Knowing Of vs. Knowing (What is the difference?) We all know of famous celebrities. We can even kid ourselves into thinking we know them as we learn superficially about them. But I want you to think of a close family member or friend, a confidant that you trust. This person you begin to know in a way totally different than a distant celebrity.
Heavenly Father desires a personal relationship with each of His children! He wants to know you and you to really know Him.
What can we do to gain that relationship and knowledge?
Here are three examples of people like you who wanted to know. Read and consider each experience. Could you experience something similar?
Enos’ Wrestle with the Lord
Enos1: 3-8 “Behold, I went to hunt beasts in the forests; and the words which I had often heard my father speak concerning eternal life, and the joy of the saints, sunk deep into my heart. And my soul hungered; and I kneeled down before my Maker, and I cried unto him in mighty prayer and supplication for mine own soul; and all the day long did I cry unto him; yea, and when the night came I did still raise my voice high that it reached the heavens. And there came a voice unto me, saying: Enos, thy sins are forgiven thee, and thou shalt be blessed. And I, Enos, knew that God could not lie; wherefore, my guilt was swept away. And I said: Lord, how is it done? And he said unto me: Because of thy faith in Christ …”
King Lamoni’s Fathers Prayer
Alma 22:15-18 “And it came to pass that after Aaron had expounded these things unto him, the king said: What shall I do that I may have this eternal life of which thou hast spoken? Yea, what shall I do that I may be born of God, having this wicked spirit rooted out of my breast, and receive his Spirit, that I may be filled with joy, that I may not be cast off at the last day? Behold, said he, I will give up all that I possess, yea, I will forsake my kingdom, that I may receive this great joy. But Aaron said unto him: If thou desirest this thing, if thou wilt bow down before God, yea, if thou wilt repent of all thy sins, and will bow down before God, and call on his name in faith, believing that ye shall receive, then shalt thou receive the hope which thou desirest. And it came to pass that when Aaron had said these words, the king did bow down before the Lord, upon his knees; yea, even he did prostrate himself upon the earth, and cried mightily, saying: O God, Aaron hath told me that there is a God; and if there is a God, and if thou art God, wilt thou make thyself known unto me, and I will give away all my sins to know thee, and that I may be raised from the dead, and be saved at the last day.”
Joseph Smith-First Vision
Joseph Smith-History 14-17 “So, in accordance with this, my determination to ask of God, I retired to the woods to make the attempt. …It was the first time in my life that I had made such an attempt, for amidst all my anxieties I had never as yet made the attempt to prayvocally. …having looked around me, and finding myself alone, I kneeled down and began to offer up the desires of my heart to God. I had scarcely done so, when immediately I was seized upon by some power which entirely overcame me, and had such an astonishing influence over me as to bind my tongue so that I could not speak. Thick darkness gathered around me, and it seemed to me for a time as if I were doomed to sudden destruction. But, exerting all my powers to call upon God to deliver me out of the power of this enemy which had seized upon me, and at the very moment when I was ready to sink into despair and abandon myself to destruction—not to an imaginary ruin, but to the power of some actual being from the unseen world, who had such marvelous power as I had never before felt in any being—just at this moment of great alarm, I saw a pillar of light exactly over my head, above the brightness of the sun, which descended gradually until it fell upon me. It no sooner appeared than I found myself delivered from the enemy which held me bound. When the light rested upon me I saw two Personages, whose brightness and glory defy all description, standing above me in the air. One of them spake unto me, calling me by name and said, pointing to the other—This is My BelovedSon. Hear Him!”
Each of these individuals wanted to know!
You can know too!
Are you willing to take the opportunity to test for yourself Moroni’s challenge? Find a place that you can be alone and undisturbed. Get comfortable, and read and ponder this challenge:
Moroni 10: 3-7 “Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how merciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and ponder it in your hearts. And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost. And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things. And whatsoever thing is good is just and true; wherefore, nothing that is good denieth the Christ, but acknowledgeth that he is. And ye may know that he is, by the power of the Holy Ghost; wherefore I would exhort you that ye deny not the power of God; for he worketh by power, according to the faith of the children of men, the same today and tomorrow, and forever.”
Now kneel with a humble and believing heart and ask, “Heavenly Father are you really there? Do you love me enough to desire a relationship with me? Are these examples true? Is the Book of Mormon, the source of this promise, true? Will you make yourself known unto me?” and then quietly listen after each question for an answer “in your mind” and a feeling “in your heart”.
I personally have experienced what you will experience and your life will never be the same again after you do.