August 25, 2014
Oh boy, oh boy! It’s another week gone! YIKES!
So this week was even better than last! Mostly due to my progression, my studies and my awesome companion! Sister Crook is as great as ever! She is hilarious and we have so much fun together! It’s been a while since I’ve laughed so hard! You may now be wondering if I know any other punctuation besides an exclamation point, but if you were companions with Sister Crook, I’m pretty sure you’d be using them as much as me! HOORAY!
So here are some of the highlights from the week:
On Monday…. Whoo boy! We had dinner at a member, Sister Howes. Dinner wasn’t quite ready, and she has a beautiful piano, so she told me to play. I found some classical music in a book and played some Beethoven, Chopin, and Dvorak. Oh ho! It was soooo relaxing. It’s always a treat to be able to play like that every once in a while!
Tuesday we say the Smith’s – Sue, Sam and Nick. We had dinner with them (Chicken Cordon Bleu… MMMMMMM) and a lesson on the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I just love their excitement to learn new things! And they LOVE to do anything we invite them to do – reading scriptures, praying, church, and even a baptismal date on September 20!!!!! Sam is the only one who has actually committed to that day. Nick is a little hesitant (we think because he’s afraid of water) and Sue is still praying and looking for more confirmation on what to do. But they are SO wonderful! I love teaching them because they just want to know everything so they ask TONS of questions! It’s great!
On Wednesday at Book of Mormon study, Sister Crook was telling stories of when she was growing up on their dairy farm. Lots of hilarious cow stories! She’s a hoot! And on the way home, we were practicing making Pterodactyl noises… Inside joke, I guess?
So we’ve been really focusing on inviting as many people as possible to learn about the gospel. We know what we have to share and all we can do is invite. If they don’t want to learn about the greatest, most amazingly fulfilling and fabulous news in the history of eternity, then that’s their choice and their loss. So this week, we got a total of 27 ITLs (invites to learn). And that was pretty much starting at Wednesday. This week, our goal is… wait for it…. 47 ITLs!!!! Aw yeah, we’re SO excited to do it! Because we WILL get it done!
Saturday, we were eating lunch and Sister Crook looks over, across the street at a couple people doing some yardwork at the Methodist church. In true Sister Crook fashion, she says: “We should go help them.” While I’m thinking, while my stomach is yelling: “Let me eat my lunch!” Luckily, she didn’t mean right at that very moment, because she had a loud grumbly stomach, too. Once we’d satisfied our stomachs to keep them from cannibalism, we walk on over across the street and approach these wonderful people. We said: “Hey! We were just enjoying our lunch and saw you working. We want to help!” The lady did NOT look happy, but her husband seemed happy to have help. She said “You’re not dressed for it, so thank you but no.” “Well, we actually have jeans and t-shirts in our car that we can change into. We love to do service!” She still didn’t look happy. She said “For a Methodist church?” “Of course! We’re not allowed to proselyte at other churches. We just want to help you!” That calmed her down a bit and she agreed. She turned out to be wicked nice and actually knows a couple of the members here! She and her husband really appreciated our help with weeding and mulching. And Sister Crook and I just loved it! I really love to do service and bring a lot of joy to other people! 😀
On Sunday, we had an amazingly edifying Gospel Principles class about the Priesthood. The Priesthood is one of my FAVORITE subjects to talk about! So this class was just… oh boy. I LOVED it. I won’t go into what we talked about only because I’m running low on time. Maybe another day! 🙂
We also had a fantastic dinner that evening with the Amundsen family. That baby… He is six months old, has the BIGGEST blue eyes and makes Pterodactyl noises. The same ones, in fact, that Sister Crook and I had been practicing! I guess I’ll have to explain this a bit. Go back to… April I think it was. Elder Crane and Elder Smith. We were deciding what animal Elder Smith looks like and I said he looks like that one dinosaur on the Land Before Time – Duckie. We thought she was a Pterodactyl, so that’s what we said and Elder Smith just randomly opens his mouth and makes this odd screaching sound that seems to fit what a Pterodactyl might sound like. Then Elder Crane.. Well it was just hilarious watching him try to make that sound, among others. So anyway, this sound is one that Elder Hansen hates, especially over the phone. So sometimes, people would just do it to watch his reaction. Well, Elder Hansen is in my district once again, so… we’re doing it again. It’s pretty funny. I can’t make this sound very well at all, but the sound I do make sounds like a tiny baby pterodactyl… Which is what the Amundsen’s baby sounds like. Now I want to get a video of him. It’s so wonderful! Haha!
