Illustration by Julie Yellow
Rain poured as a cold wind blew. I saw trees that had been uprooted and lost all their leaves. The power was off in some areas due to damaged electrical lines. The scene before me was now like a haunted place. Everything had been blown away. People were starving for food and longing for shelter.
My heart was filled with the desire to serve. My family and other members of the Church had traveled to a poor community where a typhoon had devastated thousands of homes and taken thousands of lives. We were there to give relief goods to the victims.
When we first arrived, I had seen the mourning in people’s faces. I realized then how blessed we were that our homes hadn’t been destroyed.
It was still raining when we started handing out relief packs at a muddy, roofless gym, but that didn’t matter to us. The relief packs—sets of plastic trays, kettles, plates, spoons, forks, glasses, and flasks—we nicknamed “home-return kits.” As my family and I handed relief packs to the people, they gave us warm smiles and thank-yous.
The priceless gratitude of the people uplifted me, and I felt the influence of the Spirit. Their smiles manifested that there is hope and that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ will never leave us and will always bring light to our dark days.
I know that if we serve and love one another, we will gain eternal blessings and inherit Christlike attributes. The blessings of serving do not always come right away, but they will come if we continue to serve others with a sincere heart. I know that “when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God” (Mosiah 2:17).
An Instrument in God’s Hands
“Often Heavenly Father will meet the needs of others through you. … As you devote yourself to serving others, … you will enjoy happiness that comes only from giving service. … Your capacities will increase, and you will be an instrument in God’s hands to bless the lives of His children.”
For the Strength of Youth (2011), 32, 33.