A Light unto José

A Light unto José

From Chicken Soup for the Latter-day Saint Soul

A Light unto José

For they were set to be a light unto the world, and to be the saviors of men. . . .

D&C 103:9

When I had been a missionary for about a year, my companion and I wanted to show a recent convert part of “How Rare a Possession,” a video that had been released a short time earlier. We had no place to show the movie, so we decided to take Maria to the home of the member family where we lived.

We had just put the video in the VCR when the phone rang. I answered, and the male voice at the other end introduced himself: “Hola, me llamo José . . . (Hello, my name is José.) May I speak with Elder Craig, please?”

”Elder Craig is no longer here. Sister missionaries now live here. Is there something I can help you with?”

I then heard the extraordinary tale of how the Lord’s hand touched a young man and his family.

About a year earlier, José had met two elders who had been tracting in his neighborhood. The elders taught several discussions—and while José and his wife were interested in the teachings, there was no apparent progress toward a commitment on their part. The Book of Mormon remained unopened, the search for truth was halted. This young family stopped receiving the missionaries, but their hunger for truth persisted.

Another set of evangelists eventually approached the couple, and they began a year of fairly intensive Bible study. That study left them still searching for the peace the Lord promised to those who follow His teachings.

Approximately one year after the initial visit from the missionaries, a young salesman knocked on José’s door. The two men talked, and José expressed his surprise at his visitor’s mastery of the Spanish language. The salesman told José that he’d been a Spanish-speaking LDS missionary.

The discussion then turned to the experience José and his wife had trying to find the true church. The young salesman testified to José that he would never find the true church by studying the Bible alone—that he needed to study the Book of Mormon and ask God if what he read was the truth.

I spoke with José on a Tuesday afternoon. He told me, “Hermana, I met this young man Saturday—three days ago. I started reading the Book of Mormon right away. I am only at the end of Mosiah, but I know it is the word of God. I came to church on Sunday, and I was looking for Elder Craig to ask him to baptize me, but I didn’t see him. That’s why I called the phone number he had left me a year ago. I want to be baptized.”

It didn’t take me long to get in touch with Elder Craig— he was due to end his mission two or three weeks later. Elder Craig was allowed to come back to our ward, where he baptized José the following week. He was confirmed a member of the Church and given the gift of the Holy Ghost. José was then ordained a priest, and he baptized his wife.

We tried to find the young salesman to let him know how he blessed José and his family, but nobody seemed to know anything about him. He was truly a light unto that family—a savior of men.

Nadja Pettitt

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