“A Small and Simple Gift,” Ensign, December 2019
As the Christmas season approached several years ago, I was touched by a statement I read from the First Presidency:
“Each act of kindness to anyone becomes a kindness to the Savior because He loves all of Heavenly Father’s children. …
“… With all the kindnesses we give for Him, the greatest we can offer is to point those we love and serve toward Him, the only source of Eternal Life.”1
I felt a distinct impression that this invitation from the living prophets was just the thing we needed to help our family come closer to the Savior and make the Christmas season more memorable.
I contemplated how to accept this invitation and felt prompted to invite each member of my family (myself included) to record our testimonies in a copy of the Book of Mormon and give it to someone we felt it could bless. I talked about this with my wife, and she also felt that this would bless our family.
At our next home evening, we gathered our children together and talked about Christmas and the blessings the gospel of Jesus Christ had brought to our family. We then shared the impressions we had received. I almost expected negativity or complaining, but their response surprised me. “Yeah, Dad,” they said, “that’s a great idea!”
The following week, we sat at the kitchen table and listed names of individuals we felt could be blessed by the Book of Mormon. We prayed for each individual by name and asked the Lord to soften their hearts and prepare them to receive the message of the Book of Mormon. We each gave away our books and felt joy and the Savior’s gratitude for our small sacrifice. We had a wonderful Christmas!
Not long after Christmas, my wife said that she felt bad because she had simply written her testimony and given her Book of Mormon to her inactive brother.
“I feel like I took the easy road,” she said.
I reassured her that time would tell why she had been prompted to give the Book of Mormon to her brother.
Several years later, we received a call from my wife’s brother. After more than 15 years of inactivity, he said he was about to receive the Melchizedek Priesthood and be ordained an elder. He wanted us to be there for his ordination.
After his ordination, he shared his testimony and expressed his love for everyone. He then spoke directly to my wife. He said his spiritual reawakening began when he started reading the copy of the Book of Mormon she had given him. Last year, my wife and I were privileged to attend his sealing in the Manti Utah Temple.
The prophet Alma was right when he said, “By small and simple things are great things brought to pass” (Alma 37:6).
I’m grateful to Heavenly Father for the words of living prophets that sank deep into my heart and for the additional promptings and miracles that followed. I know that Heavenly Father is mindful of all of His children and will always help us when we work to do our part.