“Everyday Example,” New Era, Jan. 2010, 44–45
When I was a junior in high school my parents invited my very best friend, Joe, to live with us. Joe’s parents moved away when he was about to graduate. He did not want to leave, so my parents welcomed him into our home so that he could finish high school.
Joe came from a different background than I did. His family had their struggles, and the principles of the gospel were not emphasized as much as they were in our home.
Joe and I shared a room together in the basement of my parents’ house. Every night before I went to bed I would make it a point to read my scriptures. Joe, on the other hand, had not developed a habit of reading his scriptures every day. There were nights when it was late and we were tired. Joe would often complain and tell me to turn the light off and go to bed, but I persisted, knowing that the Lord would bless me if I read my scriptures as He had commanded. Eventually, Joe moved into the room next to mine, but he always knew when my light was still on.
Joe had told me that he wasn’t sure if he wanted to go on a mission, but once he was 19, he surprised us all by announcing that he was going to serve. He turned in his mission papers and received a call to the Toronto Canada East Mission.
The Sunday came for him to give a talk in sacrament meeting. He said a few things that were a surprise to us all, particularly me. Joe said that one of the biggest influences in his decision to serve a full-time mission was the example that I had set for him in reading my scriptures every night. He said that although I might have not realized the impact it was making, he had thought about it a lot. My scripture reading had impressed him to turn his life around and serve a mission. He said that if it weren’t for me and my family, he probably wouldn’t be going. As I listened to him, I felt the power of the Holy Ghost flow through my body. I had no idea of the impact I had made on Joe’s life.
Joe was the first in his family to serve a mission. Later, his younger brother also served. Joe’s family has been greatly blessed ever since through active service in the Church. Great blessings come to those who keep the commandments of the Lord. We may never know how they will come, but they will come.