1. I believe in Jesus Christ because God has answered my prayers. Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints are strongly encouraged to pray to God for personal inspiration regarding the reality of Jesus Christ and whether the claims made by the church and prophets are true. When I was ten years old, I prayed and asked Heavenly Father if the church was true and if the experiences recounted by Joseph Smith really happened. God answered my prayer by sending an incredible feeling of warmth, peace, and joy into my heart. He confirmed the truth of those things to me. Since that time, I have had numerous other confirmations of those truths. Most notably, I received many confirmations of my faith when I served as a missionary. During that time I would teach about the experience of the Prophet Joseph Smith seeing God the Father and His son Jesus Christ. When I would explain this experience and recite Joseph’s words, I always received an additional confirming witness in my heart.
2. I believe in God and Jesus Christ because God has provided answers to questions that I wasn’t even asking. On at least two different occasions, I have received distinct impressions from God about specific actions I was supposed to take. In neither instance had I been thinking or praying about that course of action. God decided that I needed to be pushed in a specific direction, and He let me know by sending specific thoughts and feelings into my mind and heart. These inspirations were so distinct and so profound that I could not deny them and they changed my life. I followed those impressions and my life has been immeasurably improved because of doing so.
3. I believe in God and Jesus Christ because I can see God’s guiding hand and positive influence in my life. When I look back on the events of my life, I can see how I have been guided and blessed. Over the past five years, my life has not gone according to my plans. It has gone in ways that are unexpected but much better. When I expected to get a new job, I didn’t get it. But that failure led to other opportunities. In so many ways, when I look back on the path my life has taken over I can see how the Lord has guided and influenced me to be where I am now. I could not have predicted the course my life was supposed to take, but looking back I can see that I am better off and happier because of God’s influence.
4. I believe in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and its teachings because when I follow the teachings, I am happier and my life is better. At one point in my life, a very loving church leader strongly but gently counseled me to repent. He believed I could be a better person, and by pushing me to change, I became the person he knew I could be. That call to repentance improved my life, my marriage, and my ability to serve God. My life is better and I am happier because I am following the principles of the Savior. I feel grateful and blessed to have inspired leaders in my local congregation and also the Prophet and the Apostles who guide the church and the world.
5. I believe because I choose faith over doubt. There are still aspects of the gospel and pieces of church history that I do not fully understand and which are hard to accept. However, I have made an active choice to believe and exercise faith in God and in His teachings present in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I decided that belief was better than doubt. That decision to believe has changed the way I approach a lot of issues. I remember thinking one day, “What if I’m wrong?” What if the church isn’t true, or God isn’t real?” I thought about that for a long time and I realized that the chance of being wrong did not matter. It did not matter to me because I am convinced that living the gospel is the best way to live. I think living a Christ-like life, and living in a way that supports eternal families is the best way to be happy, and for society to prosper. The gospel makes me happier every day than I would be without it.
6. I believe in Jesus Christ and The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints because of the beauty contained in the doctrines of the church. I will mention three doctrines that are supremely beautiful and inspiring to my soul. The first is the doctrine of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. The teaching that because of Christ’s love and sacrifice that I can be forgiven of my sins and return to live with God inspires me. It lifts my heart. The second is the doctrine of eternal families. Within the church we know that within the temples of God, families can be united forever, and not just during our lifetimes. Families are meant to last forever. Third, is the doctrine of baptism for the dead. Within the church we learn that God loves all of his children equally and he has provided a way for the living to work on behalf of those who did not have a chance to receive baptism during their lifetime. No one is forgotten, no one is left out. These doctrines are powerful and they touch my soul.