By Paul Wilson
I recently began reading the book, “A Little Book of Ministering” by Kelly Merrill. Kelly is actually a long time friend who I worked with closely in launching his now well established blog, GospelStudy.us.
Out of our friendship I agreed to review this book that he tirelessly wrote in less than 3 weeks. He began creating the book right after President Nelson announced the sunsetting of Home & Visiting teaching. Kelly shared with me that his purpose for the book was, “…to help us become more comfortable with the idea of ministering to, rather than just serving or helping our neighbor.”
To be honest, if it hadn’t been for Kelly’s persistent reminders I don’t think I would have gotten to his book — and I would’ve missed out too. Not only did reading Kelly’s book give me deeper insights into how the Savior wants us to minister, but the powerful Spirit I felt as I read was very real.
As a follower of Kelly’s blog for many years I already knew he had an authentic and powerful voice. Yet, what struck me as I read his book was his ability to truly articulate what I feel President Nelson’s, and ultimately the Savior’s, reasoning for focusing on ministering.
Here are just a few pearls that showcase my point:
“When I pledge my love and devotion to my ministering family it must be a life-long commitment to the welfare of that individual or family. If I don’t do that then I am nothing better than a hired attendant for the True Shepherd’s flock.”
“If we think that ministering is a series of isolated individual events then we have missed the point. Ministering is a way of thinking, feeling, and being.”
“We each have a sacred responsibility to fulfill our covenant obligations in this life. We are all striving to learn to be like our Savior. We each need to be obedient to the commandments and to fulfill the duties of our callings in the Church. As we minister to one another and practice the virtues that make us more pure and holy, we will receive more inspiration and revelation, our relationships will blossom, and our ministries will bear fruits like we cannot now imagine.”
Along with Kelly’s inspired thoughts around ministering, he provides a course of action. Each chapter at the end is broken down into a list form. So, there’s no doubt what we should take from our reading and how we can apply it.
Overall, I was moved by “A Little Book of Ministering,” and I don’t say that lightly. Kelly does a beautiful job capturing the Spirit of ministering and showing how each of us can apply it in our lives. His book furthered my testimony in President Nelson’s revelation and deepened my well on the next steps I need to do live this new inspiration.