“Ask of God,” New Era, December 2017
This year, as you’ve focused on and lived the 2017 Mutual theme to “Ask of God,” you’ve had incredible and faith-building experiences. Here are just a few shared by youth around the world.
In my whole life, I’ve always prayed to God but sometimes I have questioned myself if I were doing it correctly. The Mutual theme has helped me to improve my prayers in an amazing way. Now I know that God knows each one of us in a way that we can’t imagine. He knows our weaknesses, strengths, fears, and talents. I am so grateful for this theme. When I recite it, read it, and even when I listen to its songs I feel all the love of God inside of my heart.
Enmanuel De los Santos C., 18, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
As soon as I heard this year’s theme was “Ask of God,” I thought there was no way I would receive an answer. I believed I was completely hopeless, so why even waste my time? However a small voice of hope whispered to me, saying, maybe this is it. This could be my chance to seek and receive the answers I’ve been looking for. So with a bit of hope built up inside of me I began to ask of God.
I asked Him how I could be happy even with the extremely unfortunate circumstances of my life, and why would anyone even expect me to be happy?
It took me a few months before I realized I had received my answer, but it wasn’t exactly the answer I had been expecting when I first started to pray about it.
I was waiting for my prayers to be answered by having my life somehow magically become possible to live happily, but instead something better happened. A seed of faith in the gospel had been planted within my heart.
As that seed grew and my testimony became stronger, I felt peace, I felt hope, I felt my Savior’s love. And that’s when I received my answer.
I realized that “the joy we feel has little to do with the circumstances of our lives and everything to do with the focus of our lives.”1
Although the problems and circumstances in my life didn’t change, the focus of my life did.
I began to start being involved in the Church and focusing my life on the gospel again. And that’s when I felt and still feel true happiness, even with my struggles.
Getting through each day has never been easier now that I rely on God and invite the Spirit to be with me. I didn’t just get an answer to my prayers; I now have a strong testimony. I now have day-to-day support, I now see God’s love more than ever, and above all I get to experience pure joy in life.
Ashley B., Texas, USA
I wanted to feel the Spirit more in my life, so I prayed to Heavenly Father and asked how I could do that. I was in a quiet place and I opened the Book of Mormon.
I looked up “Holy Ghost” in the index. I found Alma 13:28, which says, “But that ye would humble yourselves before the Lord, and call on his holy name, and watch and pray continually, that ye may not be tempted above that which ye can bear, and thus be led by the Holy Spirit.” This was a beautiful answer to my prayer. The answer to my prayer was prayer!
As I tried to humbly come before the Lord in prayer and ask for the Spirit, I was able to feel it more in my life. I felt like I had more opportunities to serve, and I felt more connected to Heavenly Father throughout my day.
Even though this was a simple answer to my simple question, it helped strengthen my testimony that when we ask in faith, we will receive the wisdom we need from God.
Olivia T., 13, Hawaii, USA
I’ve been going to church my whole life. I’ve been challenged to read the Book of Mormon and pray to know if it’s true what seems like a thousand times. But I’ve never actually done it before. I had this mind-set where I thought I had to set aside a perfect night, and nothing else could be going on in my life to distract me. I was also scared that I wouldn’t get an answer. But after going to youth conference and hearing all about “Ask of God” so many times, I decided to just try it.
It was a random school night, and I asked God to help me know if the Book of Mormon was true, and then I started reading where I’d left off a few weeks ago. I started to get this feeling of calmness, and a sort of feeling that I already knew it was true. But then I started doubting, wondering whether my brain was making it up because I wanted an answer so badly. I felt really frustrated, but then I looked down at the next verse, which was 2 Nephi 29:10, and it said, “Wherefore, because that ye have a Bible ye need not suppose that it contains all my words; neither need ye suppose that I have not caused more to be written.”
The Spirit hit me so strongly, and it felt like Heavenly Father was speaking directly to me through that verse. I know that the Book of Mormon is true, and that God will answer our prayers. We don’t have to set aside a “perfect night” to ask Him.
Rebekah C., 16, Shanghai, China
I had a question that I prayed about, and I soon realized I was just waiting for an answer and wasn’t doing anything to recieve it. So I started reading and studying the scriptures, and I eventually did receive my answer through the Spirit.
Elena B., 17, Arizona, USA
One night I was starting to get sick, and I was super stressed out and nervous over a test I had the next day. I just felt like I needed to say a prayer. As soon as I folded my arms, an overwhelming peace came over me. Because of that, I knew Heavenly Father was aware of me and no matter what happened, it would all be OK.
Anna C., 16, Montana, USA