In 2001 I was very surprised to be called as bishop of our ward. After being in this office for three months, one of my counsellors moved out of the ward, so I needed to replace him. I fasted and prayed for inspiration to know who my new counsellor should be, but I felt inspired to wait. There were many good men in the ward who could have filled the position, but I knew that I should follow the prompting I had received.
One Sunday morning I felt that I should go to the front door of the chapel which looked out onto the street. As I stood there, I saw a family of six approaching. It was a father, a mother, and their four sons. I could tell that they were members of the Church. As I waited to welcome them, I knew that this father was to be my new counsellor. During the morning’s meetings, the Lord confirmed to me that this was the man whom He wanted to serve with me.
I met with the family that morning and arranged to meet with the father during the week. After our meeting, there was no doubt in my mind that he was the one to be called as my counsellor. I phoned my stake president and told him that I had the name of a wonderful man who could be my counsellor. The stake president said that there was no name like that on the records of my ward, but he agreed to meet with the brother. Two weeks later, I had a new counsellor.
This brother and his family were accepted and loved by all the members of the ward, and we enjoyed working together as a bishopric. We were guided by the Spirit and received the inspiration we needed in the decisions we made. I was grateful for the inspiration I had received to wait before calling a new counsellor. I felt grateful that the Lord had chosen someone for me.
Some years later when our stake was split, this counsellor of mine was called as the new stake president, and today he serves as an Area Seventy. I am grateful to have been able to work with him. The Lord works in mysterious ways, but if we follow His instructions, He will assist us as we serve Him. “For by my Spirit will I enlighten them, and by my power will I make known unto them the secrets of my will” (D&C 76: 10).