Sunday, May 31, 2015

Henry B. Eyring on prayers of gratitude

President Henry B. Eyring (1933- ) served in the Presiding Bishopric from 1985-1992, as a Seventy from 1992-1995, then was called to the Quorum of Twelve Apostles. He has served in the First Presidency since 2007.
"The Holy Ghost brings back memories of what God has taught us. And one of the ways God teaches us is with his blessings; and so, if we choose to exercise faith, the Holy Ghost will bring God's kindnesses to our remembrance.
"You could test that in prayer today. You could follow the command, 'Thou shalt thank the Lord thy God in all things.' (D&C 59:7.) ...
"You could have an experience with the gift of the Holy Ghost today. You could begin a private prayer with thanks. You could start to count your blessings, and then pause for a moment. If you exercise faith, and with the gift of the Holy Ghost, you will find that memories of other blessings will flood into your mind. If you begin to express gratitude for each of them, your prayer may take a little longer than usual. Remembrance will come. And so will gratitude....
"Remembrance is the seed of gratitude which is the seed of generosity. Gratitude for the remission of sins is the seed of charity, the pure love of Christ. And so God has made possible for you and me this blessing, a change in our very natures: 'And the remission of sins bringeth meekness, and lowliness of heart; and because of meekness and lowliness of heart cometh the visitation of the Holy Ghost, which Comforter filleth with hope and perfect love, which love endureth by diligence unto prayer, until the end shall come, when all the saints shall dwell with God.' (Moro. 8:26.)"
- Henry B. Eyring, "Remembrance and Gratitude," Ensign, Nov. 1989, p. 11
Click here to read the full talk
I find this to be a fascinating concept; how does the Holy Ghost teach us? I think the thing Pres. Eyring is suggesting would not have been something I readily thought of, but it makes perfect sense.

The repeated scriptural injunction to remember the past often includes the urging to remember the goodness of God in times past: "I would that ye should remember, and always retain in remembrance, the greatness of God... and his goodness and long-suffering towards you..." (Mosiah 4:11).

President Eyring suggests an experiment. It's a wonderful promise, and a true one:

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