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The power of prayer

On Tuesday, Nov. 8 at 11:30 a.m., Elder Kazuhiko Yamashita, a General Authority Seventy, gave his devotional address in the BYU-Idaho Center. He focused his talk on the importance of amplifying everyday prayer and how it can be done.

He started by sharing a personal experience of how fervent prayer helped him in deciding his career. He felt the urge to pray as Enos did in the Book of Mormon. While praying helped him feel more complete, he still lacked answers. When he eventually received these answers, he knew they came directly from God due to his emotions that came from praying.

“I started praying in the morning, meditated repeatedly, prayed again and my thoughts of my future gradually solidified,” Yamashita said. “And my heart became increasingly calm and peaceful.”

He went on to share five suggestions as to how individuals may improve their daily prayer and better understand when God is giving an answer and what that answer might look like:

1. Ponder deeply

2. Pray with sincerity

3. Use proper language that shows love, respect, reverence and closeness

4. Always give thanks to your Heavenly Father

5. Seek Heavenly Father’s guidance and strength in all you do

Sister Yamashita addressing students at devotional.
Sister Yamashita addressing students at devotional. Photo credit: Tatum Troescher

His wife, Sister Tazuko Yamashita joined in the address as she explained the significance of the first suggestion, which is to ponder deeply. She spoke of how doing this alone can help individuals to receive revelation.

“I started to wonder if I should go on my mission or get married,” Tazuko said. “I was pondering about that from the bottom of my heart. One day, the Holy Spirit spoke strongly and clearly to me again: ‘Don’t worry about your future. Peace be unto your soul.'”

In closing, Kazuhiko promised blessings to all those who would fervently pray unto God as both he and Enos did in the stories he told. He also shared his testimony of prayer and how loving Heavenly Father is to each of His children.

“My dear friends, I am sure many of you have wrestled before God before in prayer,” Kazuhiko said. “It is wonderful. That experience will bring you many benefits. Your testimony will be strengthened. I bear my witness that our Heavenly Father does live indeed and that He loves us. He knows each of us. He knows our desires. He listens to our prayers.”

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