Wednesday, February 6, 2013

WhenThou Art Converted

 Becoming Converted, is a topic that I frequently ponder on. I am so grateful for the testimony of Jesus Christ that I have been given, but there are times I wonder if I do enough to strengthen it.

President Harold B. Lee taught: “Testimony isn’t something that you have today and you keep always. Testimony is either going to grow and grow to the brightness of certainty, or it is going to diminish to nothingness, depending upon what we do about it. I say, the testimony that we recapture day by day is the thing that saves us from the pitfalls of the adversary.”
Elder Joseph B Wirthlin talks about the conversion process that the apostle Peter had to undergo:

The night before His crucifixion, Jesus shared the feast of the Passover with His twelve beloved Apostles, most of whom had been with Him throughout His ministry. At one point during this sacred evening, the Lord looked upon Peter, His senior Apostle and loyal friend. Knowing what would be required of Peter after the Ascension, the Lord said: “Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat:

“But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.” (Luke 22:31–32; emphasis added.)

Imagine for a moment that you are Peter. Three years ago a holy stranger invited you to set aside your fishing boat and nets, your means of support for yourself and your family, and then asked you to follow Him. You did so without hesitation, and for three years you have continued to follow and to love and support and sustain Him. You have seen Him confound the wise, comfort the weary and the afflicted, heal the sick, and raise the dead to life. You have seen Him conquer evil spirits, calm the troubled seas, and for a few minutes, at least, you even walked on the water toward Him. You were at His side when Moses and Elias appeared to Him; you saw Him transfigured before your very eyes. You have committed your entire life to Him. And now He questions you by instructing you to strengthen your brethren “when thou art converted.”

Peter was surprised. He assured the Lord, “I am ready to go with thee, both into prison, and to death.” (Luke 22:33.) But Jesus knew and understood. He was not condemning Peter for a lack of conviction; Peter demonstrated his conviction during the Lord’s arrest. Rather, the Savior was telling Peter what he needed to do when his testimony became more secure. 

"How can you become converted? How can you make the gospel of Jesus Christ not just an influence in your life but the controlling influence and, indeed, the very core of what you are?"
Elder Todd B Christofferson answers his own questions with this counsel:

1.  Beware of Pride.

2. Know what the Gospel is and grow to understand it more fully.

3. Pray. "Pray about your hopes and fears, your friends and family, your school and work, and the needs of those around you. Most of all, you should pray to be filled with the love of Christ. This love is given to those who are true followers of Jesus Christ, who ask for it with all the energy of their heart."

4. Serve Others. "To be converted, you must not only open your heart to a knowledge of the gospel and the love of God, you must practice the gospel law. You cannot fully understand or appreciate it unless you personally apply it in your life."

5. "Offer the Lord the gift of your broken, or repentant, heart and your contrite, or obedient, spirit."

I am grateful that the Lord provides for me so many opportunities to be humble and become converted unto Him and His Gospel. I pray that we each follow the counsels of our church leaders and become truly converted.




  1. I like how the first item in the list by Elder Christofferson is to 'beware of pride'. Reminded me of the talk given by Pres. Benson. A couple things that stand out to me from the talk are: "Pride is a very misunderstood sin, and many are sinning in ignorance." He then goes on to define what pride is. "The proud make every man their adversary by pitting their intellects, opinions, works, wealth, talents, or any other worldly measuring device against others. In the words of C. S. Lewis: 'Pride gets no pleasure out of having something, only out of having more of it than the next man. … It is the comparison that makes you proud: the pleasure of being above the rest. Once the element of competition has gone, pride has gone.' (Mere Christianity, New York: Macmillan, 1952, pp. 109–10.)" We have the pride of one person comparing them selves and wanting to lift themselves above others and there is also the pride towards God or those that have authority from God. "The proud cannot accept the authority of God giving direction to their lives." I struggle from time to time with pride and find that it is less of a temptation for me when I am striving to serve others.

  2. Yes, President Benson's talk is a very memorable one. It is easy to sometimes get caught up in that competitive spirit, and so much harder to humble yourself before God. I found a really great talk by Elder Marlin K Jensen that addresses the topic of humility found here: "When you think you have humility, you don't."

    Here's a link to President Benson's talk on pride as well.