Russell m nelson

Sheri Dew | Prophets See around Corners | LDS Living


Have you ever stopped to think about the significance of listening to prophets, seers, and revelators in our lives today? In a world where we are bombarded with information and opinions from every direction, it can be challenging to discern what is truly reliable and trustworthy. But what if I told you that there are individuals who receive revelation and guidance from a higher source, with the ability to see things that we cannot see and understand unique circumstances in the world now? Yes, we’re talking about the living prophets.


Let’s take a look at a real-life example that showcases the foresight and wisdom of prophets. In 2014, Elder Russell M. Nelson emphasized the need for missionaries to have smartphones, despite the concerns and discussions that ensued within the Missionary Executive Council. Fast forward to 2020, and every missionary worldwide was authorized to have a smartphone. Little did they know that just weeks later, the world would be hit by a pandemic, drastically changing the way missionaries could proselytize. But because of the smartphones, missionaries were able to reach out far beyond the confines of their living quarters, resulting in thousands being taught and baptized.


Elder Brent H. Nielson, reflecting on this sequence of events, remarked that the Lord had prepared them for that day and emphasized the remarkable blessing it is to have living prophets. He highlighted that prophets can see around corners, providing insights and guidance that go beyond the opinions and biases of even the smartest experts. It’s truly awe-inspiring to realize that prophets are focused on helping and serving others, rather than seeking followers for themselves.


Now, some may wonder about the infallibility of prophets. It’s important to note that prophets, seers, and revelators are not perfect beings, but they are striving to overcome the natural pressures and ups and downs of mortality. The changes in church policies over time reflect the ongoing restoration and maturing of the church and its members. President Russell M. Nelson himself has stressed that there is much more to come, and the restoration is an ongoing process.


So, in the midst of all the voices clamoring for our attention in the world today, where does the living prophet rank in the list of those to whom we listen for advice? It’s a question we all need to ponder. If we are willing to open our hearts and seek with real intent, having faith in Christ, we can come to know for ourselves that the Lord’s prophets lead us today. And that knowledge will literally change our lives.

Never in the history of the world have people been so saturated with the philosophies of man. In a day when we are inundated with words, where do we go for words upon which we can completely depend? We all know the answer. We can pray, we can read our scriptures, we can go to church and partake of the sacrament, we can attend the temple. And in addition to all those things, we can listen to and he, the words of prophets, seers, and revelators. With permission from President Russell M. Nelson and Elder Brent H. Nielson of the Presidency of the 70, I’d like to share a really instructive sequence of events that reveals a crucial truth and underscores the truth of listening to prophets. In 2014, then-Elder Russell M. Nelson, chaired the Missionary Executive Council. One day in a meeting of the Council, elder Nelson held up his smartphone and said, We need to put of these into the hands of every missionary. Now, you can imagine the discussion that ensued about all the reasons a missionary should never have smartphones. What if they called their girlfriends and their boyfriends, or called home all the time, or a on websites they had no business viewing, or just wasted a lot of time.

But in time, the Missionary Executive Council determined to test the proposition and to allow missionaries in a few test missions to carry smartphones or, in some cases, iPads. Every problem the Council had worried about did in fact happen. But elder Nelson never wavered in his conviction that missionaries could be taught to use the internet righteously and that they needed to have smartphones. So the test continued. And over the next few years, more and more missionaries received phones. Now, fast forward to January of 2020. That month, present President Russell M. Nelson, now President of the Church, authorized every missionary worldwide to have a smartphone. Then, just weeks later, without warning, the pandemic shut the world down and proselytizing as we knew it stopped. Elder Brent H. Nielson was then serving as executive director of the Missionary Department, reporting to President Nielson. Elder Nielson was initially concerned that with the drastic isolation measures imposed most missionaries around the world, baptisms, might drop to nearly zero. But they didn’t. Dedicated, determined missionaries working largely from their apartments found and preached the gospel to thousands and baptized some 125,000 people in the pandemic year of 2020, largely because they had smartphones and could reach out far beyond the confines of their living quarters.

Here’s what elder Nielsen said about that whole sequence. He said, I quickly learned that the Lord had prepared us for this day. Prophets can see around corners. Prophets will help us see things we cannot see. I absolutely believe this. I sometimes worry that those of us who have sung and talked about prophets throughout our lives may be at risk of becoming almost numb to how remarkable the blessing actually is that we have prophets. Why should we listen to and follow prophets today? Because prophets receive revelation that contemplates the unique circumstances in the world now. Their counsel is unencumbered by the opinions, philosophies, and personal biases of even the smartest, brightest, and most accomplished experts. Influencers, as we call them today, tend to look inward, meaning their aim is to attract followers for themselves. No other influencers can see what seers can see or do what seers can do. Seers look outward to help those they serve. Prophets see the path, the covenant path. Our heavenly Father has sent us these special messengers to teach us truth. Their mission is to help us find the path and then stay on the path. That doesn’t mean we should expect prophets, seers, and revelators to be accepted or praised by the the world.

Some of our own members feel compelled to censure the church and its leaders when they disagree with what our leaders say or do. When prophets teach the doctrine of Christ and the great plan of God, the Father himself, there are those who do not like how it sounds because it is foreign to the 21st century saturated ear. Following the prophet is not easy and it’s not popular, and it’s also not blind and obedience. It is active discipleship. Are prophets infallible? Well, if infallible means perfect, then no. Prophets are not perfect. Only one perfect being walked this Earth, and that person was Jesus Christ. Prophets, seers, and revelators are dealing with the normal pressures and the normal ups and downs of mortality. They, too, are trying to the natural man through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ. If prophets see around corners, some may wonder about various church policies that have changed over time. The changes in policy reflect the maturing of the church itself, not to mention its members. President Russell M. Nelson and others have repeatedly stressed that the restoration is ongoing. He said, We are witnesses to a process of restoration. If you think the church has been fully restored, you’re just seeing the beginning.

There is much more to come. Wait ’til next year, and then the next year, eat your vitamin pills, get your rest. It’s going to be exciting. So the question we all face is this, of all the voices on Earth today, Where does the living prophet rank in the list of those to whom you listen for advice? If we choose to let them, prophets will help us see around corners. You can know this, too. If you will seek with real intent, having faith in Christ, you will come to know for yourself that the Lord’s prophets lead us today. And that knowledge will literally change your life.


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