June 9, 2014
Well hey there everyone!
Soooo, this week wasn’t very exciting. This area is moving pretty slowly – we taught a total of three lessons, two of which were to recent converts. We’re still working hard to find new investigators, but to no avail… YET. I’m pretty sure this is Heavenly Father testing our patience, faith, diligence, obedience… just about everything. So we’re trying hard to be exactly obedient and keep the faith, which then leads to everything else falling into place. And when that happens… Oh boy are we in for a treat! 😀 Also, we’ve been able to get to know members a lot more and so far, it’s been really awesome! I love doing Family Home Evenings with them. Those are truly inspired by God, I know it! 🙂
I’m going to make this a short email. My companion, Sister Hall, isn’t feeling well, so I’m just going to share a few thoughts from my personal study this week and then we’ll get her home and resting.
My study of the Book of Mormon this week was great! I read 1 Nephi 17 and 18 and had some neat experiences and realizations. First of all, in 1 Nephi 17, Nephi is instructed by God to build a ship so they can travel across the ocean to the Promised Land. His brothers, Laman and Lemuel, are giving him a bunch of grief, as usual. They want to kill him and do their own thing because who is Nephi, their younger brother, that he can claim revelation from God and build a ship? But Nephi stands up against them and gives them examples of when the Lord has blessed people with the knowledge or means they need to accomplish His will – Moses and the Hebrews leaving Egypt is one example. He says in verse 50-51:
“If God had commanded me to do all things I could do them. If he should command me that I should say unto this water, be thou earth, it should be earth; and if I should say it, it would be done. And now, if the Lord has such great power, and has wrought so many miracles among the children of men, how is it that he cannot instruct me, that I should build a ship?”
Whoa! Nephi has such amazing faith – it made me think about my own faith and how I can strengthen it. I also had the thought of Philippians 4:13 – I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me – and Acts 10:34 – God is no respecter of persons.
God can do what He wants. He can give power to whoever He pleases. And He is going to provide a way for those that He gives commandments to so that they can accomplish the things which He commands them to do (1 Nephi 3:7).
One more thing from 1 Nephi 18. Nephi’s brothers had tied him up and were partying and being wicked while on the ship across the ocean. Because of their wickedness, there was a great storm that almost tossed them all into the depths of the sea. Finally, his brothers release him and he says in verse 16 after talking about how sore his wrists and ankles were from being tied up:
“Nevertheless, I did look unto my God, and I did praise him all the day long; and I did not murmur against the Lord because of mine afflictions.”
That is yet another amazing example of Nephi’s faith in the Lord. And I want so badly to be able to have such great faith as that. So my challenge to you this week is to study the materials you have – scriptures, mormon.org, lds.org,mormonchannel.org, church magazines, etc – to study up on faith and what you can do to strengthen your own to become like Nephi and other prophets in the Bible and Book of Mormon, or even examples of people with wonderful faith from your own lives. Do what you can to study it, then pray about it, ponder it, and apply it. You will be blessed greatly as you strive to come closer to your Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. You will find great happiness and joy and you will come to know without even the slightest sliver of doubt that He is your Savior and Redeemer. That you are a son or daughter of our Father in Heaven. And that you have the potential to become perfect like them (Matthew 5:48, 3 Nephi 12:48) and to “inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.” (Matthew 25:34).
It’s true, all of it. I know it and I will never deny it.
Have a fabulous week everyone! 🙂