“Have Courage to Share the Gospel,” New Era, Mar. 2015, 20–21
It takes courage to share the gospel with a stranger. Just ask a new full-time missionary. Sometimes it takes even more courage to ask your friends if they’d like to know about the Church, the Book of Mormon, or our beliefs.
You wonder: What if they’re not interested? What if they’re offended? What if they make fun of me? What if they say they hate me and never want to see me again?
Don’t worry. That’s really not likely to happen. Your friends will probably just say, “No, thanks.” But don’t be surprised if some respond, “Sure, tell me more”—especially if you’re living the gospel.
Elder M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles has said: “We are members of the restored Church of Jesus Christ, empowered and sent forth by the Lord Himself to find, nourish, and bring safely into His Church those who are seeking to know the truth.”
From that perspective, sharing the gospel is “simple and clear.” But, Elder Ballard admitted, “missionary work can be challenging and sometimes frightening.”
How can we overcome that fear? Elder Ballard suggests three ways below:
First, pray by yourself and with your family that the Lord will help you find ways to share the gospel. (See the sidebar for what a young woman in Brazil did.) Also, ask the Lord to lead you to those who are ready.
Second, be an example. In a world of decaying standards, your friends will notice your light. Your personal worthiness will give you courage and spiritual power.
Third, exercise faith and trust in the Lord and always show love for others.
“Some members say, ‘I’m afraid to share the gospel because I might offend someone,’” Elder Ballard said. “Experience has shown that people are not offended when the sharing is motivated by the spirit of love and concern. How could anyone be offended when we say something like this: ‘I love the way my church helps me’ and then add whatever the Spirit directs”?1
The duty to share the gospel belongs to all members of the Church—including you. So be brave and let the Lord bless your efforts.