Elder Neil L. Andersen spoke to BYU students this week on what it means to minister.
“As disciples of Christ, we strongly reject the notion that our lives are all about ourselves,” Elder Andersen said. “Rather, we follow the Savior.”
“Your ability to bring a holier approach to loving your neighbor, to caring and ministering to others will rest upon how strongly you keep the first commandment,” he said. “There is a unique and supernal gift of ministering that can come from someone who loves God with all his or her heart, and is settled, grounded, steadfast and immovable in his or her faith in Jesus Christ and in the restored gospel, and keeps the commandments with exactness.”
Following the pattern of the Savior in ministering will be different from one person to another, he said. Sharing the example of a friend helping another friend who was experiencing doubts, Elder Andersen said ministering is more than just a one-time event.
“Unlike changing a flat tire, one experience rarely fixes a spiritual problem,” Elder Andersen said. “It takes time, conversations and encouraging experiences that will help rebuild faith. It comes more like the dew from heaven than a one-time blast from a fire hose. You have to minister again and again, as you help someone turn back to God, again relying on the Savior and His Atonement.”