Over the years, I have always wondered how members of the church that weren't actively on a mission, how they overcame their fear of talking to others about the gospel. How did they even start these conversations? I have always been afraid that I would come off the wrong way and ruin relationships because I am trying to share my knowledge of the gospel with them.
This past year, I have been praying more fervently to overcome this fear. I've been actively looking for ways to share the gospel with friends and family that are not of my faith. The Lord has been very patient with me in showing me the way. In the Book Of Mormon, the story of Alma the younger and the sons of the Mosiah always left me in awe. I was able to really feel their change of heart. If you're not familiar with the story, you can find it in more detail here. Alma the younger and the sons of Mosiah go around persecuting the saints and trying to destroy the church. Alma's father is the prophet and Mosiah is a righteous king over the Nephites. They both fast and pray for their sons. The Lord sends an angel to them and he says to them in Mosiah 27:13-14: 'Why persecutest thou the church of God? For the Lord hath said: This is my church, and I will establish it; and nothing shall overthrow it, save it is the transgression of my people. Behold, the Lord hath heard the prayers of his people, and also the prayers of his servant, Alma, who is thy father; for he has prayed with much faith concerning thee that thou mightest be brought to the knowledge of the truth; therefore, for this purpose have I come to convince thee of the power and authority of God, that the prayers of his servants might be answered according to their faith.' In verse 19 it says: 'And now the astonishment of Alma was so great that he became dumb, that he could not open his mouth; yea, and he became weak, even that he could not move his hands; therefore he was taken by those that were with him, and carried helpless, even until he was laid before his father.' His father gathered his priests together to fast and pray that his son would be able to speak. Their prayers were answered and one of the things that Alma says that really sticks out to me is this: 'Nevertheless, after wading through much tribulation, repenting nigh unto death, the Lord in mercy hath seen fit to snatch me out of an everlasting burning, and I am born of God.'
Because of the all the sins that Alma committed, he had to pay for those sins in order to be forgiven. He had a 'change of heart' because of the suffering he went through. He had a very tiny taste of what the Savior went through when He had to bare the weight of the world alone. If Alma felt this way when paying for only his sins alone, what of the Savior when He had no sins of His own to pay for, but because we could not do it ourselves, He chose to pay this debt on our behalf. I always get so emotional when I think of the atoning sacrifice of the Savior. It humbles me in ways nothing else can or ever will. This is the 'change of heart' I am working towards and the Lord, in His mercy and love, has been leading me and guiding me step by step in learning how to serve others with a desire to do good continually. Slowly increasing my desire to serve others has been the answer for me to have my heart changed in the way I've needed it to so that I can act on the promptings of the Holy Ghost when prompted to do so. I try my best not to make excuses or doubt my righteous desires. I know where those desires are coming from. My faith has increased and I act more, instead of just hoping. I am grateful for the gospel in my life. I'm eternally blessed to be able to feel of my Savior's love for me every day of my life. I try my best not to take advantage of it.
If you're feeling empty, lonely, or a yearning for more. . . . .something that you just can't put your finger on what that something is? I invite you to learn more about the Book Of Mormon by clicking here. You have nothing to lose, but everything to gain. Have an open mind and a prayerful heart and I promise you that you will find the answers you've been looking for that you haven't been able to find anywhere else.