Preach the Gospel
For many years I had a question that no one could answer for me. I needed to clearly define if God was one or three different personages in one being, or simply three different personages with one purpose. I knew that there was only one answer since God never changes. After continuous Bible study, I even got more confused. In one verse stated that there is only one God and in other verse stated that He comprises three separate personages. Seeking an answer to my question, I asked various spiritual leaders from different denominations. I received a variety of answers and continued to be confused.
In 2004 I had lunch with a co-worker, John Hernandez. I asked him about his own belief in God. His simple answer got my attention. He said; “They are three different personages with one purpose, God the Father, God the Son, referring to Jesus Christ, and God the Holy Spirit”. He encouraged me to compliment my Bible study by reading “The Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Jesus Christ”. He also invited my wife and I to attend the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints where he was the Branch President. I didn’t know anything about the Church, but I remembered the excellent television messages from my boyhood. My wife and I prayed and decided to visit the Church. That day changed our lives! The members were very friendly and gave us a warm welcome making us feel as part of the congregation. Two young men wearing a name tags also helped us to feel comfortable. Elder Woods and Elder Knickerbocker asked us if they could visit our home for teachings of Jesus Christ and we accepted. During the first lesson, I asked the question; “Who is God”. Their simple answer helped me to feel something special that I never felt before. I felt peace in my heart and obtained a testimony that they were true messengers from God. They had something special.
The Elders challenged us to read the Book of Mormon and to ask God, the Eternal Father in the name of Jesus Christ if the book contained the true gospel of Jesus Christ. They said that if we asked God with faith, we would receive an answer. They taught us how to pray. The same night my wife and I did our homework. We read the testimony of the three witnesses, eight witness, the testimony of Joseph Smith, and the brief explanation of the Book of Mormon contained in the book. We also read Moroni 10:3-5: “To ask the Eternal Father in the name of Jesus Christ if those things were not true and if we ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth into us, by the power of the Holy Ghost. And by the power of the Holy Ghost we may know the truth of all things”.
We received our answer that same night with peace in our hearts. I received confirmation that the Book of Mormon was true, Joseph Smith was a prophet of God and the Church of Jesus Christ was restored on earth. I also received revelation that the Elders who were teaching us were true messengers from God. My wife also received confirmation of these truths.
When the Elders visited our home for the second lesson, we immediately asked them if we could be baptized. They looked each other and started to cry with happiness knowing that we received an answer directly from God. Two weeks later we both got baptized. What a wonderful blessing that a co-worker and his wife, opened their mouth to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and helped us to find the Church of God on earth. They also personally taught us about the temple and were present for our sealing day one year later in the Dominican Republic, Santo Domingo Temple. Preaching the gospel is everyone’s duty. The Lord said, “Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost”. (Mathew 28:19).
A week after I got baptized, I was ordained a Priest in the Aaronic Priesthood. I now had the authority from God to bless and pass the Sacraments of the Lord’s supper, help the needy and to minister to others. The Aaronic Priesthood prepared me to receive the Melchizedek Priesthood. Soon I was ordained to the office of Elder and ready to follow the example of Christ in serving others. The Lord said, “Wherefore, now let every man learn his duty, and to act in the office in which he is appointed, in all diligence. He that is slothful shall not be counted worthy to stand, and he that learns not his duty and shows himself not approved shall not be counted worthy to stand. Even so. Amen”. (Doctrine and Covenants 107:99-100).
Ordinances such as baptisms, confirmations, administering to the sick, blessing and passing the Sacrament, conferring and ordaining to the priesthood, consecrating oil, dedicating a grave, father’s blessings and blessings of comfort, naming and blessing children, sealings at the Temple, are always performed by the authority of the priesthood and in the name of Jesus Christ.
We have a big responsibility to minister to others just like Jesus did. President Russell M. Nelson said, “Effective ministering efforts are enabled by the innate gifts of the sisters, and by the incomparable power of the priesthood”. We are not alone with these important duties of the priesthood. Our wives, daughters and female leaders are also ready to minister. We are a team! They are also an essential part of God’s plan. With them we can better fulfill our callings in the priesthood.
How grateful we are to have friends who preached the gospel to us! By preaching the gospel and honoring the priesthood with diligence we are preparing the Lord’s kingdom on earth for His second coming. Let’s do it with love and joy!.