Hey! Good to hear from yall again
I'm excited about the missionary efforts going on all over the world. It seems that the Brethren are really pushing to help the church become missionary minded as a whole. The work will not simply hasten by the increase of the number of missionaries. Missionaries need solid people with established families who will be willing to keep commitments to teach. More often then not, the most established people who could be strong members of the church, will feel too busy to meet with missionaries when they knock on their door. Having a simple contact with a member of the church who has set a good example makes all the difference in someones conversion.
This week has been fun. We've met a lot of great people who we're teaching. We're just having a hard time helping these people make it out to church. Marion's a pretty big area and so it's often hard for people who don't have a lot of money to find it in them to afford the gas money for church. We're doing all we can out here and I'm always trying to see how I can better my efforts. It's just an ongoing process of refining my actions and coming more in line with the will of God for His people.
That's cool that you met the Bowman's kids. The Bowman's are great up here. It's always a pleasure having a senior couple in the ward. They help us out a lot and have been so nice.
I've been studying this week a lot about the importance of the Atonement. It's honestly the greatest event that has happened in the history of this Earth. My thoughts reflect back to a conference talk titled "None Were With Him" by Elder Holland. It's so impossible to comprehend the willpower of Jesus Christ. Coming into all the pains of the sins and temptations that we go through, all the emotional sorrow that we not only cause, but also the sorrow that comes upon us by mere circumstance, the pains that we run into by our own disobedience or even simply the pains we experience by accident could not have been an easy task. At first it's reassuring to think that someone with such a strong relationship with God is going through this because God was there to strengthen Christ through those pains. But then the fact that God left Jesus to Himself for some of this suffering comes into the picture. How was Jesus Christ so strong to be able to complete that on his own? It's amazing. I think of the trials that I have to go through in my own life and contemplate how difficult some times have been for me, but then I realize: God is always there for me. He will never leave me. I can always turn to Him for my strength. How would I fare under these menial trials that I go through without God? I simply couldn't make it. I don't know how people go through life without the Atonement in their lives. I can't even imagine where I would be without the Atonement in my life. Certainly I wouldn't be here, teaching this glorious message and preparing myself to have a successful family and eternal peace and joy someday. There's a quote from Preach My Gospel that says something along these lines. "As your testimony and understanding of the Atonement grows, your desire to share it with others will increase". That applies to everyone. Whenever I feel hesitant about sharing the gospel, whenever I feel like I'm not teaching with power, I turn my studies back to the Atonement.
The Atonement of Christ is the means that everything important on Earth is accomplished. Without it, we have no purpose here on Earth; with it, there is so much more. And with a true understanding of the Atonement, notably that the gospel of Christ is faith, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost and enduring to the end, bring a much greater understanding and a true understanding of our purpose here in life. How people go through life with a warped sense of our purpose is beyond me. I again look to what an impact the teachings of truth have been in my life. I can't see myself going through this short portion of mortality that I've been through any other way. I feel sad that the rest of the world is lacking this and it just awakens me to a sense of my responsibility in bringing this message into the lives of others.
The gospel of Jesus Christ is true. A true understanding of it is 100% necessary for eternal life. Without this knowledge it is impossible for one to truly live a life in which they are devoted too and leaning on Christ forever. This mission is setting the path for my entire life. I will not and cannot live without relying upon my Savior Jesus Christ.
"O Lord, I have trusted in thee, and I will trust in thee forever. I will not put my trust in the arm of flesh; for I know that cursed is he that putteth his trust in the arm of flesh. Yea, cursed is he that putteth his trust in man or maketh flesh his arm." (2 Nephi 4:34)
Just continue to pray for me that I'll have continued strength in this work. I need all the help that I can get. I'll let you know how things go as some more people progress.
Love ya so much,