When Elder José L. Alonso spoke of losing his young son in Mexico city, my heart pounded and tears welled up in my eyes. I don’t know if it was just the mother in me, but hearing of any parent losing a child, whether temporarily, or for this life, evokes a lot of emotion in me. We lost site of our then three year old once in a big box department store, and I can still remember how my heart raced as we ran around the clothing department calling his name. I remember being grateful for the store employees who calmly communicated on their radios the situation, and our son was quickly located.
I appreciated Elder Alonso’s comment that they did not need a planning meeting to go to the rescue of their son. They “simply acted, going out in search of the one who had been lost.” I think that I am often guilty of waiting for instruction to go to the rescue. We recently started attending a new ward, and I want to serve and help people, but I haven’t received a visiting teaching assignment yet. That has been my (quite lame) excuse for not helping or serving more. Why am I waiting to be instructed to go to the rescue? I am sure that I am quite capable of searching out and helping those in need, and I know the Lord will help me in that effort if I actually step forward and go to work. Elder Alonso reminded us that “Each day we have the opportunity to give help and service—doing the right thing at the right time, without delay.” Why do I delay when the opportunities are all around me?
Elder Alson began his talk with this statement, “In our day many people are living in the midst of sadness and great confusion. They are not finding answers to their questions and are unable to meet their needs.” This made me think about times in my life when I have been in the “midst of sadness and great confusion,” feeling lost, and not finding answers to my questions. Thankfully, I have frequently been rescued by the help of wise parents, loving teachers, good friends, and righteous priesthood leaders. In those times, though, feelings of despair often threatened to overcome me. The rescue that I found was not necessarily those good people in themselves – they rescued me by reminding me of the Savior, sharing their testimonies and urging me to rely on Him. Indeed, “true happiness is found in following the example and teachings of Christ.”
Have you been rescued at times in your life? How do you go to the rescue of others? Do you need to be instructed before you go to the rescue? Or do you search and rescue when it is needed, “without delay”?