This generation is "on the threshold of the most significant missionary success to date," Elder Quentin L. Cook, executive director of the Missionary Department of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, said this week.
Addressing the regular devotional assembly at Brigham Young University, Elder Cook cited a recent Gallup Poll that said 46 percent of Americans view members of The Church of Jesus Christ unfavorably.
However, he urged students not to become discouraged because missionary work is hard, referencing Elder Jeffrey R. Holland, who said, "I am convinced that missionary work is not easy because salvation is not a cheap experience. Salvation never was easy. We are The Church of Jesus Christ, this is the truth, and He is our Great Eternal Head. How could we believe it would be easy for us when it was never, ever easy for Him?"
As people become more and more consumed by the pursuit of material wealth and worldly objectives, Elder Cook said, it is our challenge to share the joys of the gospel with those around us so that they can find peace and happiness and exaltation.
"Peace in this life," he said, "does not come from merely pursuing worldly objectives."
With this in mind, he posed the question, "How can we be effective missionaries?"
Echoing President David O. McKay’s mantra, "Every member a missionary," Elder Cook said we first must be a missionary all our lives. It is then necessary to "overcome feelings of hesitancy or inadequacy." Though all who attempt missionary work feel weak in some way, faith and obedience will prevail despite our inadequacies.
Finally, Elder Cook told students to always "be a good example and take every opportunity to share the gospel." Missionary work is an essential doctrine in the Savior's teachings, and in the Church it is divinely appointed and the lifeblood of the church, he said.
"Missionary work is not just one of the 88 keys on a piano that is occasionally played; it is a major chord in a compelling melody that needs to be played continuously throughout our lives if we are to remain in harmony with our commitment to Christianity and the Gospel of Jesus Christ," Elder Cook concluded.
Writer: Alexis Plowman