I am thankful for the prophets, seers, and revelators who lead us today. I am grateful for their inspired teaching, counsel, and warnings.
Over the years, I have had the privilege of meeting each of them, and I have had some very personal experiences with a number of them. Every time I have had the opportunity to be with one of them I have come away with the distinct impression that they see, know, and understand more than I see, know, and understand—it’s as though they are seeing around corners. Some may think that they are ordinary men with an extraordinary calling, but I find each of them to be extraordinary in every way. Most importantly they do have a holy calling. The scripture says, "Surely the Lord God will do nothing, but he revealeth his secret unto his servants the prophets" (Amos 3:7). In a revelation to Joseph Smith, the Lord also said:
"What I the Lord have spoken, I have spoken, and I excuse not myself; and though the heavens and the earth pass away, my word shall not pass away, but shall all be fulfilled, whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is the same." (D and Covenants 1:38, emphasis added)
This is their calling to reveal God’s will to His children and to speak for Him. The Spirit has testified to me that they are the Lord's anointed. I don't worship them for I reserve that for my Heavenly Father and His son Jesus Christ, but I do respect their calling and sustain them in it.
The Lord told the Nephites gathered at the temple in Bountiful:
"Blessed are ye if ye shall give heed unto the words of these twelve whom I have chosen from among you to minister unto you, and to be your servants "(3 Nephi 12:1, emphasis added).
I have found that following the counsel of those with apostolic authority—the prophets, seers, and revelators—blesses my life. With so many voices advocating for this or that cause, I am grateful that I can look to them for direction. By following them, I know I will find safety in troubled and confusing times.
The greatest danger is in not following their direction and counsel. Samuel, the Lamanite, warned the rebellious Nephites of the folly in not following the prophets of their day. He said,
"Yea, wo unto this people, because of this time which has arrived, that ye do cast out the prophets, and do mock them, and cast stones at them, and do slay them, and do all manner of iniquity unto them, even as they did of old time. And now when ye talk, ye say: If our days had been in the days of our fathers of old, we would not have slain the prophets; we would not have stoned them, and cast them out. Behold ye are worse than they; for as the Lord liveth, if a prophet come among you and declareth unto you the word of the Lord, which testifieth of your sins and iniquities, ye are angry with him, and cast him out and seek all manner of ways to destroy him; yea, you will say that he is a false prophet, and that he is a sinner, and of the devil, because he testifieth that your deeds are evil. But behold, if a man shall come among you and shall say: Do this, and there is no iniquity; do that and ye shall not suffer; yea, he will say: Walk after the pride of your own hearts; yea, walk after the pride of your eyes, and do whatsoever your heart desireth--and if a man shall come among you and say this, ye will receive him, and say that he is a prophet. Yea, ye will lift him up, and ye will give unto him of your substance; ye will give unto him of your gold, and of your silver, and ye will clothe him with costly apparel; and because he speaketh flattering words unto you, and he saith that all is well, then ye will not find fault with him. O ye wicked and ye perverse generation; ye hardened and ye stiffnecked people, how long will ye suppose that the Lord will suffer you? Yea, how long will ye suffer yourselves to be led by foolish and blind guides? Yea, how long will ye choose darkness rather than light? (Helaman 13:24-29, emphasis added)
Likening this scripture to me, I ask, "How could I cast out the prophets, mock them, cast stones at them, and even slay them?" I could cast them out, mock them, cast stones at them, or symbolically murder them if I choose not to follow them, pridefully disagree with them, or think I know more than they do. I could foolishly choose to follow “blind guides” and those who espouse comfortable or politically correct paths rather than doctrinally sound ways.
The choice for me then is to choose whom I am going to follow. If I choose to follow the prophets, seers, and revelators, I know that I will hear the voice of the Lord and find safety in troubled and confusing times. I know that the Lord will bless my life and that I will be on the path that will lead me safely back into the presence of Heavenly Father.