“How to Be a Digital Missionary,” New Era, March 2018
Your palms sweat. You bite your lip in anxiety. You’re about to hit Send on a message that you’ve been retyping for the last half hour. Are you crazy for thinking your soccer-star neighbor could be interested in the stripling warriors?
Everyone needs the gospel: your friends, classmates, teachers, teammates, neighbors, even strangers! As your love for them grows, your desire to reveal truth and blessings to them increases. Unlike you, they may not know they are children of God or that they have divine potential. That’s where you come in. When the Spirit prompts you to share something, follow that impression—now!
Missionary work can sometimes be daunting—but it’s not as hard as it seems. If you have access to social media, it’s an easy way to start conversations with friends and family. You can be a missionary just by adding the gospel to the mix!
The following tips can help you know what to do, from start to finish.
Pray to choose specific people to share the gospel with.
When you pray, tell Heavenly Father that you want to share the gospel. Ask Him who He wants you to reach out to. After praying to know who you should contact, try scrolling through your list of friends or followers. Once someone’s name has popped into your head or caught your eye, it’s time to send them a message! Even if you haven’t talked to someone in ages—you can reconnect with them and eventually try sharing a gospel message. Friends are rarely offended if you are coming from a place of true caring.
Don’t let the moment pass.
Once you’ve received inspiration, take action right away! The longer you wait, the easier it will be to forget or to become lazy. The Holy Ghost has inspired you in a specific moment for a reason, so hop to it! You might help a friend right when they need it the most.
Tailor your message to a specific person’s needs.
If you contact a friend with a specific message made for them, they will feel loved and special. Consider their current circumstances—what could be uplifting for them to hear? For example, if your friend’s grandma has recently died, it may be comforting to hear about the Savior’s Resurrection or eternal families.
Involve the Spirit.
Always include the Holy Ghost in every step of your missionary adventure. You may not always know what people need, but God does—and He can tell you through the Spirit. The Spirit may help you know who to contact, what to say, and how to say it, so be sure to pay attention to any promptings you may have during your conversation. Pause before you press Send. Is there anything the Holy Ghost wants you to add or change?
Find common ground.
What do you have in common? Use that as a starting point for your conversation. If you and a friend struggle with similar trials, share scriptures or other insights that have given you hope. If your friend loves spending time with family, invite the whole bunch over for a family home evening at your place. If you are part of a choir or musical group with friends, play songs from youth.lds.org that they might enjoy.
Bear simple yet powerful testimony.
Remember, when you testify of the truth, the Holy Ghost can teach with power and touch your friend’s heart. Share what you know in simple terms like, “I know that we are all children of God and that He loves us.”
Sometimes social media seems like the least likely place to have missionary success—but in reality, there are many people waiting to hear the truth, no matter where they find it! Be brave, and ask the Spirit to guide you to friends that are in need of spiritual uplift. You never know—you just might make their day!