“Before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee”

by Krystyna Hales

I know who I am. I know God’s plan. 

In Jeremiah 1:5, the Lord explains to Jeremiah, “Before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.” Wilford Woodruff wrote in his journal on September 1, 1875, regarding the death of President George Albert Smith, a modern day prophet (then First Counselor in the First Presidency), and recorded what a great servant of the Lord President Smith had been in his life. Wilford said, "No man has Ever lived in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints and Died who has left a cleaner or brighter record for both time and Eternity than the Apostle G. A. Smith. No man has been more diligent, virtuous, honest, or valiant in the Testimony of Jesus Christ than He in the last dispensation and fulness of times. He was an Apostle fore ordained from before the foundation of the world to come forth in the last dispensation & fulness of times and assist in laying the foundation of the Church and kingdom of God in the last days and assist in building it up, and He has well & faithfully fulfilled his mission.”

Like President Smith, Wilford Woodruff was also foreordained for his life's mission—as are we. Wilford Woodruff was stalwart in his testimony of the Restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ and lived that testimony unwaveringly. He was valiant in his faith and relentless in following the Spirit.

The Gospel Topics resource states that "the doctrine of foreordination applies to all members of the Church, not just to the Savior and His prophets." The Lord knows each of us, loves each of us, and has a plan for each of us that He has prepared us for. We too can follow Wilford Woodruff's example in living our testimonies of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Krystyna graduated with a BS in anthropology with an emphasis in archaeology at Brigham Young University and participated in excavations in Jordan, Italy, and Native American sites in Utah. She served in the Maryland Baltimore Mission and later earned an executive masters in crisis & emergency management at University of Nevada, Las Vegas. For the past eight years she has managed people, projects, products, and processes and is excited to be utilizing her skills to support the mission of the Wilford Woodruff Papers Foundation.

Some original text has been edited for clarity and readability.

[1] Wilford Woodruff’s Journal, September 1, 1875, p. 2, Wilford Woodruff Papers, wilfordwoodruffpapers.org/journal/1875-09-01.

[2] Gospel Topics, “Foreordination,” The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, topics.ChurchofJesusChrist.org.