It’s week 6 of general conference book club, and we’ll be studying Elder Nelson’s talk from the Saturday A.M. session:
Ask the Missionaries! They Can Help You!
By Elder Russell M. Nelson
Elder Nelson repeated the phrase that is the title of his talk so many times that all of my children started paying attention. Every time he started building up to it, my son Clark would say, “Oh no, not again!,” and then Elder Nelson would say again: “Ask the missionaries. They can help you.” Even now, they remember that specific phrase from conference, so it was definitely memorable.
I thought this was a fun talk in context of the big announcement about the new age requirements for missionary service. We were all already missionary-minded, knowing that we have to get to work to get our children prepared sooner for missionary service, and then Elder Nelson’s talk reinforced why that is so important.
He presented a long list of knowledge and services that missionaries can provide for those searching for truth. I think that list makes a good curriculum for our at-home pre-MTC efforts. At the same time, there are plenty of things he mentioned that I probably couldn’t have helped people with when I was a missionary, which brought to mind two thoughts: 1) They’ve definitely raised the bar, and 2) Missionaries welcome any kind of sincere questions, whether they know all the answers or not. They can always point people in the right direction. (For example, I couldn’t have answered questions about how to find your ancestors, but I could have hooked you up with Stake specialists who could help you.)
Also, I know this wasn’t the point of his talk, but I really love the Preach My Gospel manual that missionaries study and teach. I think if we use that as the curriculum to prepare our own children for future missionary service, they will be remarkably up for the task.
I love missionaries and missionary work. I cannot think of my own time as a missionary without being filled with gratitude for all I learned and felt as the Lord let me serve. I’m so excited for this rising generation and the opportunity they will have to join a royal army and go forth and do amazing things as the Lord is hastening His work.
You may have noticed completely different things as you studied this talk. Please share in the comments below some of the things you learned and felt.
(A reminder to those of you who are new to General Conference Book Club: You’re welcome to return to this post any time this week and leave your comment and thoughts in the comment section below. You may also want to see what others are saying about the talk and engage in a conversation for mutual understanding and encouragement. A new talk will be posted each Sunday and will be studied and discussed throughout the week.)