Watching and praying is a major part of becoming a true disciple of Jesus Christ. In Matthew 26: 41, Christ says to his apostles, after he had suffered in the Garden of Gethsemane, “Watch and pray always, that ye enter not into temptation: the spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.” If Christ is saying this to his disciples, we have even more need to heed to his command. If we watch and pray, as the Lord would have us do, we will have the ability to have more effective personal scripture study, more worthwhile sacrament meetings, and the constant companionship of the Spirit.
Personal scripture study, to some, seems as an event that is just done to show that you are obedient. That is part of it but the main part of personal scripture study is to strengthen our testimony. I have found that the days that I slip and don’t read my scriptures, I feel more depressed and tired but the days that I do read, I feel energized and full of the Spirit. In order to strengthen our testimonies through personal scripture study, we need to watch and pray long before we even begin to read the scriptures. Having a prayer in our hearts before we read will enable us to be more in tune with the Spirit. “And whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, which is right, believing that ye shall receive, behold it shall be given unto you.” (3 Nephi 18: 20) Since scripture reading is “right,” we will then be given a testimony.
In the sacrament prayer, it states that if we “eat in remembrance of the body of the son, and witness unto thee,” (D&C 20: 77) we will have His Spirit to be with us. Many people don’t realize this promise in the Sacrament prayer. You may ask “how do we eat in remembrance of the body of the son,” and the answer is through watching and praying. Watching will enable us to realize the symbolism that is included within the sacrament. Praying will then allow us to feel the Spirit, by watching.
“As Church members, we have completed the necessary steps of faith, repentance, and baptism and have had authorized hands placed on our heads to receive the gift of the Holy Ghost. But just as love between friends or companions must be cultivated and nourished like a tender plant, so likewise must a companionship with the Holy Spirit be cultivated.” (Carlos Asay) To receive the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost, like Carlos Asay is speaking of, we must truly understand how to pray. Prayer involves giving thanks and asking for blessings. In our prayers, one of those blessings must include that we have the Spirit to be with us. After we have been granted with this gift, we must watch as the Spirit helps and assists us in making good choices in our lives. The constant companionship of the Holy Ghost will also allow us to not be tempted above that which we are capable to bear. (Alma 13: 28) Having the Holy Ghost with us throughout the day is one of the greatest blessings that we can have.
In order to obtain all that our father has in store for us, we need to become “submissive, meek, humble patient” (Mosiah 3: 19) and have the ability to watch and pray. If we do these things, we will have the ability to work miracles in Heavenly Fathers name. From experience, I have realized that if I do take the time to watch and pray in my everyday life, I am able to realize all of the many blessings that I have been blessed with. If we all work to make a greater effort in watching and praying, I have a testimony that we will all then be able to have a greater knowledge of our Saviors love for us. And I know that if we know of his love for us, there is nothing that we would do that would not be in accordance with his teachings.
The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ
Pearl of Great Price
“The Companionship of the Holy Ghost” by Elder Carlos Asay of the Seventy
LDS Scripture Concordance