Mark Albright is the president of the Washington DC South mission and shares these missionary stories with Meridian Magazine. This letter comes from Elder Eric Sackett.
If you want to share a missionary story, send it to President Albright by clicking on the “email author button” by the title of the article. Please note the names of new converts and investigators may be changed to maintain privacy.
We had been trying to visit a less active single member of our ward named Anthony. The ward council was worried about him, and the bishop assigned us to visit him as part of our ward’s attempt to “rescue” those who might need some help. We knew that we would have to return and report back to the ward council regarding the results of our visit, so we kept trying to find Anthony at home.
Although we could never find him there, we did leave four or five sticky notes on his front door over the course of several weeks. They were just kind little notes to say hello, and that we were thinking about him and wanting to visit with him.
Finally after several weeks with no success at finding him at home, Anthony excitedly called us out of the blue one afternoon to come visit him immediately. He then told us his story. He had been at the top of the world. He had a great job, a girl friend, everything he thought he needed to be happy. Then it all slipped through his fingers. He now had a terrible part-time job, no friends, and was barely scraping along to survive financially. He was confused. He wondered why God would allow so many bad things to happen to him so quickly. He could not understand why he had fallen so far.
These troubling questions led him at first to depression and then to the Capital Beltway, Highway 495, atop a high overpass. He stood there, on the edge looking down at the busy traffic below, contemplating why, why! He was to the edge of his faith and at the edge of the bridge. He told us that as he looked down at the cars speeding by below, he imagined how beautiful it would be to just let the traffic take away all his pain in one quick step. He thought for a while about jumping, but then he remembered something. It was something very small, but very important to him. He remembered the little sticky notes that we had left on his front door. Hope entered his heart once again! Someone did care after all! He quickly moved back to safe ground, got in his car and drove straight home. He then called us to come over to visit him immediately.
Our seemingly small act of writing short notes, insignificant as it may have seemed to us at the time, helped to save a brother’s life. He knew someone cared about him and that we were worried about his welfare. Our actions DO matter! They DO make a difference to others! Anthony ended up returning to church, the bishop provided some much needed assistance, and Anthony’s father also requested a blessing from the elders. I know that everything we do out of love, great or small, makes a real difference in other’s lives. No effort is wasted in this great rescue mission upon which we are embarked. I’m very grateful to the Lord for that knowledge. I LOVE THIS WORK!
Merrily Marching Onward,
Elder Eric Sackett