“Comment,” Ensign, July 2002, 79
New Visiting Teaching Messages Inspired
When the new format for the visiting teaching messages came out, I was disappointed. I’d always looked forward to the personal story that went along with the messages, and when I discovered that the new format no longer included stories, but only scriptures and quotations from Church leaders, I wondered if I could teach the message. I told my teaching companion, “I’m not sure how to use these new messages. I always liked centering my lesson around the story.”
A sister in my ward must have been listening to the Spirit when she prepared a Relief Society lesson on how to share visiting teaching messages. She gave each of us a copy of a recent message and asked us to read each scripture and quotation and to discuss each one. As we did so, I realized that experiences from my own life were coming to mind. The other sisters also had personal stories to share that related to the message. The Spirit bore witness that this was how the lessons were intended to be taught—using the word of the Lord through scriptures, quotations from Church leaders, and personal experiences of our own.
I realized more clearly that we are to liken the scriptures unto ourselves (see 1 Ne. 19:23). I also realized that stories are not usually “one size fits all.” We each have different circumstances and backgrounds, and it makes a visit more meaningful if we can share with each other our own stories. I left Relief Society feeling grateful that Heavenly Father cares about each of our needs.
Thanks for Your Voices
Recently I made a goal to read every issue of the Ensign cover to cover. I want to thank the authors of the various articles published in this wonderful magazine. Reading it every morning has really helped me have the Spirit of the Lord with me while proselyting as a full-time missionary. I especially enjoy the Latter-day Saint Voices section of the magazine. Reading others’ conversion stories in this section has truly strengthened my testimony.
Elder Jacob Harmon
Georgia Atlanta Mission
We wanted to say thank you for the articles published in the Ensign. We especially enjoy the ones found in Latter-day Saint Voices. Many of the stories are shared with the entire family during home evenings or in gospel discussions. Keep the great articles coming.
Evelina and Sterling Day
West Valley, Utah