Through various callings and service in the Church, Elder Larry Ray Lawrence has learned to “trust in the Lord with all [his] heart” (Proverbs 3:5).
Born in August 1947 to Argil and Mary Lawrence in Cheverly, Maryland, Elder Lawrence grew up in Tucson, Arizona. He pursued his education at the University of Arizona, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in agricultural biochemistry and a doctorate of medicine, leading to an ophthalmology career.
He joined the Church in 1970, at the age of 23, and married Laurel Stott in the Mesa Arizona Temple on November 5, 1971.
Before his call to the Second Quorum of the Seventy, he fulfilled callings including elders quorum president, bishop, high councilor, stake president, and stake mission president.
Elder Lawrence says that just as his life seemed to be winding down, with their six children grown and on their own, he and his wife were called to preside over the Russia Novosibirsk Mission in Siberia in 2001. Elder and Sister Lawrence were required to exercise complete faith as they left their home and family behind to serve in a land where the language, people, and climate were completely unfamiliar.
“It was a great test for us in just putting our trust in the Lord,” Sister Lawrence says. “Everything we worried about fell into place, and [the experience] changed our lives.”
A sign in the kitchen of the mission home provided a constant reminder to “look unto [the Savior] in every thought; doubt not, fear not” (D&C 6:36).
Elder and Sister Lawrence count their mission experience as among the greatest in their lives and feel it prepared them for their new responsibilities with Elder Lawrence’s call to the Seventy.
“We don’t know what’s ahead, but we know it will be good,” Elder Lawrence says.