Why I Follow Jesus

30 11 2011

BY DALE E. LUFFMAN, Council of Twelve Apostles

I still recall with clarity my family gathered around the kitchen table to color, cut, and prepare Book of Mormon flannel-graph figures and scenes. (For those not familiar with flannel-graph technology, it was a precursor to PowerPoint.)

I can still smell the crayons! My father, a convert to the gospel just a month before my birth, had become adept in his knowledge of the Book of Mormon and frequently was asked to teach classes. These classes included flannel-graph presentations. And we were his helpers.

As we cut and colored Lehi and his family, Samuel the Lamanite prophet, and other heroes and characters, my father would relate the Book of Mormon story to us. I felt I was right there with the adventures of the sons of Mosiah. Our family lived these stories. And then relived them as they were taught in the branches and missions of western Oregon and southwest Washington.

The witness of the Book of Mormon was significant in bringing my father into the church. My mother had introduced him to the book. Seventy Arthur “Pete” Gibbs aided my father in discovering the message of the Book of Mormon. And the truth my father found in the book transformed his life!

Over the years the Book of Mormon has continued to present itself to me, exerting its uncanny claim. That claim has been sometimes troublesome, sometimes perplexing. Yet it is an instrument of witness I cannot deny.

Although traditional approaches to understanding the Book of Mormon have for me hampered conversation with the text, I increasingly have found in a 19th-century reading the message of this unique foundational work exerting its claim on me. And at the heart of its message, as I heard it around our kitchen table and in various settings in my life, is its witness of the triune God’s revelation in Jesus Christ and the invitation to “come unto Christ” (Omni 1:46 AV).

The community formed the scriptures so the scriptures might form the community. For me, as a result of my family and the witness of the gospel shared around the kitchen table, the Book of Mormon has contributed to my reasons for following Jesus.




One response

30 11 2011
William RAISER

Delighted to read your testimony. I hear too little of the Book of Mormon, especially from those in leadership. There is much yet to be learned from this book.

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