Thursday, February 26, 2009

The Miracle of a Change of Heart

Elder Dallin H. Oaks said this about miracles, “Many miracles happen everyday in the work of the Church and in the lives of our members. Many of you have witnessed miracles, perhaps more than you realize.”

I believe there are miracles all around us, and we simply do not take time to recognize them.

President Spencer W. Kimball stated, “We do have miracles today- beyond imagination! What kinds of miracles do we have? All kinds- revelations, visions, tongues, healings, special guidance and direction, evil spirits cast out. Where are they recorded? In the records of the Church, in journals, in news and magazine articles and in the minds and memories of people.”

Miracles played a very large part in the establishing of the LDS Church upon the earth in these latter days. In the records of the early church history, miracles are recorded as happening very frequently. I have had many a student ask me, “Why don’t we hear about those kinds of miracles today?” Elder Oaks explained three possibilities:

  • Most of the miracles we experience are not to be shared.It is only when the spirit prompts us to share that we do so.
  • Miracles may be given for YOUR profit and salvation.
  • Always remember signs follow those that believe first.

Brigham Young stated, “Miracles, or these extraordinary manifestations of the power of God, are not for the unbeliever; they are to console the saints, and to strengthen and confirm the faith of those who love, fear, and serve God, and not for outsiders.”

The scriptures are replete with stories of people who had been converted through signs and wonders who soon forgot them. They again became susceptible to the lies and distortions of Satan and his servants.

In Helaman 16:23 we read about the people during that time:

“And notwithstanding the signs and the wonders which were wrought among the people of the Lord, and the many miracles which they did, Satan did get great hold upon the hearts of the people upon all the face of the land.”

Therefore, Elder Oaks suggests that the greatest miracle of all that can be experienced is “the mighty change of heart by a son or daughter of God.”

“A change of heart including new attitudes, priorities, and desires, is greater and more important than any miracle involving the body. I repeat, the body will be resurrected in any event, but a change affecting what the scriptures call the ‘heart’ of a spirit son or daughter of God is a change whose effect is eternal.”

This simple change of heart can open the door to repentance allowing us to become clean enough to dwell with God. It introduces perspectives and priorities that lead us to make choices that qualify us for Eternal Life. Is it any wonder that the Lord requires a willing heart?

This great miracle of a change of heart is brought about by faith in Jesus Christ, unto spiritual rebirth and is the way we become sons and daughters of Jesus Christ. That is a great miracle indeed.

1 comment:

In The Doghouse said...

A comment sent to me by my dear friend Glenna.
I don't know if we could actually count all the miracles we see in our own family. They are every where around us. How many blessings have been given to our children and to our 21 grandchildren where healing has occurred? Honestly, so many times I can not count. The latest was just a couple of weeks ago. Ryan and Sarah had been up for hours with their one year old who was struggling to breathe. Ryan gave him a blessing in the middle of the night. He settled down and slept. The next day Sarah took the baby to the doctor. Nothing was wrong with him. I know in our family, and I am certain it is the same in many, many other's families, that this kind of thing happens so often that we trust it to be apart of our normal lives. The power of the priesthood is real. It continues to bless, heal, comfort, protect, direct, enlighten, assure and in other ways intervenes in our lives on a daily basis.

As the world becomes more and more wicked, we will see the stakes of Zion grow in power to the degree that we are obedient and learn to to unite our faith in the well being of those around us. I can not get out of my mind where we need to be as a church in power and authority as revealed in D&C 45: 66-71. We aren't there yet, but we are born to raise up a generation who will get there. All the powers and gifts of the priesthood will be there. I know this to be true.