See the Introductory blog (#1) for explanation about this 6-part blog series on hearing the voice of the Lord in the mind. The below are accounts shared by those who have experienced this spiritual gift and have thereby been able to bless and enlighten others. Most of these are self-explanatory, but if desired readers wishing further context can (in most cases) go to the original source:
For the past two years our family has served a mission in Texas. It has been glorious and fulfilling beyond all expectations. When we first arrived, Sister Featherstone went to the Lord and said: “We don’t have much time. Please let me learn quickly so that the work will go forth.”
Later she said, “The Lord has answered my prayers. He taught me several great lessons. One of those lessons came after the first three or four weeks in the mission field. I was unable to find a few minutes each day to repair to a quiet spot. When I was home I would take about forty-five minutes in the afternoon and go out and curry down my Arabian horse. I would retreat into a world of my own for those few minutes.”
She could not find time for even a few minutes for herself in the mission field. She went to the Lord and knelt in prayer and said, “Please, Heavenly Father, help me to find some time for myself while I am here.”
And she said that just as clear as anything in this world the words came into her mind, saying, “My daughter, this is not your time; this is my time.” We have attempted to work with all our energy while we were on his time. And that work standard is compared to our work standard and not someone else’s.
Elder Neal L. Anderson:
I give you my sure witness that the Lord is such a kind and wonderful and gracious Heavenly Father, that His [Son, our] Savior, never receives a sacrifice in which He doesn’t return to us a thousand times the blessings that come from Him. They don’t always come exactly at the same time. They sometimes come much later, but they always come. I remember that years after my mission when something very good happened to me, and as I prayed and thanked the Lord for the blessing, the thought came into my mind of: “I gave it to you because of what you did for Elder so-and-so”—a mission companion I had had in France as a young man. Totally obscure thought that I could never have put in my mind by myself. The Lord never has us in his debt; He always returns it.
One of the things that I learned soon as a mission president; young missionaries would come into southern France and after a few difficult weeks getting used to the language, the culture, the rejection, the missionary lifestyle, they would come to me and say: “President, this is hard. This is difficult. I don’t know if I can do this, it’s just more than I thought it was.” And I remember I felt very compassionate toward them; I thought, how can I relieve some of the suffering they are feeling? And as I prayed about it I remember the thought coming to me very, very clearly: “You don’t have to worry about their suffering; you didn’t call them, I did. And if they want their suffering relieved, they will have to come to me.” This is part of the power of our experience; when there is sacrifice, when there is opposition, when there is an Adversary, there is only safety and peace in one place and that is in the Lord Jesus Christ and in His Father, our Heavenly Father. When it hurts bad enough your prayers become very sincere and you don’t think about how long your prayer is any more. You pray with great fervor and power.
The first took place in southern Germany. I had been on my mission for two months. It had been a difficult time and I was very discouraged. The language was hard, and we had been rejected and ridiculed and cast out many times. It felt like we were under attack. People had argued with us on points of doctrine, told us we were from the devil, and much worse. I felt the temptations and whispers of doubt about what I was doing. One morning I knelt in prayer and told Heavenly Father of my troubles. It was a heartfelt prayer of real intent. I said to Him, “Heavenly Father, please help me.” As I prayed I heard a voice, as distinct and clear as though someone were standing right next to me. The voice said: Believe in God.
I asked my companion if there were a scripture that said, “Believe in God?” He sent me to the Book of Mormon, Mosiah 4:9.
I sat on the bed and opened the Book of Mormon and read the inspired words of King Benjamin: Believe in God; believe that he is, and that he created all things, both in heaven and in earth; believe that he has all wisdom, and all power, both in heaven and in earth; believe that man doth not comprehend all the things which the Lord can comprehend.
As I read those words I felt as though King Benjamin were speaking to me. I felt the power of the Holy Ghost in my heart. I knew this was the answer to my prayer. My prayer was:
Heavenly Father, please help me. The answer sent me to the Book of Mormon where I received two messages.
The first message: these are my words; this is my book, it is true.
The second message: believe in me. I know all things and I have all wisdom and all power. Trust me.
One of the most sacred responsibilities of a mission president is the assignment of companionships, for it must be done through inspiration. On one occasion, having carefully followed the same procedure as always, I invited a missionary into my office and said, “Elder, you’re going to be thrilled with your new assignment.”
His eyes lit up with enthusiasm. Then, just as I was about to give him his assignment, a powerful impression came to my mind: “No, not there; you can’t send him there.”
The more he stared wide-eyed at me the more uneasy I became. I said, “Just a minute, elder; I’ll be right back,” and, of course, I went to another room and prayed to find out where he should go.
This article is cross-posted with the permission of the author, Dennis B. Horne, from the blog at truthwillprevail.xyz.