“I Finally Took the Challenge,” Liahona, Sept. 2009, 46
“How are you coming on reading the Book of Mormon?” the bishop asked our family during tithing settlement in 2005.
We had just finished talking about my many responsibilities at church and at home with two toddler boys. I stammered something about how hard it was to read a whole chapter every day, but in my heart I knew I was making excuses. The simple fact was that though I had done many good things the past few months, I had not attempted to read the Book of Mormon from cover to cover as President Gordon B. Hinckley had challenged.1
As the new year began, the Spirit pricked my soul. I felt like the leper Naaman, who at first refused to undertake the simple task of washing himself in the waters of Jordan, as requested by the prophet Elisha (see 2 Kings 5:1–14). Reading the Book of Mormon is also a simple task.
The next fast Sunday, several brothers and sisters bore testimony of how the prophet’s promises were realized in their lives. I knew I had missed out on those blessings because I had not listened to his voice. I resolved to read the Book of Mormon from cover to cover in 2006—and the next year and the next year—so that, like President Hinckley, I could gain a love for it.
As the year drew to a close, I reflected on my goal, knowing that I would finish the book by the end of the year. I realized that I had gained insights that I could not have gained from any other source. I had grown closer to my Heavenly Father and my Savior. I had found more opportunities to share the gospel throughout the year because I had read the Book of Mormon and could testify of its truthfulness.
I wish I had taken President Hinckley’s challenge in 2005. Just like Naaman, who finally washed himself in the waters of Jordan, I could have enjoyed the blessings of the Book of Mormon much sooner than I did.
I am grateful that I have learned the importance of taking even simple challenges from the prophet. I look forward to a new year full of blessings from reading the Book of Mormon—again.