How does one approach a king with any hope to influence his thinking and behavior? “Being wise, yet harmless” (Alma 18:22), Ammon first becomes a servant to the king and then seeks opportunities for awakening within him an awareness of the power of the Spirit of God. The formula is simple: first a servant, and then a teacher. Missionary work is a “labour of love” (Hebrews 6:10) that is anchored in an attitude of service toward those we teach. Let us become more effective teachers in family, Church, and community by ensuring that our motivation is centered in charity and service—and that we depend fully upon the Lord for guidance. President Ezra Taft Benson stated:
It was while I was on my first mission that I discovered the constant need for dependence on the Lord. I learned through experience that I could not convince another soul to come unto Christ. I learned that one cannot convert another by just quoting scripture. Conversion comes when another is touched by the Spirit of the Lord and receives a witness, independent of the missionary, that what he or she is being taught is true.
I learned that a missionary is only a vessel through whom the Lord can transmit His Spirit. To acquire that Spirit, a missionary must humble himself in prayer and ask our Heavenly Father to use him to touch the hearts of investigators.
The first lesson of missionary work is to be dependent on the Lord for our success. (Come unto Christ [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book, 1983], 95)