Okay. Now for me to share some of my wonderful insights on what I’ve learned this week! It goes along really well with last week’s letter that talked about truth. I guess I just really love it! Why? Well… That seems kind of an obvious answer to me – truth is truth! It never changes and that’s just the way that it is! Nobody can say that truth is wrong, because it isn’t! So why argue? So this week, I was studying from 2 Nephi 11, and this is when Jacob, Nephi’s brother, is about to start quoting Isaiah. His words are pretty much mine:
“Behold, my soul delighteth in proving unto my people the truth of the coming of Christ…And also my soul delighteth in the covenants of the Lord which he hath made to our fathers; yea, my soul delighteth in his grace, and in his justice, and power, and mercy in the great and eternal plan of deliverance from death. And my soul delighteth in proving unto my people that save Christ should come all men must perish. For if there be no Christ there be no God; and if there be no God we are not, for there could have been no creation. But there is a God, and he is Christ, and he cometh in the fulness of his own time.”
I LOVE to show people the truth – I love to figure out how everything works and fits together, and then to show people what I’ve come to know! If you come to know something is true, how could you not love it? When you really understand that that’s the way it is and there’s nothing more to it than that, how could you not love truth?
The end of this passage reminds me of another one, earlier in 2 Nephi. It’s in chapter 2, right before Lehi starts talking about the Creation and Adam and Eve. He says: “And if ye shall say there is no law, ye shall also say there is no sin. IF ye shall say there is no sin, ye shall also say there is no righteousness. And if there be no righteousness nor happiness there be no punishment nor misery. And if these things are not there is no God. And if there is no God we are not, neither the earth; for there could have been no creation of things, neither to act nor to be acted upon; wherefore, all things must have vanished away.”
How true that is! If you look around at everything, there’s just so many beautiful things in nature that are put together so perfectly. There’s just no way they could have suddenly came into existence, or even evolved to such perfectness. Being in New England has really helped me see that more clearly. It’s really amazing! 🙂
There are two more verses from 2 Nephi I want to share before my time is up:
2 Nephi 33:1 says:
“I glory in plainness; I glory in truth; I glory in my Jesus for he hath redeemed my soul from hell.”
2 Nephi 31:3:
“For my soul delighteth in plainness; for after this manner doth the Lord God work among the children of men. For the Lord God giveth light unto the understanding; for he speaketh unto men according to their language, unto their understanding.”
I love the truth. I love when it is plain and easy to understand. I love the Book of Mormon for that reason – the Bible is wonderful and it is the word of God. But a lot of it has SO hard to understand what it means, even if you’ve studied the Bible for YEARS. There are so many different interpretations of it that it’s difficult to find the FULL truth. There are most DEFINITELY truths in it, but since there are so many interpretations, things have been lost over time. When you put the Book of Mormon together with it, it is so much more clear. The Book of Mormon truly testifies of Jesus Christ and supports the Bible in every way. It helps us to understand better what the essential doctrine needed to return to Heavenly Father is. If you love the Bible, you will love the Book of Mormon. If you’ve never read it, what have you heard about it? What have you said about it? How do you know it’s TRUE if you’ve never read it?
My challenge this week is specifically for those who have never read the Book of Mormon, and believe the Bible to be the word of God. This challenge: Read the Book of Mormon. If you know the Bible to be the word of God, I testify to you that you will come to know that the Book of Mormon is the truth – it is also the word of God. The two go together, never one by itself. Matthew 18:16 says:
“But if hewill not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses EVERY word may be established.”
“For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.”
The Bible is one, the Book of Mormon is two. They both testify of Christ. They both teach His doctrine. TOGETHER, they establish the word of God.
I know this to be true, and I know that this knowledge can bless your life. So I challenge you to search for truth. Especially in the Book of Mormon so that you can know of a surety that it does go with the Bible. 🙂
Once you’ve done that, don’t forget to send me your testimony for my birthday!
I love this Gospel. I love this Work. I love my Father in Heaven.
Thank you for all your faith!