You can be confident and powerful as a witness of God, Sharon G. Larsen told young women of the Church March 25.

Speaking during the General Young Women Meeting, Sister Larsen, second counselor in the Young Women general presidency, admonished: "Live the standards of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Do not compromise. You must not compromise."Standing as a witness of God, Sister Larsen explained, "means we will not bow down or give in or be persuaded to do anything contrary to God's will. It means we will risk speaking up when our knees are shaking. It means we will listen and follow the still, small voice of the Holy Ghost.

"We can be a witness for God when we know Him, when we trust Him and when we feel secure in His loving care. There are no new or easy ways that we earn a relationship. It is the tried-and-true-always-works ways: scripture study, prayer and living those things you learn through your study and prayers. As you read the scriptures, you become acquainted with what your Father in Heaven wants for His children and how He continually reaches out to sustain and bless and forgive us."

Continuing, Sister Larsen said: "When you pray for personal guidance, your Father in Heaven knows what is in your heart, but He wants you to tell Him of your hopes and dreams and needs. Only when you speak with certainty that, indeed, you do want to be a witness will you know what you are going to do about it."

Sister Larsen related the accounts of several young women who have written to the general presidency about how they or others they know are standing as witnesses, including the experience of Michelle, who read the scriptures to a hospitalized friend and encouraged her ill friend's testimony.

"Standing as a witness means you know with certainty that you want to do what is right and let the consequence follow. To stand means you remain firm and immoveable even when (or especially when) you are the smallest or the youngest or the last one standing. You may be the means for holding up others. You have to be strong!

"In your mind, how will you be a witness? What is your plan? Witnessing is showing by our behavior what we believe, and that can start in our own families. How cheerfully do we contribute to our family? How hard do we work to be successful in our studies? How faithfully do we respond to callings to serve? How willing are we to forgive someone who has hurt us?

"You don't have the power to make rainbows or waterfalls, sunsets or roses, but you do have the power to bless people by your words and smiles and your sincere interest in them," Sister Larsen added. "Think of it -- you carry within you the power to make the world better for someone each day! That is standing as a witness of God."

She concluded by testifying: "I know with all my being that there is no one in all time or eternity to take your place in the heart of your Father in Heaven. You can trust Him and depend on Him."