New Experience

    Bullied No More

    Young men of the Aaronic Priesthood, you are beloved sons of God, and He has a great work for you to do. To accomplish this work, you must fulfill your sacred duty to minister to others (see D&C 84:111).

    Do you know what it means to minister? Think about this question while I tell you about a girl named Chy Johnson.

    When Chy started high school last year, she became the victim of cruel and thoughtless bullying. She was mistreated, shoved, and taunted as she walked to class—some students even threw garbage at her. You have probably seen people mistreated like this in your school too.

    For too many people, the teenage years are a time of loneliness and fear. It doesn’t have to be this way. Fortunately for Chy, there were young men at her school who understood what it means to minister.

    Chy’s mother had asked teachers at the school to help stop the bullying, but it continued. She then contacted Carson Jones, an Aaronic Priesthood holder and the starting quarterback of the football team. She asked him to help her find out who was doing the bullying.

    Carson agreed to help, but in his heart he felt that he could do much more than just identify the bullies. The Spirit whispered to him that he needed to help Chy feel loved.

    Carson asked some of his teammates to join him in ministering to Chy. They invited her to sit with them during lunch. They walked her to class to make sure she was safe. Not surprisingly, with football players as her close friends, no one bullied Chy anymore.

    This was an exciting season for the football team. But even with the thrill of an undefeated season, these young men did not forget about Chy. They invited her to join the team on the field after games. Chy felt loved and appreciated. She felt safe. She was happy.

    The football team went on to win the state title. But something more important than a football championship happened at their school. The example of these young men has motivated other students to be more accepting, more friendly. They now treat each other with more kindness and respect.

    National news media found out what these young men had done and shared their story across the country. What began as an effort to minister to one is inspiring thousands of others to do the same.

    Chy’s mother calls these young men “angels in disguise.” Carson and his friends are quick to say that Chy has blessed their lives much more than they blessed hers. That’s what happens when you lose yourself in serving others—you find yourself (see Mark 8:35). You change and grow in ways that would not be possible otherwise. These young men have experienced the joy of ministering and continue to seek opportunities to bless others. They are anxious to extend their ministering in the coming months when they serve as full-time missionaries (see Trent Toone, “Kindness of Arizona High School QB Carson Jones and Teammates Has Gone Viral,” Deseret News, Nov. 9, 2012).

    There are thousands of Chy Johnsons throughout the world—people who need to feel Heavenly Father’s love. They are in your schools, in your quorums, and even in your family. Some come to mind quickly. Others have needs that are less obvious. Virtually everyone you know could be blessed in some way by your ministering. The Lord is counting on you to reach out to them.

    You don’t have to be a star athlete to minister to others. You received the power, the authority, and the sacred duty to minister the moment you were ordained to the priesthood. President James E. Faust taught, “Priesthood is the authority delegated to man to minister in the name of God” (“Message to My Grandsons,” Ensign, May 2007, 54; emphasis added). The Aaronic Priesthood holds the keys of the ministering of angels (see D&C 13:1).

    As you love His children, Heavenly Father will guide you, and angels will assist you (see D&C 84:88). You will be given power to bless lives and rescue souls.

    Jesus Christ is your example. He “came not to be ministered unto, but to minister” (see Matthew 20:27–28). To minister means to love and care for others. It means to attend to their physical and spiritual needs. Put simply, it means to do what the Savior would do if He were here.

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