Strength Training


The mud stuck to our shoes, but we stuck to our work—and were blessed.

As a young man I came across a Mormonad that really struck me: “Adversity can make you strong.” I never imagined I would later find in this phrase the strength to go forward during challenges of my mission.

The town in the Argentina Buenos Aires North Mission where my companion and I were working was filled with people who viewed two boys in white shirts and ties with distrust. We knocked on many doors, with no result.

On one particularly hot and difficult day, when our tired bodies felt like they could go no further, it began to rain. Mud developed and stuck to our shoes, making tracting even more difficult.

We wanted to return home, but then I remembered the phrase from the magazine and told my companion, “Come on, Elder. All this adversity is going to make us strong.”

We offered a prayer and felt we should look up an old referral we had never been able to find.

We arrived at the house, and again the woman was not there. But another woman, Anita, was. We gave her a Book of Mormon, and she promised to read it. We felt great happiness because we knew the Spirit had led us to her.

As we began to teach Anita, she accepted all the principles. However, when it was time for the fourth discussion, she told us she didn’t want to be baptized and asked us to leave. My companion and I were disappointed, but we were prepared for opposition. We invited Anita to ask Heavenly Father if she should be baptized, and trusted she would receive an answer.

When we went back the next day, Anita had indeed received an undeniable answer of peace in her heart. Ten days later, she was baptized.

I have since learned that one year later, Anita made covenants in the temple and became a source of referrals for the missionaries and a great example to the members of her community.

I value the opposition we had because that was how we found the strength to serve the Lord in the best way we could. Even now that I’ve returned home to Chile, I don’t become discouraged with problems because I now know how adversity can strengthen us.

[illustration] Illustrated by Richard Hull