"It is an extraordinary privilege to have the Holy Spirit for our guide," said Elder Larry Y. Wilson, General Authority Seventy, during the Sunday morning session of general conference on April 1.
Sharing the story of Ensign Frank Blair, who served on a troop transport ship stationed in Japan during the Korean War, Elder Wilson told of how Blair's ability to listen to the Spirit saved him and his entire crew during a huge typhoon.
"Ensign Blair finished his watch and was getting into bed when the captain knocked on his door," Elder Wilson said. "He asked, 'Would you please pray for this ship.' Of course, Ensign Blair agreed to do so."
At that point, the young man could have just prayed for safety, but instead, he prayed to know if there was something he could do to help ensure the safety of the ship. Three times he prayed to know what to do and then followed the promptings of the Spirit.
"The captain thanked the young LDS officer and said he believed that following Ensign Blair's spiritual impressions had saved the crew and the ship," Elder Wilson said. "Now this story is quite dramatic. While we may be unlikely to face such dire circumstances, this story contains important guidelines about how we can receive the Spirit's guidance more frequently."
Elder Wilson shared three guidelines for individuals to receive the guidance of the Spirit.
1. When it comes to revelation, "we must properly tune our receiver to heaven's frequency."
"Had [Ensign Blair] not been obedient, he would not have had the spiritual confidence necessary to pray as he did for the safety of his ship and to receive such specific guidance," he said. "We must each be making the effort to align our lives with God's commandments in order to be directed by Him."
2. Be part of the solution.Comment on this story
Instead of just listing problems in prayer and asking the Lord to solve them, Elder Wilson encouraged listeners to — like Ensign Blair — seek more proactive ways of receiving the Lord's help, and then to commit to act according to the Spirit's guidance.
3. Follow the pattern of listening to the Holy Ghost.
"The arrival of a typhoon is no time to dust off the gift of the Holy Ghost and figure out how to use it. This young man was clearly following a pattern he had used many times before, including as a full-time missionary.
"We need the Holy Spirit as our guide in calm waters, so His voice will be unmistakable to us in the fiercest storm."