Adrianne’s Great Task


Love the Lord thy God, and … obey his voice (Deut. 30:20).

One Sunday Adrianne sat listening to Sister Newby in sacrament meeting. Sister Newby was Adrianne’s Merrie Miss teacher, and one of Adrianne’s favorite people.

“Remember what our prophet, President Benson, told us at conference,” Sister Newby said. “‘The great test of life is obedience to God. … The great task of life is to learn the will of the Lord and then do it. The great commandment of life is to love the Lord.’” *

Normally Adrianne liked to hear everything that Sister Newby had to say—but not today. Something was bothering Adrianne, and the words of President Benson made her feel more uneasy.

As soon as sacrament meeting was over, Adrianne went right up to Sister Newby. “You gave a nice talk,” she said.

“Thank you, Adrianne. I hope that it meant something to you.”

“Did President Benson really say the great task in life is to learn the will of the Lord and then do it?”

“Yes, he did,” said Sister Newby. “He said it in April conference a few years ago.”

“How do we know what the will of the Lord is?”

“Sometimes we know because the prophets have told us. And sometimes we know because we keep having a feeling about something. We feel like there is something we should do, and the feeling won’t go away.”

“That’s what’s happening to me,” said Adrianne. “I keep having a feeling that I should do something nice for a new girl named Rita in my class at school. I keep thinking I should make my favorite pumpkin cookies ** and give them to her.”

“Why don’t you do it?” asked Sister Newby. “That would be an easy task—a fun one too.”

“I’m scared,” Adrianne admitted. “I don’t really know Rita, and I’ve never seen her parents. Maybe they’ll think I’m a little weird.”

“Is that what you thought when I brought you those brownies when your family moved here?” asked Sister Newby.

Adrianne was embarrassed as she remembered the delicious brownies Sister Newby had brought them last spring. “No, but you did it because you were going to be my teacher.”

Sister Newby laughed. “I did it because at the time I had a feeling that it would be a nice thing to do.”

“I see what you mean,” said Adrianne. “Well—I think Heavenly Father wants me to take cookies over to Rita’s house, so I’m going to do it!”

When Adrianne got home from school on Monday, she started making pumpkin cookies right away. After they were baked and cooled, she frosted them with creamy white frosting. The longer she worked on the cookies, the more she had doubts about delivering them to Rita.

“I don’t think I’ll take these to Rita,” Adrianne said to her mom as she finished frosting them. “What if Rita won’t even open the door. I’ll stand there looking really silly.”

Adrianne’s mom had agreed with Sister Newby when Adrianne explained the feeling she had been having. Mom now offered to drive Adrianne to Rita’s house, adding, “But you do what you think is best.”

“I’m not sure what I want to do. I keep thinking of what President Benson said. ‘The great test of life is obedience to God. … The great task of life is to learn the will of the Lord and then do it. The great commandment of life is to love the Lord.’”

Adrianne looked at the pumpkin cookies. “Well, I do love the Lord, and I keep thinking He wants me to take these cookies to Rita. So I guess I’ll just do it if you’ll please drive me there and wait in the car.”

“Sure,” said Mom. “I’ll be glad to.”

Adrianne put the cookies on a paper plate and covered them with plastic wrap. They looked wonderful. Encouraged, she went into her bedroom and said a prayer. That gave her even more courage. Then she and Mom drove to Rita’s house.

“Wish me luck,” said Adrianne as she left the car and started up the walk to the front porch. It seemed like a long walk to Adrianne, and it took forever for the door to open after she rang the doorbell.

Later, when Adrianne left Rita’s house, she ran back to the car. “I can’t believe I was in there all that time,” she said when she looked at the clock in the car. “I’m sorry I made you wait so long.”

“That’s OK,” said Mom. “When you’ve been a mom as long as I have, you come prepared.” She held up a book she was reading. “How did it go?”

“It was wonderful! Rita was so surprised that she didn’t know what to say. We just stood there looking at each other at first. Then she invited me in, and we started talking and talking. And you’ll never guess what she said.”

“I give up. What did she say?”

“While we were talking, she found out I’m a Latter-day Saint. One of her best friends where she used to live was a Church member too. She asked me if she could go to church with me!”

“I think you were right, Adrianne. Heavenly Father did want you to go over and get to know Rita.”

“Yes, and I’m happy I did. I can’t wait for Sunday to come. You know, I have a feeling that Sister Newby won’t be a bit surprised when I bring Rita to Merrie Miss class.”

[illustrations] Illustrated by Shauna Kawasaki

Show References

  1.   *

    Ensign, May 1988, page 4.

  2.   **

    For recipe, see page 10.