“3 Ways Prophets Are Evidence That God Loves You,” Ensign, December 2018
How do you know that God loves you? For me, it’s seeing gorgeous sunsets, finding the perfect message for my day in the scriptures, or receiving sweet texts from friends. But an even more powerful witness of God’s love for me is having a living prophet on earth today. Elder Dieter F. Uchtdorf of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, then Second Counselor in the First Presidency, said, “Because Heavenly Father loves His children, He has not left them to walk through this mortal life without direction and guidance.”1 Here are three ways we can feel God’s love through a living prophet.
Since the beginning, God has always given revelation to prophets. The Lord has said, “Whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is the same” (D&C 1:38). Members of the Church have been blessed collectively and individually because of modern revelations, including the translation and publication of the Book of Mormon, the building of temples, and the focus on ministering to one another.
For me personally, my life was changed by President Thomas S. Monson (1927–2018) in 2012 when he announced that sisters could serve missions at age 19. I felt so much love and trust from God in that moment, and because of that announcement I was able to leave on my mission six days after my 19th birthday. My decision to serve at that time has shaped the course of my whole life.
God also shows His love by blessing us with specific messages meant for us through prophets’ counsel. But we still have to listen carefully and ask ourselves, “What part of this message is for me?” Whenever my prayers or questions are answered through the messages of the prophets and apostles, the Spirit touches me with the knowledge that God loves me and knows me personally.
Heavenly Father has given us a prophet for our day, President Russell M. Nelson. Although he might be decades older than you, his life experience is actually a huge advantage as he shares wisdom and counsel from God. With our needs in mind, Heavenly Father has prepared President Nelson with experiences throughout his life and continues to divinely guide him so that he can teach and understand our generation.
President Nelson holds all the keys to receive revelation. Heavenly Father, who is fully aware of the struggles and needs of our generation, gives revelation to President Nelson on how he can best teach and guide us. President Nelson’s devotional “Becoming True Millennials,”2 where he taught the Lord’s counsel and advice to millennials, is evidence that Heavenly Father uses President Nelson to help guide us through life.
Because Heavenly Father loves us so much, He wants us to be safe physically and spiritually. We have to be wary of all the voices in the noisy world, but we can always trust the prophet’s voice because God has lovingly promised us that He will never allow the prophet to lead us astray. President Nelson has asked us to read the Book of Mormon each day and receive personal revelation to stay spiritually safe.3 He said, “I urge you to stretch beyond your current spiritual ability to receive personal revelation.”4
Prophets are just one of many ways Heavenly Father shows how much He cares about us and knows us personally. Elder Ulisses Soares of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles taught, “Having prophets is a sign of God’s love for His children. They make known the promises and the true nature of God and of Jesus Christ to Their people.”5 As I have trusted the prophets’ words and heeded their counsel, I have received answers to my questions. I am so grateful for these manifestations of God’s love.