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Almost 200 years ago, 14-year-old Joseph Smith walked into a grove of trees in Palmyra, New York, to seek guidance from his Heavenly Father.
On March 4, 2017, thousands of teenagers followed his example and watched a broadcast from Palmyra, New York, to seek guidance from their Heavenly Father too.
Youth from all around the world submitted their questions, and in a live Q&A, President Eyring of the First Presidency and Elder Holland of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles answered those questions.
But as they did so, they reminded the youth where answers and truth really come from.
“We have received many questions from you, and Elder Holland and I are eager to answer as many as we can,” President Eyring said. “But the answers you need will not come from us. God Himself, who is the true source of light, will answer you through His Spirit.”
The 2017 Mutual theme comes from the scripture that led Joseph Smith to seek truth in the Sacred Grove, James 1:5–6:
“If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
“But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.”
Many of President Eyring’s and Elder Holland’s answers encouraged youth to “ask of God” and find truth, whether it be through earnestly searching the scriptures or humbly asking of God and taking time to listen to His answers.
“I think so often we make prayer a laundry list of requests,” Elder Holland said. “We fail to remember that He is supposed to speak back to us. We need to let Him talk to us in a quiet setting.”
They also answered questions about helping others who are struggling to have faith and sharing the gospel without offending others.
“I learned that it doesn’t matter what other people say as long as you feel it is true,” said Cameron Bunch, 16, who watched the broadcast from her home in Utah. “I know that Joseph Smith is a true prophet and he restored Jesus Christ’s Church on the earth. I had a confirmation of that during this Face to Face event. I have family who aren’t LDS, but I love them very much. I am going to pray to Heavenly Father to ask what I can do to help them receive the blessings of the gospel.”
In the end, President Eyring left the youth with a challenge.
“The challenge is this: come to know for yourself that these things are true,” said President Eyring. “You can do this by following Joseph Smith’s example: study the scriptures, let the words sink deep into your heart, reflect on them again and again, and then ask of God, with a willingness to accept His guidance, truly, His will be done.
“While this challenge may sound like a simple invitation, I promise you it may take significant effort. I cannot promise that your answer will come in a day or in a week, but I can promise that God will speak to you in His own way and in His own time, as you ask in faith. As you accept and act upon this invitation, you will find that not only will answers come, but you’ll establish a pattern of acquiring spiritual knowledge that will bless you for the rest of your life.”
Share Your Experience
What did you learn? What do you want to do differently because of what you learned during this event? Share your experience below.