July 22, 2014
Well hey everyone!
I sure hope the week has been great for you all and that you’re ready for this coming one! It’s gonna be a great one, I can feel it!
This week, for me, was amazing. Every day, I look back at what I’ve learned and realize just how wonderful Heavenly Father is to allow me to grow from one end of the spectrum to the other in such a short amount of time… Every day. So basically, the spectrum of learning is never ending (which is the best thing EVER). Because, like I said, I look back every day and I’m able to see so many awesome changes in myself. I love it. Some of the things I learned this week:
First: It’s okay to have a personality that doesn’t need to change every single aspect to be perfect. With some companions, I’ve felt like I have to completely change everything about myself in order to be a better person. I’m really good at seeing what I’m doing wrong and looking at ways that I can improve instead of blaming the other person. That’s a good quality to have… to a point. When you’re constantly feeling like your best isn’t good enough, or that “If I could just be able to have more patience, or more charity, or whatever”, life, especially as a missionary, just gets way harder and more stressful than it needs to be. So I learned during a good talk with Sister Spangler, that I am myself. I’m not perfect, but who I am doesn’t need to change in order to become such. Last week, we were talking about how one person we’ve met believes that religion is an evolution type of thing – man was put here and didn’t know what to do or how to explain things, so they made up God(s) to explain the weather, or the plants, or whatever else. The day after we were talking about that, I read a verse in the Book of Mormon – Mormon 9:9, which says: “God is the same yesterday, today and forever, and in him there is no variableness neither shadow of changing.” Which got me thinking: There are no changes or variables to the doctrine and principles of the Gospel and God’s law. The changes we see are due to man – man can’t live up to God’s expectation, but God loves His children and so gives us baby steps that lead us towards being able to achieve His complete commandments. The Gospel doesn’t change, but the details will, according to the righteousness and willingness of man. This then led me to think “TRUTH doesn’t change, nor does it evolve. Ever. But little by little, we are given more truths that only add to the doctrine and principles. Those changes, adaptations, what have you, are simply building on what truths we had before – they aren’t separate or different. Another scripture in the Book of Mormon (2 Nephi 28:30, see also Isaiah 28:13) says: “For behold, thus saith the Lord God: I will give unto the children of men line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little; and blessed are those who hearken unto my precepts, and lend an ear unto my counsel, for they shall learn wisdom; for unto him that receiveth I will give more; and from them that shall be taken away even that which they have.”
We are given knowledge little by little – it’s like learning math. You have to learn to add before you can learn how to do calculus. Seriously. The Gospel is the exact same way. Without learning the basics, you can’t understand it all.
Second thing I learned: The temple is a place I never want to leave. This morning, I was able to go and be reminded of the covenants I’ve made with my Father in Heaven and feel of His love and awareness. I felt of the love my brother, Tyler has for me, and I know that he is proud of the work I’m doing. As long as I always follow in the footsteps of my Savior, Jesus Christ, and do as He would do, I know that I’m doing alright and fulfilling the covenants I’ve made. Tyler was and is an amazing example to me. I know I’ll see him again and I know that he’s doing the Lord’s work on the other side, too. Our loved ones who have passed on, those we knew and those who lived hundreds of years previously to our coming to the Earth, are behind us – they strengthen us and love us and support us when we need it most. Best of all, though, is the fact that we also have a Savior and a Heavenly Father who love us and strengthen us. They know we’re trying. They know what we’re dealing with.
I have to go today, but these are the simple truths I learned this week. I love the Gospel. I love my Savior. I love my family and I love who I am and who I can become.
My challenge for you this week: Go to a quiet place where you can feel the Spirit and know of God’s love for you. What is He telling you? How is He comforting you and strengthening you each day? Write it down. Don’t forget. He is ALWAYS there.
Have a great week! 🙂