Instant Messages
    Footnotes

    “Instant Messages,” New Era, December 2017

    Instant Messages

    Making New Friends

    young people at school cafeteria

    Illustrations by Nasan Hardcastle

    When my parents told me that my family was going to move, I was very excited to make new friends. When we arrived in our new city, we went to church. I could feel the Spirit very strongly there, and I knew things would go well.

    Soon after, I began at my new school. I was one of the only Mormons in the school. When I walked in, I felt very out of place. I could tell I was different from the other students.

    Over the first week or so, I tried to make friends. But I felt so awkward! I tried sitting by different people each class and eating lunch at different tables every day. It didn’t seem like I was making any progress.

    I decided to strive to be a better example to my peers. I focused on Personal Progress and diligent scripture study. As I worked hard, I realized more fully that I am a daughter of God and that He loves me.

    As time went by and I continued to do these things, I noticed something: I had begun to make friends at school. It was almost like people were drawn to me. They commented on how I stood out. I realized that it was because I was letting my light shine. I had different mannerisms than my classmates. I dressed modestly, I used good language, and I was kind to others.

    We are all children of God. I’m so grateful that I let my light shine, even though I felt out of place. I know that we are never alone if we are on the Lord’s side!

    Rebekah C., Prince Edward Island, Canada

    Could I Share the Book of Mormon?

    During Mutual, we were given an assignment to become missionaries by getting a companion, sharing our testimonies with a nonmember, and giving our nonmember friend a copy of the Book of Mormon.

    After Mutual, I asked my mother for some advice. She promised me that if I prayed in faith and asked Heavenly Father, He would surely answer.

    It took me two weeks to find someone who would accept the Book of Mormon. At first, I was rejected again and again. I was so tired of getting hurt that I was about to give up.

    One night, I had a dream about a woman who was a close friend to my family. As I dreamed, I realized that she was the one for me and my companion to visit. When I woke up, I thanked the Lord for helping me.

    At the next Mutual, my companion and I wrote our testimonies on the front page of the book and made a fruit basket for the woman. We went to her house, knocked on her door, and waited. Even though I was scared that she might reject it, I told myself to have a little faith. She finally came outside with a happy face and accepted the Book of Mormon.

    Through this experience, I learned that when you have a little faith and you know that Heavenly Father is there, you can easily feel that the impossible is possible.

    Rapunzel L., American Samoa

    My Vacation from Piano Lessons

    young man relaxing

    One week, I decided to declare a holiday from practicing the piano. My piano teacher did not authorize this holiday and neither did my mom. For a full week I didn’t practice. I thought it was great because I had a good time relaxing and doing other things.

    The fun stopped on Thursday night, when my mom reminded me that my piano lesson was the next morning. I thought I had a solution: I woke up an hour earlier and started to practice. But I realized that my efforts were too little, too late. I had enjoyed the freedom to choose, but I hadn’t considered the consequences.

    The next morning when I met with my teacher, the consequences started to unfold. I had to admit that I hadn’t practiced, and my teacher told me I should make up all the practice time I missed, in addition to my regular practice time.

    I am grateful for the lessons I learned about agency, responsibility, and accountability. Every choice has a consequence, and I learned that I will make better decisions if I take time to consider the consequences first.

    Blake H., Utah, USA