Trying to Be Like Jesus Christ

By Canek Méndez de Bengoechea, age 11

To Be More Like Christ

Be gentle and loving in deed and in thought, For these are the things Jesus taught (Children’s Songbook, page 79).

Several years ago, an elderly sister in my branch passed away. Everyone called her Abuelita (Grandma) Flores. At her funeral, I noticed that some of her family who are not members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints were sobbing. My mom explained that they probably thought that they would never see Abuelita Flores again. I don’t like to see people suffer. I told my mom, “When I grow up and marry in the temple, I will have a daughter and I will call her Abuelita Flores so that they won’t cry anymore.” I believe that trying to comfort people who are sad brings us closer to being like Christ.

I have an illness called miastenia gravis. I also have attention deficit disorder and hyperactivity. Because of these things, I act differently than other children. Lots of people don’t understand, and many don’t even try.

Children in my school often want to hit me, but I don’t fight with them. Recently I began learning karate—for my health, I am supposed to get exercise. My schoolmates want me to teach them—or at least demonstrate—the different karate moves and techniques. I always say no, because I’m not learning them in order to fight but to gain discipline and the values that come with it. I want to be able to defend myself if I have to, but I never look for a fight. Jesus Christ always taught with calmness and love. Avoiding contention makes me more like Him.

Finding Money

Let every man deal honestly (D&C 51:9).

One day when I was at the grocery store with my mom and my grandma, I found some money on the floor. I picked it up and showed it to my mom. She asked me what we are supposed to do when we find something that doesn’t belong to us. We went to the office, and I turned it in so the person who lost it could find it. The people in the office thanked me for being so honest, and they took my name and phone number. They said that if no one came for the money, they would call me and I could have it. I felt happy inside because I had done the right thing. I knew Heavenly Father and Jesus were proud of me.

Helping a Neighbor

In doing … good unto thy fellow beings, [thou] wilt promote the glory of him who is your Lord (D&C 81:4).

We had recently moved to Middlebury, Indiana, from San Antonio, Texas, and were looking forward to seeing snow. When it came, Jordan and his friend Justin shoveled a neighbor’s sidewalk because they liked her and wanted to help her. They were delighted with the unexpected reward of doughnuts and hot chocolate when they finished her walk and driveway.

[photo] Jordan Mears, age 9 (right) and his friend, Justin Utley, Elkhart Indiana Ward, South Bend Indiana Stake