Asia Area Leader Message

Our Need to Repent

When we choose to repent, we choose to change! We allow the Savior to transform us into the best version of ourselves.

Elder Wisit Khanakham
Elder Wisit Khanakham Of the Seventy

Not long after my baptism, I was assigned to record part of a Thai translation of a filmstrip called “The Restoration,” since there was no advanced technology in those days. A sentence that I had to read was “I am a sinner, I need the Lord.” I had pondered why I was selected to read that line. How did the Lord know what I needed? That sentence echoed in my ears silently. I knew the Lord had chosen me as one who really needed Him. He said, “I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.”1 The Lord further said, “…he awakened them out of a deep sleep, and they awoke unto God.”2 I am one of those now awakened. As time goes by, I realize that repentance is a process of learning, growing and improving. Whenever I look back, I see myself as one who has been changed for the better. President Nelson taught repentance with hope, joy and love, saying, “The word for repentance in the Greek New Testament…means ‘change’…‘mind,’ ‘knowledge,’ ‘spirit,’…. Thus, when Jesus asks you and me to ‘repent,’ He is inviting us to change our mind, our knowledge, our spirit—.... He is asking us to change the way we love, think, serve, spend our time, treat our wives, teach our children,….”3 I feel deep gratitude for Church activities that can be implemented in the home as home-centered and Church-supported gospel learning is emphasized. It helps me run to repentance and not away from it.  Repentance leads me to be converted and produces faith that inspires actions.

I came not to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance.

Luke 5:32

The Scriptures: “Come Follow Me” is the perfect program of daily scripture study that opens my heart to the words of God. “Feast upon the words of Christ; for behold, the words of Christ will tell you all things what ye should do.”4 The doctrine of Christ has never led me to darkness but has turned my heart to the Lord.  

Personal and Family Prayer: Daily prayers soften my heart, allow me to counsel with God, and help me to do good things as prompted by the Spirit. “Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings, and he will direct thee for good.”5

Family Home Evening: Our family enjoys spending time together by singing, praying, sharing the words of God, having fun, eating, and laughing together.

Family History and Temple Work: Finding the names of our ancestors and sending them to the temple for temple ordinances is crucial in our family. It leaves us with a feeling of love and a deeper relationship with our family on both sides of the veil.

Family Council: It is the most effective tool to help our family have better communication, coordination, participation, and understanding towards each other. Everyone can share, “but let one speak at a time and let all listen unto his sayings, that when all have spoken that all may be edified of all, and that every man may have an equal privilege.”6

Our Need to Repent

Watching General Conference: Every talk inspires and reminds me of what I need to change so my actions and thoughts can be in accordance with the will of the Lord. I know our leaders are called of God, and He speaks through them. “…my word shall not pass away, but shall all be fulfilled, whether by mine own voice or by the voice of my servants, it is the same.”7

Keeping God’s Commandments: As a human being, I have room to improve. Keeping His commandments helps me to change my behavior. For example, paying a full tithe makes me less selfish, donating fast offerings helps me to be kind and humble, and keeping the Sabbath day gives me joy.

Magnifying My Callings grants me opportunities to progress spiritually. It is a tender mercy of the Lord that He opens doors for me by giving me various responsibilities. The more that I do, the more faith I have, including a stronger testimony and a more positive attitude. 

Ministering and Missionary Work: I visit those I minister to once a week in person. It helps me better observe the two great commandments: love God and love thy neighbor. 

“When we choose to repent, we choose to change! We allow the Savior to transform us into the best version of ourselves. We choose to grow spiritually and receive joy—the joy of redemption in Him. When we choose to repent, we choose to become more like Jesus Christ!””8 I know the restored gospel is true, Jesus is our Savior, and His Atonement is the source of my hope. Both the Bible and the Book of Mormon are true witnesses of The Lord, Jesus Christ. Joseph Smith was called of God, and Russell M. Nelson is our living prophet. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen. ■



1 Luke 5:32

2 See Alma 5:7

3 Russell M. Nelson, “We can Do Better and Be Better”, General Conference, April 2019

4 See 2 Nephi 32:3

5 See Alma 37:37

6 See D&C 88:122

7 See D&C 1:38

8 Russell M. Nelson, “We Can Do Better and Be Better”, General Conference, April 2019