Sunday, July 13, 2008

Preach My Gospel: Faith, Family, Facts and Fruits

The Ensign, November 2007

I find it simple to slip my thoughts and feelings into the vast stream of the Internet and allow the current to carry them where it may, particularly regarding my testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. However, chatting person-t0-person often leaves me tongue-tied, struggling as I do with a tendency to stammer while I fish for the thoughts in my head. Painfully aware of this weakness, I listened with great interest when Elder M. Russell Ballard delivered this address in the October, 2007, semi-annual conference of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

In it, he suggests that we use a list of 'talking points', if you will, as a personal resource as we share with our interested friends a little about the Church---the operative word being 'little', as Elder Ballard observes.
  • Facts: share a few facts regarding the history of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Joseph Smith, what people mean by 'Mormons', and whom we consider 'saints'.
  • Faith: emphasize Jesus Christ is the foundation of our belief, and the great commonality we share with all Christians who believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the savior of all mankind.
  • Family: share our focus on the family, our programs to strengthen and enrich family life, and that our highest ordinances and covenants are family-related.
  • Fruits: share some of the programs of the Church and the consequent results, including humanitarian relief, personal and community service, and improvement in quality of life.
I in no way can paraphrase to any effect what Elder Ballard shares in this sermon. However, as we consider the three-fold mission of the Church, to preach the gospel, perfect the saints, and redeem the dead, and our role in that mandate, this article is an excellent source of guidance and inspiration.

Things to Know:
Path:>Gospel Library>Ensign>2007>November>Faith, Family, and Fruits
Author: Elder M. Russell Ballard of the Council of the Twelve

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