“An Example of the Believers,” New Era, Jan. 2009, 8–10
Can the influence of one righteous young man or young woman make a difference in the world? The answer is yes!
The Savior Jesus Christ trusts you with His name, which you received at baptism. He trusts you to represent the Church and your family by gratefully living a good life. He asks you to be “an example of the believers,” someone who will draw others to Him, work miracles, and help Him build the kingdom of God on earth.
The 2009 Mutual theme is found in 1 Timothy 4:12, where the Apostle Paul gives advice to his young friend Timothy. What Paul taught Timothy also applies to you today because you, like Timothy, are a believer! “You are choice spirits who have come forth in this day” when the gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored. You are part of a generation of destiny with “responsibilities of building the kingdom of God.”1 You can influence the entire world through the power of your faith and your righteous example. Paul knew that of Timothy, and we know that of you!
President Thomas S. Monson gave excellent counsel on how we can be an “example of the believers.” He said: “Make every decision you contemplate pass this test: What does it do to me? What does it do for me? And let your code of conduct emphasize not, ‘What will others think?’ but rather, ‘What will I think of myself?’ Be influenced by that still, small voice. Remember that one with authority placed his hands on your head at the time of your confirmation and said, ‘Receive the Holy Ghost.’ Open your hearts, even your very souls, to the sound of that special voice which testifies of truth.”2
Believers have a growing personal testimony of Jesus Christ, they recognize the great blessing of personal testimony, and they desire to share their knowledge with others. You can share your testimony by your words and your example.
President Monson also taught: “When firmly planted, your testimony … will influence all that you do throughout your life. It will help to determine how you spend your time and with whom you choose to associate. It will affect the way you treat your family, how you interact with others. It will bring love, peace, and joy into your life.”3
You live in a world that is competing for your time and attention. You face many pressures and are bombarded with many voices. Sometimes you can become confused about what to do and what is right. Each week you have the opportunity to partake of the sacrament and renew your covenant to “always remember [the Savior] and keep his commandments” (D&C 20:77). When you do this, you show Heavenly Father your willingness to take upon yourself His Son’s holy name. Your words and actions show others that you really are keeping your covenants. As you renew and keep your covenants, the Holy Ghost will guide you and “tell you all things what ye should do” (2 Nephi 32:3).
The standards in For the Strength of Youth will also strengthen you and help you stand firm as an example. As you live these standards, you will have the guidance and the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost. Your thoughts and actions will be different from the world’s, and your example will influence others. “You will feel good about yourself and will be a positive influence in the lives of others.”4 You will be happy, and your friends and family will be drawn to you by the light and happiness you radiate.
So we ask you, “Can one young man or young woman striving to live the gospel and be a worthy example of the believers make a difference in the world?” We know with all our hearts that the answer is a resounding yes! We believe that as you are pure in your thoughts, conversation, and actions, you will make a difference. We believe in you!