“Missionary Work,” True to the Faith (2004), 104–6
“Missionary Work,” True to the Faith, 104–6
When we experience the blessings of gospel living, we naturally want to share those blessings with others. The Lord spoke of the joy that comes into our lives when we share His gospel:
“If it so be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this people, and bring, save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father!
“And now, if your joy will be great with one soul that you have brought unto me into the kingdom of my Father, how great will be your joy if you should bring many souls unto me!” (D&C 18:15–16).
The Lord has declared that missionary work is the responsibility of all Latter-day Saints (see D&C 88:81). As a member of the Lord’s Church, you can, by the goodness of your life and the strength of your testimony, help prepare your family members, friends, and other acquaintances to meet with the full-time missionaries.
The most powerful missionary message you can send is your own example of living a happy Latter-day Saint life. Remember that people do not join the Church only because of gospel principles they learn. They join because they feel something that begins to satisfy their spiritual needs. If you are sincere in your friendship with them, they will be able to feel the spirit of your testimony and happiness.
In addition to setting a good example, you can “be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you” (1 Peter 3:15). You can pray for opportunities to tell others about the restored gospel. Then you can be alert, because many people yearn for the truth.
After His Resurrection, the Lord commanded His disciples to “go … and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost” (Matthew 28:19). In fulfillment of this command, able young men in the Church have a duty to prepare spiritually, physically, and emotionally to serve as full-time missionaries. Single women and mature couples also have the opportunity to serve full-time missions. If you desire to serve a full-time mission, speak with your bishop or branch president.
Missionary work includes helping and supporting those who join the Church. As you ponder this responsibility, remember that new members may face trials when they join the Church. Their new commitments often require them to set aside old habits and leave old friends and associations. In addition, the Church introduces a way of life that may seem different and demanding.
Each new member of the Church needs three things: a friend, a responsibility, and nurturing with “the good word of God” (Moroni 6:4). You can be part of the effort to provide this help. You can always be a friend. Even if you are not in a position to extend formal Church callings or responsibilities, you can work beside new members in acts of service. And you can seek opportunities to share the word of God with new members.