I would encourage you all to read my article alongside the Ensign article for clarification.
In this story we learn of a young single man (almost in his mid twenties I might add) who had developed a casual friendship with someone of the opposite gender even though they didn’t share the same faith.
The story then goes on to warn us of the dangers of such friendships. While it is important to have acquaintances outside of the church (in order for effective missionary work to occur) when these develop into friendships many problems can arise.
In the article the young man arranges to meet up with his non member friend and justifies to himself that this is not a date. He explains though that as he got closer to the place where they would meet, a voice inside his head said, “You’re supposed to date only people who have high standards.” “This isn’t a date,” he thought. “I’m just getting together with an old friend.” The Spirit repeated the warning, pushing until he realized it was indeed a date and he then began to wonder about his friend’s current lifestyle.
He rationalized that the woman knew he was LDS and justified himself that because of this there wouldn’t be any problems. I would just like to add here that this is exactly how Satan traps us. He makes us think that seeing a non member friend is not harmful….and thus it is that Satan lures many into traps from whence he hopes they will never return.
The young man however followed the promptings of the Spirit and called his friend to cancel. When he got on the phone though he became afraid of offending her (I should note that this yet another of Satan’s lies. He whispers to us that we had better not offend another in order to keep the standards our father in heaven has set for us). The young man doubted how he would be able to explain spiritual impressions to a friend who doesn’t appreciate the mission of the Holy Ghost (are you seeing the hold that Satan is gaining on this young man at this moment? To a stake president it is crystal clear).
Whilst talking on the phone to his friend the young man was not bold enough to tell her that the spirit had whispered to him to stay away from her due to her low moral standards, so he simply made an excuse that he wasn’t comfortable with one of the activities they had planned on. She however slyly offered to meet anyway and do something different. The young man seeing no other option agreed to this. This is why I always advocate being up front with non members from the start. If they want to be friends with us then they can come to a sacrament meeting or church activity. This is the way of safety that the Lord intends for the dual purpose of not only protecting us, but of bringing non members unto Him.
The young man kept feeling intense anxiousness as the spirit continued to warn him of the upcoming danger.
After they met though they ended up having a fun time together (can you see Satan trying to lull him into a false sense of security?). The spirit who is always there to warn us against the forces of Satan would from time to time, tell him that the earlier warning was still important. At first nothing seemed concerning, but as the evening progressed, it became clearer that they were headed in completely different directions. This became undeniably obvious when she ordered a glass of wine! Acting under the influence of the spirit the young man quickly and without hesitation explained that he would not pay for alcohol and that she would have to pay for it herself. As a stake president I commend such action.
As dinner wrapped up, the young man was on the edge of his chair, eager to go. Not only was the young woman likely intoxicated from her glass of wine, but also the evening’s last train was leaving soon and he knew he had to get away from this dangerous situation.
Now, pay close attention to how Satan used this glass of wine to influence the young woman. I will quote from the article; “Aware of my worry, my friend said I could sleep at her place”!!!!
The Spirit knowing that his eternal salvation was at stake would not leave the young man alone and he knew that staying was not an option. But instead of racing to get the last train back the young man walked her to her home where she again had the opportunity to tempt him as she asked “Are you sure you don’t want to stay?”. We know that she wasn’t forward or offensive, but was subtle and discreet. The Spirit quietly spoke more clearly to the young man than even the sound of thunder. The young man knew he could under no circumstances miss that train.
As soon as the young woman was in her house and out of sight he ran as fast as he could to the train station all the while thinking of Joseph in
when he ran from a similar temptation. Egypt
This is where the story ends, but as I mentioned earlier this man is a member of my stake so I will take the liberty of giving you the rest of the story. Ensign readers might leave with the impression that the young man caught the train and made his way home, but this was not the case. On the contrary a concerned policeman seeing him running at top speed stopped him. By the time the young man was able to catch his breath and convince the officer that no crime had taken place he had missed his train. He admitted to me that on several occasions as he lay in the cold cheap motel room that night he thought of the warm bed and company that could have been his had he not been a faithful church member and priesthood holder.
This young man is still single, but I know that the Lord blesses him as he continues to follow the promptings of the spirit in his daily endeavors.