Notes From a Loving Father in Heaven

We speak to God, our Father, through prayer. Our loving Father in Heaven also speaks to us. When we learn to recognize how God speaks to us personally, we feel His love as a child feels loved by her father.

Notes from our Heavenly Father can be called revelation, blessings, tender mercies, and more. Sometimes they are received as inspiration through thoughts and feelings within. Sometimes through the service of others. And sometimes through the written word. This past week my Father in Heaven sent me a written note of love.

Based on the recommendation of a friend, I watched a video called Spiritual Whirlwinds created from a talk by Elder Neil L. Andersen, an apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ. I was touched by the message of the video and especially by my very favorite scripture quoted within the video, Helaman 5:12, which teaches that “it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation.” When you watch the video, pay attention to the image in the light behind the young man. Jesus Christ is our “sure foundation.”

I planned to show my family the video after our evening family scripture study. Currently we are reading The Book of Mormon from beginning to end, two pages per day. We opened to the pages we would be reading, pages 378 and 379. There in the third verse I read “And now, my sons, remember, remember, that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall” (Helaman 5:12). My favorite scripture. The one I’d seen in the video that day. We happened to be reading that scripture on that particular page on that day. It was a written note from my Father in Heaven. A note that told me that God knows me, loves me, and that I am His daughter. I am a child of God.

The Most Valuable Tip from My Writing class: The Sword of the Spirit is the Word of God

Summer 2018 I took a week-long writing class in Utah. I hoped this would be the class that changed my life. My dream was that my mentor teacher, an editor at a publishing company, would love my manuscript and want to publish it right away. I learned a lot from the class about plotting and was impressed with all the manuscripts from my class members. But mine had so many timelines that it was confusing. I entered every writing contest during the conference and didn’t win a single one. After one class I cried all the way home and bought myself a giant chocolate malt. My hopes and dreams were crushed. No agent drooled over my brilliant words. No editor offered me a publishing contract. I didn’t become best friends with any editors, authors, or agents.

Near the end of the week our class went out to lunch together. I rode with a class member who was an editor at another publishing company, and she told us about a manuscript she was working on. The author proposed that we could receive daily revelation through a short scripture study every day. The key was to ask a question in prayer before studying the scriptures and then to write down the revelation received during scripture study. I decided to try the technique.

I began with a prayer. In that prayer I said, “What should be my question for today?” And it worked! It works every time. Sometimes I already have a question, but most of the time I ask what the question should be. Sometimes the question is “Who should I serve today?” While I’m reading, I get an idea for who to serve. One morning I wrote down the name of a friend I hadn’t seen for a while. I showed up on her doorstep, and when she opened the door she said, “I had a dream you would come.” Before General Conference I wanted a re-affirmation that President Russell M. Nelson is a prophet of God. I was studying the Come Follow Me lesson, and when I read Ephesians 4:11-14, I received my answer. “And he gave some apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ. Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive.” Then I experienced the truth of Paul’s words as I watched General Conference and was reassured of eternal truths. This last week I wanted to know what to emphasize with our neighbors who watch the new Book of Mormon videos with us each week. My answer from my scripture reading was to talk about Jesus Chris which I did.

Today during Sunday School we discussed what we can do to dress ourselves in the armor of God every day as taught by Paul in Ephesians 4:11-17. I realized my daily scripture study and personal revelation arms me with the sword of the Spirit “which is the word of God” to me (Ephesians 6:17) and allows me to cut through distraction and doubt.

After my writing class I pouted for a few months. Now I’m restructuring and revising my novel and it’s much better. I’m not published yet, but my life was changed from taking the writing class. I learned that I can receive daily personal revelation by asking a question, studying my scriptures, writing down the answer, and then acting on it.