The Harrowing Night Elder Oaks Was Held at Gunpoint & the Miraculous Inspiration He Received

by | Oct. 28, 2015

Mormon Life

MR says: What an incredible story that illustrates how our Heavenly Father protects those who listen to His promptings. Elder Oaks' compassion and surprising response to this harrowing ordeal demonstrate his faith and charity for others.

When General Authorities in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints speak to church members around the world, they often share personal stories or experiences to illustrate a gospel principle or reinforce a specific truth. President Thomas S. Monson is universally loved for the many wonderful stories he frequently shares. 

One of my favorite stories told by a General Authority is a personal experience Elder Dallin H. Oaks shared in General Conference 23 years ago when I was a sophomore in high school. At the time, Elder Oaks looked back more than 20 years to the harrowing experience he and his wife faced late one night when they were confronted by a would-be robber at gunpoint on the streets of Chicago.

The story is gripping because it must have been so terrifying. I also love that it illustrates the way the Lord protects His servants and the way revelation can guide us through difficult, even life-threatening situations. As the Lord promised, "It shall be given you in the very hour, yea, in the very moment what ye shall say" (Doctrine & Covenants 100:6). Here is the experience, in Elder Oaks’ own words:

During my life I have had many experiences of being guided in what I should do and in being protected from injury and also from evil. The Lord’s protecting care has shielded me from the evil acts of others and has also protected me from surrendering to my own worst impulses. I enjoyed that protection one warm summer night on the streets of Chicago. I have never shared this experience in public. I do so now because it is a persuasive illustration of my subject.

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