Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Companionship of the Holy Ghost, a True Gift

Today I read 1 Thessalonians 1 which is basically Paul's greeting to the Saints in Thessalonia. There's honestly not a lot of meat in this chapter to pick out. The only thing in there that really stands out to me is the part about the Holy Ghost. I have always been fascinated by the Holy Ghost, even as a little child and wondered how He did His job.

The Holy Ghost has a job just like Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. His job is to testify of truth and everyone in the world has the ability to feel His influence. I remember people on my mission would have a hard time understanding this concept, they would wonder how everyone could feel the influence of the Holy Ghost. We would explain that it's like the sun. The sun is in one central place, but it's light and warmth can be felt all over the world. So it is with the Holy Ghost. Because He testifies of truth, His influence is able to be felt all over the world.

Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints get to have the Holy Ghost for a constant companion too. Someone once asked Joseph Smith what the main difference between the LDS church was and other Christian religions and he replied that it was the Gift of the Holy Ghost. We are the only church that believes we can have the companionship of the Holy Ghost at all times as long as we remain worthy of it. Now, the question then remains what does the companionship of the Holy Ghost do for us? Well, for one thing, He still testifies of truth but He also increases our understanding. My dad, a convert to the LDS church, once told me that he had tried to read the Bible several times before joining the LDS church and could not make heads or tails of it when he tried. However, after getting the Gift of the Holy Ghost, he was able to read and understand the Bible almost as clearly as he understood the Book of Mormon.

The Gift of the Holy Ghost is not like the Light of Christ, what people commonly call our conscience. The Gift of the Holy Ghost can warn us however if a situation is spiritually damaging. If we are about to make an incorrect choice He will warn us about it and so people sometimes get confused thinking He acts like our conscience. But that is not the Holy Ghost's main function as our companion. He is still there to testify of truth and help us in turn testify of truth. If we are worthy enough, we can also have Him testify of truth through us. When people say we are different or that we have a light inside of us, it is the Holy Ghost shining through. We are living so righteously that He is our companion and that He is able to show through you and give you missionary opportunities.

Truly the Gift of the Holy Ghost is a wonderful gift that God has granted to us. We should always take advantage of it and not offend Him in any way. We need to make sure that like any of our friends we are worthy of His friendship and do not drive Him away through our sinful ways. As we strive to live a righteous life and to be worthy of His companionship, we will notice when He is not around. If you have ever had the misfortune of doing something so bad that He doesn't just quietly leave, but that His leaving is so quick, so fierce, it's almost physically painful and leaves a gap in your heart. I have felt that pain unfortunately. It has not always been caused by me either. Sometimes it happens because others around me are not doing what is right and I did not leave the situation quickly enough. We never want to do anything to offend the Holy Ghost. He should be our best and truest friend. He does more for us than just about anyone save Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. We need to make sure we treat Him and His presences as the treasured companion they should be. Until tomorrow.

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