I ran across this block of verses recently and it really touched me:
7 But ye are commanded in all things to ask of God, who giveth liberally; and that which the Spirit testifies unto you even so I would that ye should do in all holiness of heart, walking uprightly before me, considering the end of your salvation, doing all things with prayer and thanksgiving, that ye may not be seduced by evil spirits, or doctrines of devils, or the commandments of men; for some are of men, and others of devils.
8 Wherefore, beware lest ye are deceived; and that ye may not be deceived seek ye earnestly the best gifts, always remembering for what they are given;
9 For verily I say unto you, they are given for the benefit of those who love me and keep all my commandments, and him that seeketh so to do; that all may be benefited that seek or that ask of me, that ask and not for a sign that they may consume it upon their lusts. (D&C 46:7-9)
The major payload for me here was that the Lord wanted me to seek the best spiritual gifts. And if you’re wondering what the best spiritual gifts are, they are always the ones that you and I really need right now.
We’re to walk uprightly and consider the end of our salvation, and spiritual gifts can help us overcome the bumps in the road, the obstacles, the storms, the whirlpools, and so on.
I’d venture to suggest that everyone who is reading right now has some sort of difficulty they are facing. Can you think of what spiritual gift you need to get through that? Once you know what you need, pray for it.
One of the purposes of spiritual gifts is that they are one of the many means Heavenly Father uses to save us and to enable us to be His instruments to save others. They are not to flatter our egos or an excuse to think we are better than others. They are meant to save us, and if we need saving, then we certainly have nothing to boast about.
The rest of section 46 talks about various spiritual gifts: testimony, belief, knowing the differences of administration, suiting mercies to the conditions of men, knowing the diversities of operations, wisdom, knowledge, faith to be healed, faith to heal, working miracles, prophecy, discerning of spirits, tongues and interpretation…
But I’m realizing there are so many more spiritual gifts. If you need patience, you can pray for that. If you need endurance and stamina, pray for that. If you need an open mind, or a loving heart, or nurturing skills, or a calm demeanor, or cheer, or industriousness and love of work, or creativity..
Whatever you need, pray for it.