“Therefore, go ye unto your homes, and ponder upon the things which I have said, and ask of the Father, in my name, that ye may understand, and prepare your minds for the morrow, and I come unto you again.” (3 Nephi 17:3)
The things we read or study in the scriptures aren’t going to just sink into our souls by accident. We must ponder on these treasures and pray about them, seeking for the blessing of personal revelation to teach us that we will fully understand what it is that our Heavenly Father wants for us.
Years ago, I knew a man who had given up every comfort in his life so he could devote his time to reading the bible. He sold his house and left his family and friends. He packed everything he felt he needed to survive his chosen lifestyle into a van and moved into a campground by a river. He spent every spare moment of his life reading the bible. He, however, never uttered a single word in prayer. He knew the bible both the old and new testament like no one else I have ever met. However, it was a knowledge devoid of spirituality or even understanding. I often asked him if he had found what he was looking for. Invariably, his answer would be, “not yet”.
I have wondered about him from time to time since then. I have also considered how much more there is to the words found in holy scripture or those delivered to us by modern servants of God than what we may gain through our own efforts and power. Even in a classroom setting, we will never find such great promise if we but rely only on the power and knowledge of man. The fullness of the gospel can only be obtained through the power of God. Only by seeking after it will we “be visited with fire and with the Holy Ghost, and shall receive a remission of [our] sins.” (3 Nephi 12:2)
I do not want to be like this man who lived in a van down by the river.