ONE || Do you feel like you lack wisdom these days? Between the political climate, the coronavirus pandemic, and the recent murders of black children of God like Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd, I sometimes feel as though I don't know where to turn or what to do. The world is shaking and shifting from to day to day with new challenges, and the internet is like a megaphone shouting conflicting information without a break. Even within the Church, we have many brothers and sisters who have been hurt by the actions of others or by historical events and actions that seem contrary to the truth that we are all beloved children of God. How do we overcome this? Elder Christofferson opens his talk by saying, "the revelations of the First Vision were not for Joseph Smith alone but are offered as light and truth for any who 'lack wisdom.' [...] The Restoration belongs to the world, and its message is especially urgent today." When we focus on the core doctrines of the Restored Church of Jesus Christ, we can find peace and clarity ringing through the chaos.
TWO || Do we share the message of the Restoration because we are trying to beef up our heavenly resume, or are we sharing out of love and desire to bless the lives of those around us? For me, sometimes that line can get hazy. I'm a rule follower and I want to do the things I'm "supposed" to do, the things we've been commanded to do, because I feel good about myself when I'm doing the right things. But to be an effective missionary and a true disciple, I need to act out of love for my Savior and those around me. Joy D. Jones said in her October 2018 talk, "For Him," "As we become less concerned about our service magnifying us, we realize instead that the focus of our service will be on putting God first." And as the focus of our service becomes putting God first, by loving Him and our fellow men and women, we will be better able to share the message of the Restoration.
THREE || Jesus called out hypocrites throughout his mortal ministry, pointing out the rigidity of the Pharisees' adherence to the Mosaic Law but their lack of compassion and mercy to the people around them. In a similar manner, as we share the gospel, our authenticity is essential. Of course we will never be perfect at living the truths we hold up and share, but as we pray and repent each day, it will be impossible to hide our love for the gospel. Last week in family home evening, my husband and I discussed what having God's image in our countenance meant with our children, ages 2-7. After we explained, we asked them if they could think of any people who had His image in their countenance, and it was an easy exercise. We all can identify those people around us who glow with a love for the Lord and a desire to serve and share the goodness in their lives. If we can work to become those people with Christ's image shining in our eyes, when we share the truths we love others will want to listen.
"[The Book of Mormon] is palpable evidence of Joseph Smith's prophetic calling and convincing evidence of the divinity and Resurrection of Jesus Christ. Its exposition of our Heavenly Father's plan of redemption is unequaled. When you share the Book of Mormon, you share the Restoration."
D. TODD CHRISTOFFERSON
"Perhaps it goes without saying that despite genuine love and sincerity, many, if not most, of our invitations to share the message of the Restoration will be declined. But remember this: everyone is worthy of such an invitation--"all are alike unto God;" the Lord is pleased with every effort we make, no matter the outcome; a declined invitation is no reason for our association to end; and a lack of interest today may well turn to interest tomorrow. Regardless, our love remains constant."
D. TODD CHRISTOFFERSON
THIS WEEK'S CHALLENGE
Elder Christofferson's third essential piece of sharing the Book of Mormon is using the Book of Mormon as an "instrument of conversion." After reading this talk, pray and ponder how you can share the Book of Mormon this week. Can you write your testimony in a copy and bring it to a friend with a plate of cookies? Can you share a favorite verse and your testimony on social media, or in a letter to a loved one? Let the Spirit guide you.