“Are you and I agents who act and seek learning by faith, or are we waiting to be taught and acted upon?”
Elder David A. Bednar shared insights rich with imagery about the power of faith in an address reported in the Religious Educator.
Elder Bednar outlined three basic elements of faith:
- Faith is the assurance of things hoped for which are true.
We receive assurance and hope as we come to know God and as we learn to trust him. Because we know that he will love and support us, we are able to make important life decisions with confidence, even when we don’t know what will happen. “Assurance and hope make it possible for us to walk to the edge of the light and take a few steps into the darkness—expecting and trusting the light to move and illuminate the way.”
- Faith is the evidence of things not seen.
We receive evidence of our faith as we reflect on times when we acted, stepping into the darkness, and “the light in fact moved and provided the illumination we needed. The witness we obtained after the trial of our faith (see Ether 12:6) is evidence that enlarges and strengthens our assurance.” When we see these times when God was there for us, our trust in him grows.
- Faith is the principle of action in all intelligent beings.
The cycle of having hope, acting on faith, and receiving evidence continues. Each time, it builds our faith and grants us greater confidence and greater power to act.
These three principles make it possible to look to the future, face our pasts, and act now rather than wait to be acted upon.
Read Elder Bednar’s article, “Seek Learning by Faith.”
Source: Religious Studies Center
—Carissa Burton, Mormon Insights
Find more insights
Watch Elder Bednar’s address on faith.
Watch Elder Bednar’s three-part series of three-minute videos, “Patterns of Light”:
Watch a 15-minute video by Elder Richard G. Scott, “The Transforming Power of Faith and Character.”
I love Elder Bednar’s message of trusting in God and the light we do have in front of us to take steps forward. One of my favorite illustrations features a man holding a torch which gives off light to just the few steps ahead of him. Even though the man cannot see to the end of his path, he moves forward. At the end, he looks back to see the entire path illuminated and his future appears brighter. We can “look to the future, face our pasts, and act now rather than wait to be acted upon” as we trust in our Savior and in the light we have received from our Heavenly Father.