him to help me choose the right every day. I stayed on my knees until I had shared everything that was in my heart.

I don’t know how much time passed. But as I said “amen” I felt a calm warmth fill my soul and I knew that Heavenly Father had listened to me. He was telling me through the Holy Ghost that He loved me dearly. I stayed on my knees, enjoying the warm feeling of the Spirit, and thanked Heavenly Father for the story of Enos.

[Enos-like Faith]

Elder Robert D. Hales

“We cannot find Enos-like faith without our own wrestle before God in prayer. I testify that the reward is worth the effort.” Elder Robert D. Hales of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “Finding Faith in the Lord Jesus Christ,” Ensign, Nov. 2004, 72.

[illustration] Illustrated by Brandon Dorman

** See Enos 1:9.