This quote from Jesus Christ has caused me to self-examine my motives, attitude, ambitions. priorities, decisions and actions. The Savior said, “ Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven.” (Matthew 18: 3 in the Bible)
How do we Become as a Little Child?
As adults what qualities of a child should we adopt in own lives? “…becometh as a child, submissive, meek humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all the things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict… even as a child doth submit to his father” (Mosiah 3: 19 in the Book of Mormon) In other words, we need to look to our Heavenly Father and Savior for guidance as a child looks to his parents for guidance. As a child tries to emulate and become like his/her parents, we should try to become like our Savior Jesus Christ.
What is Conversion and what are we Converted to?
Conversion in the scriptures refers to being converted to the Savior, his teaching and keeping His commandments (also referred to as born again). “Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out…” (Acts 3: 19 in the Bible) “Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” (John 3: 3 in the Bible)
To ancient people living on the American Continent, the Savior further explains the conversion process. “Marvel not that all mankind, yea, men and women, all nations, kindreds, tongues and people, must be born again; yea, born of God, changed from their carnal and fallen state, to a state of righteousness, being redeemed of God, becoming his sons and daughters; And thus they become new creatures; and unless they do this, they can in nowise inherit the kingdom of God” (Mosiah 27: 25-26 in the Book of Mormon)
How Converted to the Savior are We?
In my own life it is easy to be caught up in the daily challenges and not think about the Savior and the need for Him in my life. If I only think about the Savior when I am at church or while saying a routine prayer or when I am faced with a tragedy in my life, then I am not converted. If I seldom read His words and am not earnestly seeking to keep His commandments, I am not converted. Some have said to me that they have faith and belief in Jesus Christ and that is all that is necessary to be saved. “Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works”. (James 2: 18 in the Bible) The Savior’s arms of mercy are open to us. “Will ye not now return unto me, and repent of your sins, and be converted, that I may heal you? … Behold, mine arm of mercy is extended towards you, and whosoever will come, him will I receive; and blessed are those who come unto me.” (3 Nephi 9: 13-14 in the Book of Mormon)
Once Converted, Help Others to be Converted
Another important scripture on conversion should be considered. The Savior said to the apostle Peter, “But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.” (Luke 22: 32 in the Bible) The apostle James gives further light on helping others to be converted. “Brethren, if any of you do err from the truth, and one convert him; Let him know, that he which converteth the sinner from the error of his way shall save a soul from death and shall hide a multitude of sins.” (James 5: 19 – 20 in the Bible) I am assuming the hiding of a “multitude of sins” refers to the sinner and the one that helped him.
Questions we Should Ask Ourselves
- How interested am I in learning about the Savior’s plan for me? How much do I love the Savior?
- How often do I read the words of the Savior? Do I think about what is written that will help me?
- How often do I think about Heavenly Father and the Savior? Is it only when I am at church?
- Am I more interested in pleasing the Savior than those around me?
- How often do I pray? Is gratitude part of my prayers? Do I pray to make the right choices?
- How hard do I work to be a better person? Do I serve others that have needs?
Is your everyday devotion to God such that you could answer in the positive the question “Could a Jury Convict Me of Being a Christian?” (Beliefnet)