Many times in the Book of Mormon, we are promised that God will answer our prayers. An essential element of effective prayers is faith—the belief or confidence that God will answer us. The Lord promised Enos, “Whatsoever thing ye shall ask in faith, believing that ye shall receive in the name of Christ, ye shall receive it” (Enos 1:15). And the Savior later affirmed, “Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, which is right, believing that ye shall receive, behold it shall be given unto you” (3 Nephi 18:20).
Three and a half years after the First Vision, Joseph Smith prayed for forgiveness of his sins, and to understand where he stood with God. He later wrote, “I had full confidence in obtaining a divine manifestation, as I previously had one.” In response, the angel Moroni appeared to him with the assurance that God had a work for him to do (Joseph Smith—History 1:29, 33).
Why do we need faith to receive answers to our prayers? Perhaps one reason is because we would never dedicate sufficient time and energy to prayer if we didn’t believe that our prayers would be answered.
In this month’s Liahona magazine, President Russell M. Nelson provides the following guidance about how to receive personal revelation:
- “Immerse ourselves in the scriptures.”
- “Pray in His name about our worries and our weaknesses, our longings and our loved ones, our callings and our questions.”
- “Listen. If we will stay on our knees for a while after we finish our prayer, thoughts, feelings, and direction will come into our mind. Recording those impressions will help us remember what actions the Lord would have us take.”
President Nelson also emphasized the importance of personal worthiness in receiving revelation. If something isn’t right in our lives, he encouraged us to “repent, so that we can hear the voice of the Lord more frequently and clearly.”
As we repeat these actions, President Nelson promised that we will grow closer to God and improve our ability to receive revelation from Him (“Grow into the Principle of Revelation,” Liahona, January 2021).
Today, I will “ask in faith.” With confidence in God, I will dedicate time and energy to the process of study, prayer, and listening so that I can hear His voice.