Friend to Friend: Good Example Friendshipper


Good Example Friendshipper

Elder Paul H. Dunn

My Dear Young Friends,

I want to tell you about one of the most exciting experiences and blessings you can have in this life—it is the privilege of being a missionary for the Savior. But I do not mean when you are older. I’m talking about right now. Our prophet, President Spencer W. Kimball, like our previous prophet, David O. McKay, has said, “Every member a missionary.” That includes children as well as adults. The prophets know, I believe, what fine missionaries boys and girls can be and that they should not wait until they are grown up. They can start being missionaries today. Let me tell you two things you can do.

The first thing is to set a good example. Lots of people become interested in the Church because of the good example members set. Let me share one story with you. Sometime ago, a little friend named Jessica invited one of her nonmember friends over to her house to play. As they were playing, the friend took Heavenly Father’s name in vain. It took courage, but Jessica stopped her and said, “I’m sorry, but in my house we don’t swear or ever use Heavenly Father’s name that way.” Her friend was not angry but, instead, asked Jessica why. This gave Jessica a chance to tell her friend about the Church.

At one time Jesus taught, “Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven” (Matt. 5:16). He is instructing us to be good examples everywhere so that people will see how content we are and become interested in what we believe.

The second thing you can do is to be a friendshipper. A friendshipper is a person who tries to be a friend to people and invite them out to church activities. Sometimes it’s hard to go to a new place when you don’t know anyone there. But if you have a friend, it makes it much easier. This lesson I learned with one of our daughters.

As school was about to begin for the year, she was a little nervous because she had to go to a new school. Sister Dunn and I told her everything would be fine, but on the morning when she had to go she was frightened. She didn’t know if she would be accepted or if she would make new friends or if her teacher would like her. She announced, “I don’t think I had better go to school today.”

I said, “Why not?”

She answered, “I think I’m going to get sick.”

We decided that it would help if I took her to school. But when we got there she didn’t want to get out of the car, so I helped her out. As we walked up the sidewalk she grabbed my leg, and by the time we were inside she had both legs. She was really scared. Then a wonderful thing happened. Along came a friendshipper. She saw my frightened daughter and came running up and said, “Hi, Kellie. How are you?” And in about five seconds my daughter forgot all about being afraid. I remember that as she left me she stopped a few paces away and said, “You can go now Dad—I don’t need you anymore.” This wonderful little friendshipper took Kellie’s hand and now everything was all right.

Thank God for little people who know how to friendship, because it really helps. As you friendship your friends, by having them go with you to Primary or Sunday School, they won’t need to be scared but will be able to enjoy the Church, and in this way you will be a great missionary.

[illustration] Illustrated by Shauna Mooney