“Four Tools That Bring Promised Blessings,” New Era, Apr. 2015, 11–19
Can you imagine trying to build a house without a hammer, a drill, or a saw? What about writing a school report without paper or a computer? Or going camping without a flashlight and matches?
Your house would be rickety at best (no matter how much duct tape you used to compensate), your essay would be nothing more than a bunch of ideas stuck in your head, and your camping trip would be dark and cold. Not to mention all the marshmallows you couldn’t roast.
Tools allow us to do so much more with our time and efforts. The same is true with spiritual things. In the October 2014 general conference, Elder Richard G. Scott of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles spoke about four tools that help us increase our spirituality and center ourselves more on Jesus Christ, our only sure foundation: prayer, scripture study, family home evening, and temple worship.
“Our Father in Heaven has given us tools to help us come unto Christ and exercise faith in His Atonement,” Elder Scott said. “When these tools become fundamental habits, they provide the easiest way to find peace in the challenges of mortality.”1
Elder Scott also promised that “the more we develop these habits, the more anxious is Satan to harm us but the less is his ability to do so.”
The next eight pages show many more blessings that God has promised, through His chosen leaders, when we use these four tools. As you read through the promises, think how you’ve seen them in your own life. What would life be like for you and your family if you had these blessings more abundantly? What can you do to more fully live these commandments?
As you use these tools so often that they become habits in your life, you can be happy that you are “securing your life in the power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ.”2
“And the Spirit shall be given unto you by the prayer of faith.”
“Pray always, that you may come off conqueror; yea, that you may conquer Satan, and that you may escape the hands of the servants of Satan that do uphold his work.”
“As you pray for forgiveness, you will find yourself forgiving others. …
“… One way you will be changed by such fervent prayer is, I promise you, that you will feel truly that you are a child of God.”
President Henry B. Eyring, First Counselor in the First Presidency, “The Priesthood Man,” Ensign, May 2014, 64.
“Watch and pray, that ye enter not into temptation.”
“To those within the sound of my voice who are struggling with challenges and difficulties large and small, prayer is the provider of spiritual strength; it is the passport to peace. … Miracles are wrought through prayer.”
President Thomas S. Monson, “Be Your Best Self,” Ensign, May 2009, 68.
“Humble, trusting prayer brings direction and peace.”
Elder Richard G. Scott of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “Using the Supernal Gift of Prayer,” Ensign, May 2007, 8.
“Prayer is a great tower of strength, a pillar of unending righteousness, a mighty force that moves mountains and saves souls. Through it the sick are healed, the dead are raised, and the Holy Spirit is poured out without measure upon the faithful.”
Elder Bruce R. McConkie (1915–1985) of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “Patterns of Prayer,” Ensign, May 1984, 32.
“I tell you this: God cares about you. He will listen, and He will answer your personal questions. The answers to your prayers will come in His own way and in His own time, and therefore, you need to learn to listen to His voice.”
President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, “Receiving a Testimonyof Light and Truth,” Ensign, Nov. 2014, 21.
“I must testify of the blessings of daily scripture study and prayer and weekly family home evening. These are the very practices that help take away stress, give direction to our lives, and add protection to our homes.”
Linda S. Reeves, second counselor in the Relief Society general presidency, “Protection from Pornography—a Christ-Focused Home,” Ensign, May 2014, 16–17.
“The scriptures can also help us obtain answers to highly specific personal questions.”
Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, in Scripture Study—the Power of the Word Teacher Manual, rev. ed. (Church Educational System manual, 2001), 45.
“Privately studying, pondering, and communicating with your Heavenly Father can make an amazing difference in your lives. It will give increased success in your daily activities. It will bring increased alertness to your minds. It will give you comfort and rock-steady assurance when the storms of life descend upon you.”
Elder M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “Be Strong in the Lord, and in the Power of His Might” (Church Educational System fireside, Mar. 3, 2002), 4; speeches.byu.edu.
“I feel certain that if, in our homes, [families] will read from the Book of Mormon prayerfully and regularly, … mutual respect and consideration for each other will grow. the spirit of contention will depart. … Faith, hope, and charity—the pure love of Christ—will abound in our homes and lives.”
