Dear Elders and Sisters,
Several weeks ago I shared some thoughts about what an “ideal day” might look like for a missionary. Many missionaries commented that they were inspired by this letter and felt that it helped them understand how to use time more wisely and prioritize certain activities. I would like to follow up and suggest some additional things that will help you to be diligent, obedient and focused in order to Teach Repentance and Baptize Converts in your area.
For missionaries, all days are not created equally. What days do you consider to be the most important for accomplishing your missionary purpose? I think many of you would agree that Saturday and Sunday are days when people are more likely to be home or have time to meet with you. Over the last three years of observing missionaries who are goal oriented and diligent, I have noted that achieving our goals nearly always comes down to what happens on Saturday and Sunday. Things can sometimes look pretty bleak in the earlier days of the week, but if we persist in faith and don’t lose hope, remarkable and even miraculous things happen on these two days.
Sometimes there are ward or branch activities on Saturdays in which members invite us to participate. Saturday is often the only day that members have time to hold service projects and other fun things. They love the missionaries and enjoy spending time with them. As enticing as these things may be, they take can distract us from accomplishing our most important work of finding those who are prepared to come unto Christ. Just because we have been invited by members to do something does not mean that it is the best use of our time. Members will respect and trust us if we are willing to choose “the harder right” (“Choices,” President Monson, April 2016) as we allocate our time for the various activities in which we participate.
I am concerned about certain activities that sometimes involve large groups of missionaries in our chapels that have several wards, such as baptisms and family home evenings. While these can be very spiritual events and are great opportunities to introduce our investigators to other members, sometimes they can take up an entire block of prime proselyting time. Missionaries who attend baptisms should always have the mission president’s permission if they are travelling from outside the zone. Those who are attending a baptism in their own zone should always have an investigator present if they plan to attend. Those attending FHE or other activity should always have an investigator or RC present. Spending an entire morning, afternoon, or evening at the chapel getting to know members could rob you of that golden investigator you have been praying for.
A missionary commented in an email last week that it is really hard to stay focused all the time. I agree. But you can do it with Heavenly Father's help. As you stay focused, your eyes will be opened to all the prepared people in your area for you to find, teach and baptize. Staying focused also includes working hard to find them. It will take your best effort all day. Every day. Especially Saturday and Sunday.