Following the Holy Ghost: back to the basics of a children’s hymn


The familiar words to the child’s hymn, “I am a Child of God,” reminded students at the March 4 devotional to follow the promptings of the Holy Ghost.

Jane Lassetter engaged students about following the promptings of the spirit. Photo by Samantha Williams.
Jane Lassetter, associate professor in the College of Nursing, speaks to BYU students about life lessons they can learn through impressions from the Holy Ghost. Photo by Samantha Williams.

Jane Lassetter, associate professor in the College of Nursing and devotional speaker, shared her realization the words of a well-known children’s hymn were more than a child asking help from parents, but a prayerful plea to the Lord to “lead, guide, and walk beside through the guidance of the Holy Ghost.”

Lassetter said each person has their own unique way of feeling promptings from the Holy Ghost. According to Lassetter, it is sometimes difficult to distinguish the difference between deep emotional desires and spiritual promptings. For her, promptings are sudden thoughts or feelings.

“These sudden impressions are often things I’ve never thought of before, producing something of an ‘ah-ha’ moment,” Lassetter said.

Lassetter told a story about Patrick Clarke, her late brother-in-law, who had an experience with then Elder Spencer W. Kimball during his mission. On a drive to a conference in a southern branch of the mission, Elder Kimball told Clarke to pull the car over and stop. Quickly there after, they observed a semi-truck lose a tire and roll right where they would have driven had they not stopped.

Austin Ipson, a sophomore said her personal stories drew him in and helped him connect to her talk.

Elder Kimball had been listening to the still, small voice of the Spirit and encouraged to missionaries to do the same.

Lassetter continued to tell two more personal stories. She said one could have been life-threatening if her Father in Heaven had not been looking out for her, and the other was her Heavenly Father communicating to her earthy father through the Holy Ghost to help her.

These experiences symbolically showed Lassetter the importance of looking up when in need of help.

Michael Jones, a first-year MBA student, said what stuck out to him was the reminder of the nature of the Holy Ghost and how people need to listen, then act upon the promptings. Jones was able to pick up on Lassetter’s underlying message of finding ways to feel the Spirit.

“More than anything, we need to find the places or the spaces and the times that we need that create the environment in which we can pay attention and listen to the spirit,” Jones said.

Promptings often subtly appear and gently nudge individuals. Lassetter said people should “go and do” to avoid simply sitting and waiting in a state of paralysis for inspiration.

“As you provide the proper context, your spirit can understand the Holy Ghost as he leads, guides, and walks beside you on you mortal journey,” Lassetter said. “Live your life in such a way to invite his presence and help you sense his tender whispers.”

Next week’s devotional will be given by Larry M. Gibson of the Young Men General Presidency in the Marriott Center on March 11 at 11:05 a.m.


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