- What can you do to prepare to be a missionary now and in the future?
- How can you support and encourage young men to prepare for a mission and remain worthy of the Spirit?
Excerpt from "Becoming a Missionary" by David A. Bednar:
In meetings with young members of the Church around the world, I often invite those in attendance to ask questions. One of the questions I am asked most frequently by young men is this: “What can I do to prepare most effectively to serve as a full-time missionary?” Such a sincere question deserves a serious response.
My dear young brethren, the single most important thing you can do to prepare for a call to serve is to become a missionary long before you go on a mission. Please notice that in my answer I emphasized becoming rather than going. Let me explain what I mean.
In our customary Church vocabulary, we often speak of going to church, going to the temple, and going on a mission. Let me be so bold as to suggest that our rather routine emphasis on going misses the mark.
The issue is not going to church; rather, the issue is worshipping and renewing covenants as we attend church. The issue is not going to or through the temple; rather, the issue is having in our hearts the spirit, the covenants, and the ordinances of the Lord’s house. The issue is not going on a mission; rather, the issue is becoming a missionary and serving throughout our entire life with all of our heart, might, mind, and strength. It is possible for a young man to go on a mission and not become a missionary, and this is not what the Lord requires or what the Church needs.
My earnest hope for each of you young men is that you will not simply go on a mission—but that you will become missionaries long before you submit your mission papers, long before you receive a call to serve, long before you are set apart by your stake president, and long before you enter the MTC.
*To read the full talk, click here.