When I was in my 20s, I had to take a very hard exam to get into a prominent business school in France. I had been studying long hours every day for two years. But I always went to church and institute and fulfilled my Church responsibilities.
The most important part of the exam was the interview. I had an interview with one school, and when they found out I was a member of the Church, it didn’t go well.
Then I took the exam with the school I wanted to go to most. After some time in the interview, the interviewers started asking questions about what I did outside my studying hours. I knew that it was a go/no-go question for me. But I decided in a second I would be faithful to my principles.
I said, “I’m a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints,” and then I spent 15 minutes explaining what I did in the Church.
The director of the school said, “You know, I’m glad you said this. When I was a student, I studied in the United States, and one of my best friends was a Mormon. He was a great man, a very kind person. I consider the Mormons to be very good people.”
What a relief! I was one of the first candidates that year to be accepted to this school.
There are two lessons out of this story. First, we shouldn’t underestimate the influence we have on others. Second, we should always be faithful to our principles. Make your best effort, and the Lord will help you with the rest.