Well hi everyone! I hope all of your week’s have been going well and great things have happened! Any missionary experiences to share? I hope so!
This week was pretty awesome. We found a new investigator, John (70), who used to be taught a couple of different times by elders and sisters. We were kind of put out by his teaching record because there was a lot on there that said he’s not willing to change, he doesn’t even want to pray, doesn’t want to quite smoking, etc, etc. But when we got there, we had a kind of pleasant surprise. I say kind of because it was also quite sad. So, he and his roommate are HEAVY smokers. The room was hazy and we came out of it with EVERYTHING smelling like smoke. It was really bad. But lately, our zone has been working to ask more questions as we teach, and so far, that lesson was probably the one I’ve done the best with. We asked him who he was, how he defined himself. He said “Alcoholic”. That was so sad. I hate seeing how much addictions tear people up, but I love to see the hope that comes into their eyes when we tell them we can help them. He cried as he told us that he wants so badly to stop drinking and he wants to change. We shared the story of Alma the Younger with him and tried to help him see we have something that will help him. He told us that he’s envious of those that believe in God and he wants to be like them, but he’s a big skeptic. As we talked with him more, we told him that we want to help him, to which he was very confused. We explained to him it’s because of God’s love for him. Wow. The Spirit was so strong and there was so much hope that came into his eyes when we said we knew someone who loved him, someone who always would, no matter what choices he made. He wants to know it so much. He’s just got to find faith and humility. We assigned him Alma 32 (about faith and humility) to read. I’m praying so hard that he finds it in him to have more than just the desire to change. I’ve got high hopes for him, and I can see such great potential in him! That man is amazing and I’m SO glad we can have experiences like that. 🙂
Another lesson we had, yesterday, with Brenda was fantastic! We had dinner with her and Bertha (the member that introduced us) – homemade corn chowder, garlic bread, cottage cheese, and for dessert: homemade butterscotch pudding. SO TASTY. I’m gonna have to get the recipes for them. Oh man. My mouth’s watering just thinking of it. Mmm! Anyway, we started off talking about prophets, and kind of ended up going backwards through the Restoration lesson (don’t try that by the way. It works WAY better if you teach it from the beginning). But she found the whole thing really interesting and wants to read the Book of Mormon to find out more! I am SUPER excited to keep teaching her! She’s got amazing questions and really thinks about what we say. I can’t explain it more than that. The Spirit was there and it was just awesome!
Alrighty. So Saturday night was the General Women’s Meeting for the whole church. WOWEE was it amazing! The two things I got out of it: Making and keeping our covenants is extremely important and we need to make sure we do everything we can to make sure it stays at the top of our list, and that we need to stop judging each other, stop looking at the differences and see the similarities because we are ALL children of God and He loves each of us equally. We need to follow that example. A couple of things I wrote down from that meeting:
Sister Bonnie L. Oscarson: General Young Women President
Sister Holland was quoted and she said basically that “we can’t continue being Christians if we keep judging each other and ourselves. There is SO much to learn from one another that goes unlearned when we are only thinking of ourselves.” (that’s definitely not an exact quote)
“There is no age limit when showing Christ-like love and service” – there needs to be a connection between Young Women and Relief Society. We’re all sisters!
“It’s good to love each other more, but it’s best to love each other better”
Sister Linda K. Burton: General Relief Society President
In the story of the rich young man in the Bible, Jesus tells the young man that if he wants to be perfect, he needs to keep the commandments and serve others. The definition of the word perfect in this story is not the definition we’ve come to know it as – it doesn’t mean that we can’t have any faults and everything we do is exactly the way it needs to be. Perfect means complete.
“All the easy things that the church has needed to do have been done. You were sent to earth at this time because of your potential and because of what you’ve been prepared to do.”
“You have something to give. Give it with only the thought of sharing God’s love. Not for your own gain.”
President Henry B. Eyring: First Counselor in the First Presidency
“You were tutored by God. He helped you understand what you would go through and what His plan is for you. It is your choice to make and keep His covenants.”
“He sees not only what you are, but what you can become.”
