“God Speaks to Us Today,” Liahona, January 2021, 10–11
Two hundred years ago, Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ appeared to a teenager named Joseph Smith. This First Vision teaches us important truths. Jesus is once again leading a Church on the earth. Prophets exist today as in ancient times. And God knows each of us by name and is listening to our prayers. We are blessed when we try to hear His voice each day.
When God talks to His children, it’s called “revelation.” There are different kinds of revelation.
Personal revelation is when God speaks to us individually through the Holy Ghost. He can comfort and guide us.
We can also receive revelation about how to help those we have been called to lead. For example, parents can receive revelation about their families, and a bishop can receive revelation about his ward.
Only the prophet can receive revelation for the whole Church, but each of us can pray to know if what our leaders teach is true.
We can speak to a loving, all-powerful, all-knowing Heavenly Father at any time through prayer. He wants us to thank Him for blessings, talk to Him about our lives, and ask for what we need. Then we should pay attention to the thoughts and feelings that come from the Holy Ghost, who is like a messenger from our Heavenly Father.
There is no single way to describe revelation. God speaks to each of us in a way we will understand (see Doctrine and Covenants 1:24). People sometimes experience dreams and visions. But more often, God speaks to us through quiet feelings from the Holy Ghost, like warmth, peace, or joy.
In this month’s study of the Doctrine and Covenants, we read about Oliver Cowdery, who was taught that revelation would come to both his mind and heart (see Doctrine and Covenants 8:2).
Many scripture stories describe God speaking to His people:
God told Noah how to keep his family safe (see Genesis 6:17–18).
Heavenly Father and Jesus comforted a disciple named Stephen (see Acts 7:55).
Revelation helped Nephi keep the commandments (see 1 Nephi 4:6).
While other scriptures come from ancient records, the Doctrine and Covenants is made up of modern revelations. This year we have the special opportunity of studying a book filled with the direct words of the Lord.