There was once a very old man who had worked very hard throughout his life for everything he owned—the comforts his family enjoyed. He knew his days were short, so he wanted his company—a business he nurtured his entire life—to be passed on.
Beware the temptation to retreat from a good thing. If it was right when you prayed about it and trusted it and lived for it, it is right now.
I will tell you of an experience I had before I was a General Authority which affected me profoundly. I sat on a plane next to a professed atheist who pressed his disbelief in God so urgently that I bore my testimony to him. "You are wrong," I said, "there is a God. I know He lives!"
I earnestly seek an interest in your faith and prayers as I strive to bring forth light on this Book of Mormon message—the sin of pride. This message has been weighing heavily on my soul for some time. I know the Lord wants this message delivered now.
At the first of my mission, I must admit, I was somewhat less than enthusiastic about tracting and street contacting. I had always been rather shy, and the thought of approaching complete strangers about the Gospel terrified me. I was willing to teach them, but let someone else go find them. It wasn't long before I decided that I must surely hate door-knocking more than any other missionary in the mission. I even remember faking ringing the doorbell when it was my door a couple of times.
My young friends of the Aaronic Priesthood and you trainers of this great army of Christ, the principle of work has been taught from the foundation of the world. It is the bottom line of any forward motion of success. The frightening disappearance of work as a part of our basic ethic is alarming.
The train was crowded, so I stood by the door and gazed out the window. It was hot, and the scorched Apennine Mountains seemed dry, brown, and uninteresting. "You'll love the Apennines," said a man selling oranges at the station. Impressive or not, they weren't foremost on my mind. I was a new zone leader, and I wanted to baptize.
What I shall say I could say much better if we were alone, just the two of us. It would be easier also if we had come to know one another, and had that kind of trust which makes it possible to talk of serious, even sacred things.
I'll never forget that day in the mission field when I received my last transfer. I knew it was coming. The president had indicated there would be changes in the mission leadership, and I imagined all along that I would be called to serve the last six months of my mission as a zone leader. I was excited about the prospects.
If there are problems in the mission that you can give me light on so that I can help your president and help you, that's what I'd like. If there are situations that are difficult, if there are problems that are unknown—let me give you one example.