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Gramps,

I haven’t prayed for months. I’m kind of scared to. I know in my heart that I want to pray but I’m scared. How can I build my confidence up to pray again?

How can God love us and really know us? He has a zillion other kids in the world. and after all that I’ve done wrong how can he not be ashamed of me?

Martin

Dear Martin,

Your question has been a concern of many people. But it stems from a concept of God as some sort of superman with human limitations. We cannot begin to imagine the limitless power of God. He is both eternal in duration and infinite in capacity. The scriptures reveal to us something of His limitless capacity-

Behold, I am God; Man of Holiness is my name; Man of Counsel is my name; and Endless and Eternal is my name, also. Wherefore, I can stretch forth mine hands and hold all the creations which I have made; and mine eye can pierce them also.(Genesis 7:45; Moses 7:35-36)

O how great the holiness of our God! For he knoweth all things, and there is not anything save he knows it. (2 Nephi 9:20)

The angels do not reside on a planet like this earth; But they reside in the presence of God, on a globe like a sea of glass and fire, where all things for their glory are manifest, past, present, and future, and are continually before the Lord. (D&C 130:6-7)

And Ammon said: Yea, and he looketh down upon all the children of men; and he knows all the thoughts and intents of the heart; for by his hand were they all created from the beginning.(Alma 18:32)

The list goes on- God is the creator of the universe and of all that it contains, and there is not anything save he knows it. Further, he is the literal Father of all the human family, and as our Father, He loves us, is interested in our welfare and is anxious for us to communicate with Him. He has frequently commanded us to pray always-(Luke 21:36; 2 Thess 1:11; 2 Ne. 32:9; 3 Ne. 18:15,18; D&C 10:5; 19:38; 20:33; 31:12; 61:39; 88:126; 9:24; 93:49) And then he has given us these comforting words,

Look unto me in every thought; doubt not, fear not. (D&C 6:36)

He knows that we fall far short of living a perfect life. All men commit sin, but the Savior was sent by the Father to pay the price demanded by the law of justice for all the sins that everyone who has ever lived or who ever will live has committed. So the Lord, knowing beforehand all the bad things that you would ever do, loves you so much that He assumed the responsibility to be punished in your place for all the sins that you ever have or ever will commit. So you should not be ashamed to go to your Father in Heaven in prayer, you should be ashamed not to. Consider Him as your loving Father, interested in and concerned for everything you do. Talk to Him about your day, ask His advice and counsel, thank Him for all the good things that happen to you, for He is responsible for them all. Look unto [him] in every thought; doubt not, fear not.

-Gramps

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