The driver pulled the bus over to the side of the road, turned around in his seat, and replied, “Lady, all I know about the Mormons is that they meet in that red brick building. Is there anyone on this bus who knows anything more about the Mormons?” I waited for someone to respond. I gazed at the expression on each person’s face for some sign of recognition, some desire to comment. Nothing. I realized it was up to me to do as the Apostle Peter suggested, to “be ready always to give an answer to every man that asketh you a reason of the hope that is in you.” I also realized the truth of the adage “When the time for decision arrives, the time for preparation is past.” For the next 15 or so minutes, I had the privilege of sharing with those on the bus my testimony concerning the Church and our beliefs. I was grateful for my testimony and grateful that I was prepared to share it.
I answered the ring of my telephone one evening to hear a voice ask, “Are you related to an Elder Monson who years ago served in the New England Mission?” I answered that such was not the case. The caller introduced himself as a Brother Leonardo Gambardella and then mentioned that an Elder Monson and an Elder Bonner called at his home long ago and bore their personal testimonies to him. He had listened but had done nothing further to apply their teachings. Subsequently he moved to California where, after thirteen years, he again found the truth and was converted and baptized. Brother Gambardella then asked if there were a way he could reach these elders who had first visited with him, that he might express to them his profound gratitude for their testimonies, which had remained with him. I checked the records. I located the elders. Can you imagine their surprise when, now married with families of their own, I telephoned them and told them the good news—even the culmination of their early efforts. They remembered Brother Gambardella and, at my suggestion, telephoned him to extend their congratulations and welcome him into the Church. You can make a difference. Whom the Lord calls, the Lord qualifies. This promise extends not only to missionaries, but also to home teachers, quorum leaders, presidents of branches, and bishops of wards. When we qualify ourselves by our worthiness, when we strive with faith nothing wavering to fulfill the duties appointed to us, when we seek the inspiration of the Almighty in the performance of our responsibilities, we can achieve the miraculous.