“A Simple Example,” New Era, July 2011, 45
I was taught a powerful lesson about the influence of setting an example. I strive to read my scriptures each night before I go to sleep. At times, I do well studying and feeling of the Spirit. Other times I barely read a few verses with sleepy eyes before setting my scriptures back on the nightstand and dropping off to sleep. Although my study is not perfect, I try to remain consistent in my goal to read every night.
One afternoon I had had a difficult day at school. I came home grumpy and discouraged. After I kicked off my shoes, my eyes fell to my nightstand. I scooped up my scriptures and settled into my bed, eager for some needed comfort. As I opened the pages, a paper fell to my lap. I discovered it was a letter.
The letter began with an apology for intruding. The writer explained that he had been playing with my brother when strangely, in the middle of the day, my alarm went off. After the blaring alarm did not automatically turn off, the writer had entered my room and switched it off. He had seen my scriptures sitting next to the alarm. He wrote that he was impressed by my example because my scriptures were out and ready to use while his lay forgotten somewhere in his closet. He was so moved that he began to read again and expressed his gratitude for my example.
On that discouraging day the kind note reminded me of the quiet influence I can be on others. I realized that if he had not thought to write this note I would never have known that I had been an influence in someone’s life. It taught me that each of us can be a powerful example in our simple daily actions.