Tuesday, January 27, 2015

McKenna's Sacrament Meeting Farewell Talk

Roles of the Holy Ghost

I ask and pray that each of you invite the spirit to be with each of us. I ask the spirit be with me in that I may convey the Lords will in my talk.
Article of Faith #1 states:
We believe in God, the Eternal Father, and in his son, Jesus Christ and in the Holy Ghost.

What a wonderful blessing for us to know this eternal truth. These three glorious persons are so important and who have done so much for each of us. When the prophet Joseph Smith wrote the Articles of Faith, he knew that it was important for us to know about the Godhead. His experience in the Sacred Grove involved all three members and was a testimony of this eternal truth.
Today I was asked to speak about the roles of the Holy Ghost.

First of all, The Holy Ghost is the third member of the Godhead. He is a personage of spirit without a body of flesh and bones. He is often referred to as the Spirit, the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of God, the Spirit of the Lord, and the Comforter. He is the source of personal testimony and revelation. He can guide us in our decisions and protect us from physical and spiritual danger.  The Holy Ghost bears witness of the Father and the Son, reveals the truth of all things and sanctifies those who repent and are baptized.
Elder Joseph B. Wirthlin shares this in his talk “The Unspeakable Gift.”

The Holy Ghost is a personage of Spirit, a separate and distinct member of the Godhead. 4 He is a witness or testifier of the power of God, the divinity of Christ, and the truth of the restored gospel. Many throughout history in all nations have sought diligently to commune with the heavens and gain the light of gospel truth. They have felt the influence of the Holy Ghost confirm the truth of the gospel.

The Prophet Joseph Smith explained: “There is a difference between the Holy Ghost and the gift of the Holy Ghost. Cornelius received the Holy Ghost before he was baptized, which was the convincing power of God unto him of the truth of the Gospel, but he could not receive the gift of the Holy Ghost until after he was baptized. Had he not taken this … ordinance upon him, the Holy Ghost which convinced him of the truth of God, would have left him.” 5

The gift of the Holy Ghost, which is the right to receive the Holy Ghost as a constant companion, is obtained only upon condition of faith in Christ, repentance, baptism by immersion, and the laying on of hands by authorized servants endowed with the Melchizedek Priesthood. It is a most precious gift available only to worthy members of the Lord’s Church.

In the Doctrine and Covenants, the Lord calls the gift of the Holy Ghost “the unspeakable gift.” 6 It is the source of testimony and spiritual gifts. It enlightens minds, fills our souls with joy, 7 teaches us all things, and brings forgotten knowledge to our remembrance. 8 The Holy Ghost also “will show unto [us] all things what [we] should do.” 9

President James E. Faust added that the gift of the Holy Ghost “is the greatest guarantor of inward peace in our unstable world.”
President Gordon B. Hinckley taught us, “how great a blessing it is to have the ministering influence of a member of the Godhead.” Think about what this means, the ability and the right to receive the ministrations of a member of the Godhead, to commune with infinite wisdom, infinite knowledge and infinite power.

As with all gifts, this gift must be received and accepted to be enjoyed.

What a wonderful gift and blessing that we all have. You can receive a sure testimony of Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ thru the power of the Holy Ghost. His communication to your spirit carries far more certainty than any communication you can receive through your natural senses. I know that throughout my life, the Holy Ghost has helped build my testimony and has helped shaped the person I am today.
The decision for me to serve a mission was one that I didn’t suspect or even plan on. Growing up I didn’t think a lot about a mission. I briefly thought about it but new it was a long ways away. Especially, with the mission age for females being 21. I always knew I had some time. Then in the October 2012 General Conference, it was announced that the age was going to be changed for missionaries. When I heard that, I stressed a little bit because the time was coming closer and I felt like I had less time to make a decision. I didn’t think about a mission again until I watched a girl I had knew from High School receiving her mission call video. For some reason I felt the spirit so strongly during her video and I had the idea to serve a mission, so I knelt down to pray and asked my Heavenly Father if I needed to serve a mission. I never got an answer to the pray so I just didn’t think about it.

And then on September 24th of 2014 at around 11 pm, I all of a sudden got really emotional.  My heart was so full so, I knelt down to pray, and between my heavy tears, I asked Heavenly Father again If it be thy will Lord, I will go and serve a mission. I will do whatever you want me to do. After I said my prayer, I felt this weight lifted from my shoulders and a feeling of peace came over my body and I knew that I needed to serve a mission. The Holy Ghost that night helped me know what my Heavenly Father wanted me to do. The spirit has helped me in taking the right path so that I am worthy to be able to serve a mission.

This last year, I have been reading my Patriarchal Blessing and seeing the blessings that I may receive regularly. And after making the decision to serve a mission I found that there are many points that talk about my mission on this earth and the responsibilities that I have from my precious heritage and lineage through Ephraim. My Patriarchal Blessing has been another confirmation that it is the right decision for me to serve a mission.

In 2 Nephi 32:5 it reads, “For behold, again I say unto you that if ye will enter in by the way, and receive the Holy Ghost, it will show you all things what ye should do.” As you strive to stay on the path that leads to eternal life, the Holy Ghost “will show unto you all things what [you] should do”. He can guide you in your decisions and protect you from physical and spiritual danger. Through Him, you can receive gifts of the Spirit for your benefit and for the benefit of those you love and serve. I know that when I am serving the great people of the Mississippi, Jackson Mission, the Holy Ghost will help me so that I am able to teach the people about this great and true church of our Heavenly Father. I have heard stories from missionaries that when they were teaching a lesson, the spirit helped them to be able to teach the investigator what they needed to hear and after they didn’t remember what they taught because the spirit had basically took over the lesson. It is through the influence of the Holy Ghost that we receive knowledge of Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and helps so that we are able to feel the love that they have for us.

In Matthew 28:19-20; which is my personal scripture, it reads:

            Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.

            God be with till we meet again. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen

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