This week I decided to blog about a Conference address from the most recent Conference, April of this year. In examining the many messages given, I had a hard time choosing one for this post.
But in the end, I think that I selected Elder Amado’s address on the Savior largely because of what we share. Part of my mission I served in Guatemala. A native to that country, Elder Amado has played an instrumental role in establishing the Church in Guatemala. Hearing Elder Amado’s less-than-perfect English brought back memories of many wonderful experiences I had in his homeland.
Arriving in a new country
Elder Amado was president of the Central American Area Presidency when I served my mission. His counselor, Elder Murin, was my mission president for my first two months in the field. How do you get a member of the Area Presidency to be your mission president? I’m not sure of all the ways, but I got it when my mission president died in a horrible plane crash.
The night before I left the MTC I learned what happened but had no details. Two days later, I arrived with my companions in Guatemala City. After passing through customs, we were greeted by the assistants to the president. “We’re here to take you to your mission president’s funeral,” they declared. “Welcome to Guatemala.”
I thought to myself, It’s going to be a long two years.
After piling into the small van just outside the airport, we sped through the streets of Guatemala City like we were in a Nascar race. Welcome to driving in the Third World.
A mission president's funeral
At length we arrived and made our way to a pew in the very back of the chapel. We had just slept on a overnight flight covering some 2500 miles, so we weren’t exactly fully rested. We also needed new clothes, a bath, and a shave. And being greenies, none of us understood a word that was being said.
So it’s little surprise that the back row fell asleep. Though I couldn’t understand a word that was being said, I did understand falling asleep at a memorial service would be disrespectful. I did my best to stay awake. And that was where I saw Elder Amado for the first time.
Words of wisdom
Betrayed by one of His own, He was hurriedly condemned, in a manner both unjust and illegal, in a trial both manipulated and incomplete.
How many of us singles ruminate over past experiences which we consider to be unjust? It wasn’t fair that such and such happened, we tell ourselves. We may or may not be right. That doesn’t matter. What matters is that He who descended below all things experienced injustice of His own. And that experience allows Him to touch us when we need it.
Seeing and hearing Elder Amado speak in Conference was just such an experience for me. The memories brought back from my mission reminded me of how the Savior supported me through many difficult trials. I don’t have time today to share them here, but perhaps another day I will.
What I do need to share with you today is a simple message: God is aware of you, and He will bring to your mind remembrances of His love and support for you in your hour of need. I had that experience watching Elder Amado speak in General Conference. It came when I needed it. Now my hope is that I can give that experience to someone else in the moment when they need it.
Elder Amado closed his address with these words:
I plead that we may serve with joy and dedication and that we may remain faithful to Him until the end.
For me, the messages of Elders Dube and Amado are one and the same. Focus on doing the good that lies before you. By helping others to get what they need, you’ll be receiving what you need. All that then remains is to pass it forward to someone else.
Howdy! I'm Lance, host of Joy in the Journey Radio. I've been blogging about LDS singles life since 2012, and now I produce a weekly radio show to help LDS singles have more joy in their journey and bring all Latter-day Saints together. Let's engage a conversation that will increase the faith of LDS singles and bring singles and marrieds together in a true unity of the faith.
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