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Robert D. Hales
Works at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
Attended University of Utah
Lives in Salt Lake City, UT
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Robert D. Hales

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I express gratitude that “in my Gethsemane” and yours, we are not alone. He that watches over us “shall neither slumber nor sleep.” His angels here and beyond the veil are “round about [us], to bear [us] up.”

I bear my special witness that our Savior’s promise is true, for He says, “They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”

May we wait upon Him by pressing forward in faith, that we may say in our prayers, “Thy will be done,” and return to Him with honor.
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Robert D. Hales

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Sometimes the adversary tempts us with false ideas that we may confuse with the Holy Ghost.

I testify that faithfulness in obeying the commandments and keeping our covenants will protect us from being deceived. Through the Holy Ghost, we will be able to discern those false prophets who teach for doctrine the commandments of men.
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Robert D. Hales

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The Holy Ghost is not given to control us. Some of us unwisely seek the Holy Ghost’s direction on every minor decision in our lives. This trivializes His sacred role.

The Holy Ghost honors the principle of agency. He speaks to our minds and our hearts gently about many matters of consequence.

Each of us may feel the influence of the Holy Ghost differently. His promptings will be felt in different degrees of intensity according to our individual needs and circumstances.
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Robert D. Hales

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Early in our marriage I suggested that we pay our tithing from out of our year-end bonus, which came after the first of the year. I was thinking about tithing like life insurance or fire insurance—something you pay to stay out of trouble. 

But my sweet wife and companion taught me: “No,” she said, “we will pay tithing as we go, because we love the Lord and want to build His kingdom.”

Where the kingdom is concerned, the willingness of our hearts is everything. We keep the commandments because we love Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ. As we express that love, it is very simple. He said, “If ye love me, keep my commandments.” As we do, we lay the foundation of a great work, and out of these small things proceeds that which is great.
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The Lord will always keep His promise: “I will lead you along.” The only question is, will we let ourselves be led? Will we hear His voice and the voice of His servants?

I testify that if you are there for the Lord, He will be there for you. If you love Him and keep His commandments, you will have His Spirit to be with you and guide you. “Put your trust in that Spirit which leadeth to do good. … By this shall you know, all things … pertaining unto things of righteousness" (D&C 11:12, 14).
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Robert D. Hales

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I challenge each of us to follow our spiritual desires and come to ourselves. Let’s have a talk with ourselves in the mirror and ask, “Where do I stand on living my covenants?” We are on the right path when we can say, “I worthily partake of the sacrament each week, I am worthy to hold a temple recommend and go to the temple, and I sacrifice to serve and bless others.”

I share my special witness that God so loves each one of us “that he gave his only begotten Son” to atone for our sins. He knows us and waits for us, even when we are a great way off. As we act on our desires and come to ourselves, we will be “encircled about eternally in the arms of his love” and welcomed home.
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The Holy Ghost is central to the Restoration. Regarding his boyhood reading of James 1:5, the Prophet Joseph recounted, “Never did any passage of scripture come with more power to the heart of man than this did at this time to mine.”

The power described by Joseph Smith was the influence of the Holy Ghost. As a result, Joseph went into a grove of trees near his home and knelt down to ask of God. The First Vision that followed was truly momentous and magnificent. But the path to that in-person visitation of the Father and the Son began with a prompting from the Holy Ghost to pray.

The revealed truths of the restored gospel came through the pattern of seeking in prayer and then receiving and following the promptings of the Holy Ghost. Consider these examples: translating the Book of Mormon; the restoration of the priesthood and its ordinances, beginning with baptism; and the organization of the Church—to name a few.

I testify that today, revelation from the Lord to the First Presidency and the Twelve comes according to this same sacred pattern. This is the same sacred pattern that allows personal revelation.
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Robert D. Hales

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I know with surety that our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ live. The Atonement is real. God the Father and Jesus Christ are distinct, separate, immortal beings. They know us as individuals, and They hear and answer our sincere prayers. 
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In my young adult years, I sought counsel from my parents and from faithful, trusted advisers. One was a priesthood leader; another was a teacher who believed in me. Both said to me, “If you want my counsel, be prepared to take it.” I understood what that meant. 

Prayerfully select mentors who have your spiritual well-being at heart. Be careful about taking advice from your peers. If you want more than you now have, reach up, not across!

Remember, no one can reach upward on your behalf. Only your faith and prayers will cause you to lift yourself and have the mighty change of heart. Only your resolve to be obedient can change your life. 

Because of the Savior’s atoning sacrifice for you, the power is in you. You have your agency, you have strong testimonies if you are obedient, and you can follow the Spirit that guides you.
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If you don’t have abundant resources, don’t worry. A wonderful Church member recently told me, “I didn’t raise my children on money; I raised them on faith.” There is a great truth to that. 

Begin exercising your faith in every area of your life. If you don’t, you will suffer what I would call “faith atrophy.” The very strength needed to exercise your faith will be diminished. So exercise your faith every day, and you will “wax stronger and stronger … and firmer and firmer in the faith of Christ.”
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When I was a young adult, my stake president was an investment banker on Wall Street. He taught me, “You are rich if you can live happily within your means.” 

How can you do it? Pay your tithing and then save! When you earn more, save more. Don’t compete with others to have expensive toys. Don’t buy what you can’t afford.

Many young adults in the world are going into debt to get an education, only to find the cost of school is greater than they can repay. Seek out scholarships and grants. Obtain part-time employment, if possible, to help pay your own way. This will require some sacrifice, but it will help you succeed.
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Robert D. Hales

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I bear my witness that our travel through this life can bring us great happiness. 

Ultimately, that happiness is possible because of our Savior and His atoning sacrifice. He is our greatest, truest friend. He is the one who has walked the path of mortal life before us. And because He suffered all things for us, He is the Holy One who can understand us, succor us, comfort us, heal us, and strengthen us. 

I testify that He lives, and because He lives we can have the joy of returning with honor back into His presence. May that joy be ours today as we continue in our glorious journey home. 
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Story
Tagline
Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
Introduction

Elder Robert D. Hales was sustained as a member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints on April 2, 1994.

Elder Hales received his call as a General Authority on April 4, 1975. He served as an Assistant to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles and later as a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy. He was Presiding Bishop of the Church from April 1985 until called to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles.

He was a regional representative for five years prior to his call as a General Authority. He earlier served as a branch president, bishop, high councilor, and stake president’s counselor. He was president of the England London Mission in the late 1970s and has served as first counselor in the Sunday School general presidency.

Prior to his call to full-time Church service, Elder Hales had a distinguished business career, serving in executive positions with three major national companies.

Elder Hales was born in New York City on August 24, 1932. He is a graduate of the University of Utah and holds a master of business administration degree from Harvard. He served in the U.S. Air Force as a jet fighter pilot.

He married Mary Crandall, and they have two sons.

Education
  • University of Utah
  • Harvard University
    MBA
Basic Information
Gender
Male
Birthday
August 24, 1932
Work
Employment
  • The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
    Quorum of the Twelve Apostles, 1994 - present
Places
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Currently
Salt Lake City, UT