Chances are good that you have seen a couple of young men dressed in suits with name tags walking or biking around your home town, most likely with smiles on their faces. Have you ever wondered what exactly they were doing out there?
Those young men (and sometimes young women) are usually between the ages of 18-21, and they are serving a two-year mission at their own expense on behalf of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. During those 2 years, they work proselytizing, giving church service, providing humanitarian aid, and doing a lot of community service.
Why do Missionaries do what they do?
If you were given a special present that gave you great joy, what would be the first thought in your mind? You would be excited and want to tell your friends all about it! Perhaps you would take a selfie with the gift and post it on Facebook, or message your friend and enthuse about it with them. You would want to share your joy.
The missionaries that you see out and about, both men and women, are there to share joy in a world that is becoming increasingly stressful and complex. The missionaries have an understanding of who we are, where we came from, what the purpose of life really is, and above all, what and who the gospel of Jesus Christ is for- and they are sharing this with all who will listen.
Desire and obedience
Besides the desire to share the gospel, These young people are showing obedience to God. Sharing the gospel is a commandment from Jesus Christ, and they have the willingness to put aside their own interests and lives for a couple of years to be obedient to Christ’s charge to “Go ye therefore and
teach all nations”. Pretty impressive stuff for a teenager!
What makes the Mormons different?
These missionaries have a few things that set them apart- they have The Book of Mormon, the gift of the Holy Ghost, and the Priesthood.
“The Book of Mormon was written to convince everyone, both Jews and Gentiles, that “Jesus is the Christ, the Eternal God, manifesting himself unto all nations” (Title page). Missionary work is therefore a central theme and one of the divine purposes of the Book of Mormon. The Book of Mormon in combination with the Spirit of the Lord is ‘the greatest single tool which God has given us to bring souls to the Savior.” (“Missionary, Family History, and Temple Work” Ensign, Oct. 2014).
We are in a war.
There are over 80,000 LDS missionaries spread all over the world today. That is a pretty impressive number of willing teenagers, but it is a drop in the bucket of what is needed. Why are missionaries important right now? Because we are in a war. God is real, Jesus Christ is divine and our savior and is very real, and unfortunately, Satan is real as well. This period of time, these generations that are in such commotion around the globe, have been foretold for thousands of years. Just as the birth of Jesus Christ was prophesied, so is His return to earth- and Satan is doing all he can to prevent us from being ready for Jesus.
The Book of Revelations was placed as the last book in the Bible. Although it was not written last, it was put last in the Bible for a reason; After the exciting news in the New Testament about the birth and mission of Jesus Christ, and the news of His death and resurrection, we read finally in Revelations about the ‘last days’ before Jesus comes back in person to the earth that He made, to take over as Lord and King. Jesus told us that these last generations before He steps back in to take over will be tough. We are in a battle between good and evil, with evil getting more and more desperate to blind the eyes of mankind to prevent them from turning to Christ. The coming of Christ back to the earth will be a “hinge of history” (Elder Oaks, Preparing for the Second Coming) that the missionaries are preparing the world for.
The troubles in our world …we knew they were coming
Those young men and women with the little black name tags that you see around town understand that all the cultural, political and moral challenges that are happening around us are prophesied, and they understand what that means- we need to switch our focus, and now, to make repentance and faith in Jesus Christ our foremost priority in life. When we have become strengthened, we must turn and help our neighbors, family and friends.
In the words of Christ:
Jesus’s final instructions to the Twelve was this—to “go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost.” The instructions He gave to his disciples 2000 years ago remains the charge He gives to his disciples today. Go, teach, and bring people to a knowledge of Jesus Christ and His plan of salvation.
Do you have questions about the purpose of life, the importance of families, or the mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints? Click Here for a good resource: Mormon.org . And, please leave me a comment below!