Alma continues his evangelistic travels in Alma 8, eventually arriving at the city of Ammonihah. To put it mildly, he is not well received by the people of this city — they “reviled him, and spit upon him, and caused that he should be cast out of their city” (verse 13). However, as Alma is on the road to the next city, an angel appears to him and instructs him to return to Ammonihah to be used to preach repentance and offer the people the opportunity to avoid destruction.
By the time Alma arrives at the city, he is quite hungry, so he asks a man if he can help him out with something to eat. This is not a chance meeting — the man’s name is Amulek, and an angel has instructed him in a vision to be prepared to receive a man of God. As a result, Amulek says to Alma, “Go with me into my house and I will impart unto thee of my food; and I know that thou wilt be a blessing unto me and my house” (Alma 8:20).
Have you ever invited the people of God to your home? If not, you’re missing out on a blessing. Although we can enjoy each other’s company at worship services and other Church activities, we get to know each other best by spending time in each other’s homes. Instead of being just faces in a congregation, our brothers and sisters become real people with their own endearing qualities — as well as their own challenges — that we may have never been aware of had we not spent this type of time together.
Over the years, I’ve been blessed with the opportunity to visit the homes of many brothers and sisters throughout the world, and we’ve had many brothers and sisters visit our home as well. We’ve created lasting memories, as we’ve had the opportunity to:
- Share blessings and experiences from our years of serving God
- Laugh about funny things that have happened to us
- Learn things about each other that we never knew
- Learn things about the Church that we may not have known
- Share prayer needs not typically shared in public Church meetings
- Pray for each other
Perhaps you’re thinking — OK, this sounds great but how do I get started? Especially if you’re new to the Church, you many not feel comfortable just walking up to someone and saying, “Come to my house.”
A good place to start is to invite someone from your congregation to come over for dinner after a Sunday service. This used to be done frequently in the past — especially when people visited different branches of the Church — but unfortunately it doesn’t happen as often anymore. Perhaps you can help revive this practice somewhat.
Opportunities for overnight guests generally exist when people travel to your area for a Church function. Although some may prefer to stay at a hotel, there are many who will appreciate the opportunity to stay at your home. Being able to sit up late at night swapping stories with the brothers and sisters is always a memorable experience.
Admittedly, there is some work involved in preparing your home for a visit. Food needs to be purchased and prepared. Bathrooms may need to be cleaned. Clean sheets may need to be put on beds if the visit will be overnight. However, try not to let the work involved discourage you from having your home prepared to receive visitors. As much as possible, try to be prepared at all times so there is no barrier when the opportunity arises.
In the Alma and Amulek story referenced above, Alma stayed at Amulek’s house for many days, and we can just imagine the things that Alma shared with Amulek, whose life was forever changed. He became a co-worker with Alma and received equivalent power from God as he worked for the Lord. It all started when he said to Alma, “Come to my house.” Try saying the same to people of God today and see how your life is changed.
This article has undergone ministry review and approval.