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Finding the Lost Sheep: A Call to Love and Compassion

Today’s inspiration is drawn from “Feed My Sheep” by Elder Ben B. Banks Of the Presidency of the Seventy during October 1999.

The Parable of the Lost Sheep

In the grand narrative of the Bible, Jesus often used parables to teach profound lessons. One such parable that resonates with us even today is the story of the lost sheep. It reminds us of the Lord’s boundless love and His desire to rescue and nurture those who have strayed. This timeless lesson from the Bible, found in Luke 15:1–7, sets the stage for our exploration of Elder Ben B. Banks’ inspiring message in “Feed My Sheep.

The Journey to Milford Sound

Elder Banks begins his message with a captivating personal experience in New Zealand. He recalls a journey to Milford Sound, a picturesque location, where he witnessed a heartwarming act of kindness by a bus driver. This moment serves as a powerful metaphor for the care we should extend to those who have lost their way.

The Parable of the Lost Sheep Revisited

Elder Banks then guides us back to the parable of the lost sheep as told by Jesus. He emphasizes the joy in heaven over one sinner who repents, underscoring the immense value of each individual in the eyes of God.

President Gordon B. Hinckley's Concern

President Gordon B. Hinckley’s deep concern for those who have strayed from the Church is highlighted. He encourages us to reach out with a “rescuing hand” and extend our love to those who may have wandered away.

Understanding the Reasons

Elder Banks challenges us to understand why some members have become less active in the Church. Contrary to the assumption that it’s due to a lack of belief in Church doctrine, research indicates that most less-active members still hold essential beliefs.

Common Reasons for Inactivity

Elder Banks shares common reasons less-active members give for their inactivity. These include feelings of unworthiness, personal or family problems, influence from others, and practical challenges such as work conflicts or transportation issues.

The Path to Returning

Elder Banks also highlights the factors that can inspire less-active members to return to Church activity. These include facing life crises, overcoming personal challenges, the example of loved ones, and the desire for the gospel’s influence in their lives.

Shepherding the Lost Sheep

Elder Banks passionately calls on active members to become caring shepherds. He emphasizes that we must reach out to those who have strayed, just as the bus driver extended kindness to the lost lamb in his story.

Patience, Love, and Non-Judgment

Change takes time, and patience is crucial. Elder Banks advises us to be patient, show genuine love, listen attentively, and avoid judgment when helping those who are less active.

A Plea to the Wanderers

In a heartfelt plea, Elder Banks addresses those who have strayed from the Church. He acknowledges their new associations and lifestyles but urges them to consider the spiritual impact they have on their families, especially their children.

A Return to the Fold

Elder Banks underscores the importance of returning to Church activity and coming unto Christ. He encourages those who have strayed to harmonize their lives with the gospel, emphasizing that this decision is the most significant they can make in this life.

Be the Caring Shepherd

In closing, Elder Banks reminds us of the parable’s profound lesson and the Savior’s love for His lost sheep. He reiterates the importance of fulfilling our prophetic mandate to perfect the Saints, which includes strengthening those who have grown cold in their faith.

Extend Your Love

As we reflect on Elder Banks’ message, let us heed the call to action. Just as the bus driver showed compassion to the lost lamb, let us extend our love, friendship, and support to those who have strayed. In our families, communities, and congregations, let us be the caring shepherds who guide the lost sheep back to the fold.

In doing so, we fulfill the Savior’s command to “Feed my sheep” and contribute to making the world a better place—one soul at a time. Let our love and compassion shine as a beacon of hope for those who seek their way home. Link to the original: Feed My Sheep

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