The following is excerpted from LDS Living. To read the full article, CLICK HERE.

Fifty years before the writing of these words, I was preparing to serve as a full-time missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Having begun my mission on October 24, 1970, and following language training, I arrived in Paris, France, on the twenty-ninth of December.

Since my call to serve as a young missionary, more than 1,300,000 missionaries have been called and set apart to bear witness of the Savior, Jesus Christ, throughout the world, to share the message of His restored gospel, and to gather Israel in preparation for the Second Coming of Jesus Christ. This is the greatest cause upon the face of the earth. The Lord told John Whitmer, an early missionary, “And now, behold, I say unto you, that the thing which will be of the most worth unto you will be to declare repentance unto this people, that you may bring souls unto me, that you may rest with them in the kingdom of my Father.”

Although the world has changed dramatically in the past fifty years, your preparation for your mission is probably quite similar to my preparation.

The Lord provided the qualifications for missionaries:

“Therefore, O ye that embark in the service of God, see that ye serve him with all your heart, might, mind and strength, that ye may stand blameless before God at the last day. Therefore, if ye have desires to serve God ye are called to the work; For behold the field is white already to harvest; and lo, he that thrusteth in his sickle with his might, the same layeth up in store that he perisheth not, but bringeth salvation to his soul; And faith, hope, charity and love, with an eye single to the glory of God, qualify him for the work. Remember faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, brotherly kindness, godliness, charity, humility, diligence. Ask, and ye shall receive; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.”2

Like so many others who have prepared to serve, I wanted to strengthen my faith in the Savior, to refine my spirit, and to be even more careful in my behavior, my language, and my thoughts so that I could truly be the Lord’s representative.

To read the full article, CLICK HERE.