Dear Family,Why do we do the things we do? Why do we go to church, or pray, or read from the scriptures? Why do we choose to do a kind deed or to hold our tongue when we could say an unkind word? And why do we repent and decide to do better when we maybe aren't so kind or good on any given day? I believe it's because of our faith-faith in Jesus Christ, faith in the power of His Atonement, faith that our Heavenly Father will keep His promises to us as we strive to keep the commandments and live as our Savior lived. Please, never ever ever give up on faith. I see on a daily basis what happens to mankind as they lose faith in their Savior Jesus Christ, and so do you! We all can see what happens as the world continually loses faith in God and moves toward a more carnal and unhappy state. I am so grateful for the hope that we have in Jesus Christ. This knowledge gives me strength to keep moving forward every day, to keep beliveng that I can be better than I am, and to believe that same thing for others. And I want to specifically point out that the adversary (Satan), does not want us to have that faith, especially not in the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ. We know that moments before faithful young Joseph prayed to know which church to join and was told to join none of them, that none of them contained the fulness of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the adversary tried to stop Him from praying, attacking his faith. I have seen how the adversary is doing that today in the hearts of God's children and it is discouraging! But I want to promise you that I know the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ really happened, that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God and that the Book of Mormon is true. How do I know this? Not by my own understanding-my mortal brain doesn't have the capacity! But by the Spirit! What a marvelous gift our Heavenly Father has given us!
1Cor. 2: 9 "But as it is written Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which Godhath bprepared for them that love him.
10 But God hath arevealed them unto us by his bSpirit: for the cSpirit dsearcheth all things, yea, the deep things of God.
11 For what man aknoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God bknoweth no man,cbut the dSpirit of God.
12 Now we have received, not the aspirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freelygiven to us of God.
13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s awisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost bteacheth; comparingspiritual things with spiritual.
14 But the anatural man breceiveth not the things of the cSpirit of God: for they are dfoolishness unto him: neither can heeknow them, because they are fspiritually gdiscerned.
15 But he that is spiritual ajudgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man.
16 For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may ainstruct him? But we have the bmind of Christ."
I have a testimony of this, that we come to know things of God through the Spirit of God! We cannot logically prove He is there or gain a testimony of His love for us. The Spirit, which teaches us through feelings of goodness, peace, and love, will tell us what is true. Now if we can just help people to understand this wonderful gift, I believe that is the key!
This week has been really good. We had the most fantastic stake conference this weekend. The Saturday Evening Session was all on the Hastening of the Work of Salvation. Probably one of my favorite talks was from president Millard-that man is a power house speaker. He talked about how we covenanted before we came to earth to serve our Heavenly Father and to be a part of His work in bringing others unto Christ in this life! He bore a strong and simple testimony of the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ, as did his son the next day in conference. We also heard from Elder Call, a member of the Seventy, Saturday night and Sunday morning. He spoke of how we cannot progress in this life and come closer to Christ without trial and opposition. How do we stand strong during the most trying of times? We make sure that we have oil in our lamps, like in the story of the 10 virgins. If we prepare now by doing the simple daily things of scripture study, prayer, and attending church, we will be blessed with a heavenly peace during times of opposition if we turn to the Savior. I love the scripture in the Doctrine and Covenants 59: 23 "But learn that he who doeth the worksof arighteousness shall receive his breward, even cpeace in this world, and deternal life in the world to come."
The simplicity of the gospel and of God's promises to us makes the gospel beautiful!
And our Stake President, President Rodarde left the stake with a 2-part invitation to:1-Get your keys, get in your car, and go visit someone who needs help coming back to Christ, and 2- Invite the missionaries into your home and work together in hastening the work. The work is real! And God is really hastening it! Oh, and our mission isn't tracting anymore! Crazy! We will now be doing more member visits and teaching them how we can share the gospel. Heavenly Father really loves His children-that is so apparent to me.
Well, I can't think of what else to say today, other than I miss you all and love you! These next 9 months are going to fly by before I know it! I cannot believe I'm over half way done! I still feel like a newb! Anyways, I hope all is going well!