- I wish to bear you my witness of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, and the power of His infinite, atoning sacrifice. In doing so, I will call upon an experience from my years in Tennessee. One evening there I received a call at home from a gentleman I did not know. He introduced himself as a recently retired minister of another faith and asked to meet with me privately the following Sunday. When we met, my guest stated frankly he had come out of concern for the welfare of my soul. He pulled out of his portfolio a fairly long list of scripture citations from the New Testament and said he wanted to review these verses with me and see if he could help me be saved. I was a bit surprised at his directness, but I could tell that he was sincere, and I was touched by his genuine interest in me. We conversed for more than an hour, and he was open to hear me explain something of my faith as well as to read with me some teachings from the Book of Mormon with which he was not familiar. We found there was much we believed in common and some things we did not. We felt a bond of friendship and prayed together before he left. What remains with me is our discussion about being born again. It is spiritual rebirth through Jesus Christ that is the context of my witness of Him.
He shares with us the fruits of being born again:
- Spiritual rebirth originates with faith in Jesus Christ, by whose grace we are changed.
- When this true faith takes root in a person, it inevitably leads to repentance.
- To be complete, however, repentance requires a covenant of obedience.
- Then, as promised, the Lord baptizes us “with fire and with the Holy Ghost” (3 Nephi 9:20).
He shares with us that this process is not a quick one. It takes time and is the reason we are here on earth.
- Being born again, unlike our physical birth, is more a process than an event. And engaging in that process is the central purpose of mortality.
He concludes giving us some advice:
- Let us not justify ourselves in a casual effort. Let us not be content to retain some disposition to do evil. Let us worthily partake of the sacrament each week and continue to draw upon the Holy Spirit to root out the last vestiges of impurity within us.
I find in my life that I want to make needed changes to be a better disciple of Christ but there are lingering desires to keep ahold one or two of my favorite sins. Elder Christofferson's counsel to not "retain some disposition to do evil" really speaks to me. I need to be fully committed to following the Savior and not just dipping my toes in the water when I should be going for a swim. It is my goal to figure out how I make this change in my life and remove those things that cause me to not be fully committed to following the Savior.