President Marion G. Romney (1897–1988), First Counselor in the First Presidency, “The Book of Mormon,” Ensign, May,1980, 67.
“Whoso would hearken unto the word of God, and would hold fast unto it, they would never perish; neither could the temptations and the fiery darts of the adversary overpower them unto blindness, to lead them away to destruction.”
“Through daily, consistent scripture study, you will find peace in the turmoil around you and strength to resist temptations. You will develop strong faith in the grace of God and know that through the Atonement of Jesus Christ all will be made right according to God’s timing.”
Elder Richard G. Scott of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “Make the Exercise of Faith Your First Priority,” Ensign, Nov. 2014, 93–94.
“The Holy Ghost will guide what we say if we study and ponder the scriptures every day.”
President Henry B. Eyring, First Counselor in the First Presidency, “Feed My Lambs,” Ensign, Nov. 1997, 83.
“We cannot afford to neglect this heaven-inspired program [of family home evening]. It can bring spiritual growth to each member of the family, helping him or her to withstand the temptations which are everywhere. The lessons learned in the home are those that last the longest.”
President Thomas S. Monson, “Constant Truths for Changing Times,” Ensign, May 2005, 19.
“Regular participation in family home evening will develop increased personal worth, family unity, love for our fellowmen, and trust in our Father in heaven. It is our promise that great blessings Will come to all who conscientiously plan and hold weekly family home evenings.”
“Message from the First Presidency,” in Family Home Evening (1976), 3.
“Families who prayerfully prepare and consistently hold their weekly Home Evening, and who work together during the week to apply the lessons in their lives, will be blessed. There will be better feelings between husband and wife, between parents and children, and among children. In such homes the Spirit of the Lord will be made manifest.”
President David O. McKay (1873–1970), in Family Home Evening Manual (1967), iii–iv.
“And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord; and great shall be the peace of thy children.”
“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”
“Whether we are young or old, single or married, whether we have children at home or have become empty nesters, family home evening can increase unity and love in our homes.”
President James E. Faust (1920–2007), Second Counselor in the First Presidency, “Enriching Our Lives through Family Home Evening,” Ensign, June 2003, 3.
“Each family prayer, eachepisode of family scripture study, and each family home evening is a brushstroke on the canvas of our souls. No one event may appear to be very impressive or memorable. But just as … strokes of paint complement each other and produce an impressive masterpiece, so our consistency in doing seemingly small things can lead to significant spiritual results.”
Elder David A. Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “More Diligent and Concerned at Home,” Ensign, Nov. 2009, 19–20.
“The eternally significant blessing of uniting our own families is almost beyond comprehension.”
Elder Quentin L. Cook of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “Roots and Branches,” Ensign, May 2014, 47.
“The house of the Lord will have a refining effect upon you. It will cultivate unselfishness within your lives. It will build righteousness. It will impress upon you the importance of doing what you ought to do.”
President Gordon B. Hinckley (1910–2008), “Inspirational Thoughts,” Ensign, Mar. 2006, 6.
“There is a power associated with the ordinances of heaven—even the power of godliness—which can and will thwart the forces of evil. “… Our families will be protected, our children will be safeguarded as we live the gospel, visit the temple, and live close to the Lord.”
President Ezra Taft Benson (1899–1994), Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Ezra Taft Benson (2014), 172.
“As we go to the holy house, … we will be able to bear every trial and overcome each temptation. The temple provides purpose for our lives. It brings peace to our souls.”
President Thomas S. Monson, “Blessings of the Temple,” Ensign, Oct. 2010, 15.
“Divine covenants help us to filter out of our minds impurities that could harm us.”
Elder Russell M. Nelson of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, “Personal Preparation for Temple Blessings,” Ensign, May 2001, 34.
“I will manifest myself to my people in mercy in this house.
“Yea, I will appear unto my servants, and speak unto them with mine own voice, if my people will keep my commandments, and do not pollute this holy house.”
“When members of the Church attend the temple regularly, inner peace calms the soul; the Spirit of the Lord permeates the home; love and respect deepen between family members; problems are more clearly defined; solutions are more apparent; emotions are more serene in family relations.”
Elder Royden G. Derrick (1915–2009) of the Presidency of the Seventy, Temples in the Last Days (1987), 156.