From Church Leaders

How to Seek and Know the Father and the Son

Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles

From the October 2009 general conference address “Seeking to Know God, Our Heavenly Father, and His Son, Jesus Christ” (Ensign, Nov. 2009, 29–32).

Elder Robert D. Hales
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The way to know the truth about God is through the Holy Ghost. His work is to “testify of [God]” (John 15:26) and to “teach [us] all things” (John 14:26).

However, we must be careful not to constrain His influence. When we do not do what is right or when our outlook is dominated by skepticism, cynicism, criticism, and irreverence toward others and their beliefs, the Spirit cannot be with us.

You may already know, deep in your soul, that God lives. You may not know all about Him yet and do not understand all His ways, but the light of belief is within you, waiting to be awakened and intensified by the Spirit of God and the Light of Christ, which you are born with.

So come. Believe the testimonies of the prophets. Learn of God and Christ. The pattern to do so is clearly taught by prophets of old and prophets today.

  • Cultivate a diligent desire to know that God lives.

  • This desire leads us to ponder on the things of heaven—to let the evidence of God all around us touch our hearts.

  • With softened hearts we are prepared to heed the Savior’s call to “search the scriptures” (John 5:39) and to humbly learn from them.

  • We are then ready to ask our Heavenly Father sincerely, in the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ, if the things we have learned are true. Most of us will not see God, as the prophets have, but the still, small promptings of the Spirit—the thoughts and feelings that the Holy Ghost brings into our minds and hearts—will give us an undeniable knowledge that He lives and that He loves us.

Gaining this knowledge is ultimately the quest of all God’s children on the earth. If you cannot remember believing in God or if you have ceased to believe or if you believe but without real conviction, I invite you to seek a testimony of God now. Do not be afraid of ridicule. The strength and peace that come from knowing God and having the comforting companionship of His Spirit will make your efforts eternally worthwhile.

As a special witness of the Only Begotten Son of our loving Heavenly Father, even Jesus Christ, I testify that God lives. I know He lives. I promise that if you will seek Him in all humility, sincerity, and diligence, you will know with a surety too. Your witness will come.

Photograph by Matt Reier