Visiting Teaching Message:

A Witness at All Times and in All Places

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    “I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation” (Rom. 1:16).

    At baptism, we make a covenant to “stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places” (Mosiah 18:9). Bearing such witness is an act of obedience and faith. When we share our testimonies, our hearers are blessed—and so are we.

    Our Mission Is to Testify of Our Savior

    President Gordon B. Hinckley declared, “This is our great mission—to bear witness to the world, both with example and precept, of the living reality of the Son of God” (Ensign, May 1992, page 89).

    The Lord promises to help as we do our part: “Open your mouths and they shall be filled. … For lo, I am with you” (D&C 33:8–9). “Neither take ye thought beforehand what ye shall say; but treasure up in your minds continually the words of life, and it shall be given you in the very hour” (D&C 84:85; see also D&C 100:5–6).

    Sometimes we may be a little fearful of sharing our testimonies, perhaps because we do not wish to offend or to be criticized. President Thomas S. Monson, First Counselor in the First Presidency, tells of a time when he faced the choice of bearing testimony or remaining silent. On an airplane flight, an off-duty flight attendant sat next to him reading a copy of A Marvelous Work and a Wonder. President Monson discovered that she was not a member of the Church. He recalls:

    “I wondered silently, Should I be forward and say more about the Church? The words of the Apostle Peter crossed my mind: ‘Be ready always to give an answer to every [one] that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you’ [1 Pet. 3:15]. I decided that now was the time for me to share my testimony with her.”

    This woman later joined the Church and thanked President Monson for sharing his testimony (see Ensign, May 1995, page 50).

    Joy comes not only to those who find the gospel, but also to those who share it with them. Like President Monson, many Latter-day Saints have felt the gratitude that comes from helping bring friends and loved ones to the truth by courageously sharing their testimonies.

    There Is Power in Testimony

    Some people may feel that they need eloquent words or lofty reasoning when sharing their testimonies. But simple words offered in faith and humility contain great spiritual power. Sister Anne Osborn Poelman tells of her conversion to the Church. As she met with the missionaries, the most powerful testimony was unexpectedly borne by a young elder who had been a missionary just one week. He was nervous. Sister Poelman tells that when she challenged his statement that he knew the gospel was true, “he paused and gulped. ‘Well, Sister Osborn,’ he finally said as he looked me straight in the eye, ‘I guess I just believe it so hard I know it’s true!’ How can anyone argue with such an earnest, deeply felt testimony? I really couldn’t” (The Simeon Solution, Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Company, 1995, page 59).

    • What blessings come from bearing testimony?

    • What can you do to be ready to bear witness of the Savior?

    Illustrated by Judith Mehr