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Speaking in French to young adults in Africa, Tahiti, France, Canada, Haiti, the French islands of the Caribbean, and other locations, Elder Neil L. Andersen was joined by his wife, Sister Kathy Andersen, who also speaks French, in reinforcing and encouraging young adults’ faith.
Elder Andersen began with the words of the ancient Apostle Paul, “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1), adding, “Our spirits long to believe in God and long to have faith in Christ.” He then shared six belief-related injunctions.
Believe in God
Elder Andersen explained, “As we look upon the beauties of the earth, the amazing laws of physics and science and how they all connect together, ‘everything denotes there is a God’ (Alma 30:44), everything reveals the handiwork of our Heavenly Father.”
As an example, Elder Andersen described the 6,400-kilometer migration of the Monarch butterfly from Canada to Mexico and then back again as an “amazing demonstration of the wonders of God.” No single butterfly is able to make the entire journey. It takes four generations “without any visible direction” for the butterfly to reach its destination.
Believe You Are a Daughter or Son of God
Recognizing that individuals might not see themselves as unique or special, Elder Andersen testified, “You are a daughter or a son of our Heavenly Father, and He loves you in an incalculable way.”
Some may feel as Enoch, Elder Andersen said, who “bowed himself to the earth, before the Lord, and spake before the Lord, saying: Why is it that I have found favor in thy sight, and am but a lad, and all the people hate me; for I am slow of speech; wherefore am I thy servant? And the Lord said unto Enoch…Behold my Spirit is upon you” (Moses 6:31-32, 34). He opened Enoch’s eyes, and he became a great prophet.
Elder Andersen told listeners. “You are a son or a daughter of God, and you have infinite value.”
Believe You Can Speak to Heavenly Father and He Will Send His Spirit upon You
Sister Andersen invited the young adults to remember the words of President Russell M. Nelson. “Find a quiet place where you can go regularly. Humble yourself before God. Pour out your heart to your Heavenly Father. Turn to him for answers and comfort. Pray in the name of Jesus Christ for your worries, your fears, your weaknesses, yes, for the very longings of your heart” (April 2018 general conference).
Sister Andersen said something special happened as she began to pray like the Prophet suggested. She bore witness that “we do have a Heavenly Father” who is loving, kind, and generous. He understands all—all the feelings of our hearts and souls. He loves us with a love that is more complete, purer, more perfect, more expansive than anything we can imagine. We are His children. If we will call to Him, ‘Father are you there?’ He will hear our prayer. I know this is true.”
Believe We Are an Important Part of Preparing for Christ’s Second Coming
Referencing a talk he gave in the October 2016 general conference, Elder Andersen compared the spreading of the gospel to fill the whole earth to “an enormous puzzle whose pieces will be set in place prior to the events of the Second Coming.”
Each individual is a piece of the puzzle, Elder Andersen explained. “You are important to this great cause. Our view ahead is now clear. We can see the miracle continuing and the Lord’s hand guiding us as we complete the gaps that remain.” The Apostle invited young adults to be “witnesses of God.”
Believe That Others Who You Know Will Embrace the Gospel of Jesus Christ
Quoting the prophet Jeremiah, Elder Andersen said Latter-day Saints must, like fishers, throw their line into the sea or hunt “from every mountain, and from every hill, and out of the holes of the rocks” (Jeremiah 16:16). He noted that those most willing to hear the message of the gospel are “those we know” and invited listeners to be open about their faith in Jesus Christ.
“Be unafraid to share how your faith has improved your life,” Elder Andersen continued. “Invite those who are interested in your example to come with you to the activities of the Church, and if they are willing, to meet with the missionaries. This is one important way we do our part in assembling the magnificent puzzle in preparation to the Savior’s return.”
Believe That Jesus Christ Is the Savior of the World
Elder Andersen said, “For me, there are no words in any language to truly describe the majesty, the power, the glory, or the love of the Son of God.”
As individuals deeply consider his or her own sins and recognize complete dependence upon Jesus Christ, their love for God blossoms. The Apostle taught, “As we understand even the smallest part of the price He paid for our sins, we are filled with never-ending love for Him.”
Speaking on a topic that, he said, “stirs my soul,” Elder Andersen described the “glorious day of the Savior’s return to the earth. The scope and grandeur, the vastness and magnificence, will exceed anything mortal eyes have ever seen or experienced.” In that day the Savior will appear ‘in the clouds of heaven, clothed with power and great glory; with all the holy angels’” (Doctrine and Covenants 45:44).
“In that day the skeptics will be silent, ‘for every ear shall hear …, and every knee shall bow, and every tongue shall confess’ (Doctrine and Covenants 88:104) that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God, the Savior and Redeemer of the world,” Elder Andersen testified.
Five More Area Devotionals Scheduled
Elder Andersen’s live broadcast was the first of six area devotionals designed to reach Latter-day Saint young adults around the world. Read more: 6 devotionals to reach young adults across the globe.
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