young man with an elderly woman

How Can I Feel the Spirit More?

Do you want to feel the Spirit more fully? It’s possible, and the answer is pretty simple.

"As we practice pure religion, we make a connection with heaven that is made in no other way." - Don R. Clarke

One of the largest problems returned missionaries face is finding a way to feel the Spirit as strongly as they did on their missions. One young man asked Elder Don R. Clarke, a member of the Seventy, for advice.

As Elder Clarke explains in his devotional address “Pure Religion,” this returned missionary wasn’t just asking how he could feel like a missionary again. He was asking a question that each of us should ask every day: “What can I do to be happy, feel the Holy Ghost, and be close to the Savior?”

The answer has to do with living a “pure religion.” But what does that mean? One definition for “pure religion” is found in James 1:27: “Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in their affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.”

Elder Clarke suggests five areas of our lives in which we can practice pure religion:

  1. Care for and visit widows
  2. Help orphans
  3. Care for the needy and the poor
  4. Help lambs (the youth)
  5. Help sheep (members of the Church)

It is by serving others that we truly practice what we preach. If we follow Christ’s plea to feed his sheep (John 21:16), then “we will be happy, feel the Holy Ghost, and feel closer to the Savior . . . [and we will] make a connection with heaven that is made in no other way.”

Read or watch Elder Clarke’s complete remarks on “Pure Religion.”

Source: BYU Speeches
—Leah Welker, Mormon Insights

Find more insights

Want to serve but don’t know how to get started? These links may help.

Are you a student at BYU–Provo? Here is BYU’s service website, Y-Serve.

Volunteer Match is a national site to help you find service opportunities.

Try Just Serve as well. It’s another national site to help you find service opportunities.

Read “The Comforter,” by President Henry B. Eyring, a talk from the April 2015 conference about how we can act with the Holy Ghost to help and comfort others.

Feature photo courtesy of LDS Media Library.

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  1. It’s so hard to feel the spirit, for everyone. I appreciate the article, Though it would be nice to have it geared towards those who haven’t gone on missions at all. Great summary!

  2. This is so true. When i was on a mission i felt the spirit so strong and the reason i did is because i spending my days serving others. We can’t serve others 24/7 like we do on a mission, but we can still find time every day to serve in someway, even at work or school. There are plenty of opportunities for us to do so.

  3. James 1:27 is a great scripture and a great application to answering the question of how we can feel the spirit. And the encouragement to serve ties in really well with the “I was a Stranger” theme discussed in the April 2016 General Women’s session!

  4. Too often we forget that the Lord assigns each of us “sheep” that we can serve on an individual level, at the least every month! I’ve found that when I do my visiting teaching with sincerity, I get that feeling of the Spirit and love and fulfillment – the experience of “pure religion.” I want to be better about actually doing this, but it’s helped me 🙂

  5. Pingback: Cultivating Constant Companionship - Latter-day Saint Insights

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