“He expects you to treat every person you meet as a child of God.”
“Eve helped her family to see the path Home. Each of us as women has the same potential Eve had. You have her example to follow. Eve was sure that if she kept her covenants, the Savior would help and support them.”
“Trust in the Lord – Proverbs 3:5-6
WOWZERS! SUCH an amazing meeting! I encourage each of you women to go to lds.org and watch it! Also, General Conference is this coming weekend. There are four general sessions (10-12, 2-4 (MST) both Saturday and Sunday) and a general Priesthood (men) session at 6PM. PLEASE watch at least one session! Conference weekend is the best weekend of the year and I love every minute of it! Take a question with you and you’ll have it answered through the prophet, one of his counselors, or an apostle of the Lord. This conference that happens once every six months is Jesus Christ’s conference. HE is the one speaking to us through his servants, the prophets (Amos 3:7, Old Testament). It really is such an amazing time of the year! 🙂
Plan of Salvation Part 2:
Last week we talked about the Creation and the Fall (Adam and Eve). I hope you all were able to study Genesis 1-3! They’re good ones. If not, you can still study it!
This week, I wanted to focus more on why we’re here on Earth. There are two parts to it, so we’ll see if I can get to both today. I might have to save the second part for next week.
So. Why are you here? What is your purpose in life? What is God’s plan for you to do here on Earth? Well, I can’t tell you individually what you’re supposed to do – that’s between you and God. But I can tell you generally why all of us is here!
Alma 34:32 (page 295 of the Book of Mormon) says “For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of this life is the day for men to perform their labors.” While teaching this concept once, we used the analogy of a job interview. There’s a job that you absolutely would LOVE to have. It’s your dream job, has all the benefits you want/need. It would be extremely beneficial and helpful to your family and it’s something you’ve ALWAYS wanted to do. But only a select few will get the job. What do you do to prepare for that job interview? You’ve only got one shot to be interviewed. But the interview isn’t for a few weeks, so you have time to prepare for it. You would plan what to wear, how to look – generally, how to present yourself well. You would also make sure your resume was up to par and impressive so the interviewer would know what great things you’ve done to help your community, what experience you have, what your interests are, etc. What else would you do to prepare?
Now apply that to your own life. The interview is the final judgment with God. How are YOU preparing to be interviewed for eternal life? What things are you doing to make sure your resume is up to par and impressive? What good works are you doing? What desires do you have? What are you doing to become better each day so that when you stand in front of God, you know you’ve done everything you can to be the best you can be?
The next verses in the chapter, Alma 34:33-34 say “And now, as I said unto you before, as ye have had so many witnesses, therefore, I beseech of you that ye do not procrastinate (Job 27:8) the day of your repentance until the end; for after this day of life, which is given us to prepare for eternity, behold, if we do not improve our time while in this life, then cometh the night (John 9:4) of darkness wherein there can be no labor performed. Ye cannot say, when ye are brought to that awful crisis, that I will repent, that I will return to my God. Nay, ye cannot say this; for that same spirit which doth possess (Romans 6:16, Matthew 6:24) your bodies at the time that ye go out of this life, that same spirit will have power to possess your body in that eternal world.”
What happens if you procrastinate preparing for an interview, or don’t even prepare at all? You might show up late, disheveled looking, having no idea what to do or say. You might not even know everything the job entails. So, what happens if you procrastinate preparing for your interview with Heavenly Father?
That’s what I’d like you to think about this week. The questions I’ve asked – ponder them, really take the time to think about what you’re doing to prepare. What are some things you need to change? Search the scriptures for ideas and help. Turn to the Lord. Ask Him what He would have you do. We don’t know when the day will come to be judged, but it’s getting closer and there’s less and less time to change and prepare. We need to do it now. We need to be better now. And we can do it!
I’m just about out of time, so next week I’ll do the second part of this: How to prepare.
Thank you, each of you, for all you do. I’m grateful for your love and support and I’m so blessed to know you! Have a wonderful week and remember to turn to the Lord for anything and He will answer you! (James 1:5)