Monday, June 8, 2015

The Hardest Battles You'll Ever Fight...‏

Hey all, not a lot of time this week, so, well, here are the titles of my journal entries for the last week or so:

-A Decent Day!
-A...Lousy Day
-No Package, No Appointments
-Not Again!

So yeah that was the week.

Honestly it's been pretty good, though. We're going through one of those phases where we really need to find new investigators but we're not having a TON of luck. The best part of the week is that we have an investigator with a baptismal date for the 27th! His name is Roberto Chavez. He's about 38 years old, the boyfriend of one of the members here. He's progressing well and he's a great guy I don't think there should be much of a problem getting him to his date.

On to the soap box part of the message.


David O. McKay once said something along the lines of "The greatest battles you will ever fight will be within the chambers of your heart."

I really love that quote and I think about it a lot. It's totally true. We all have our agency and choose what we will do and who we will become in this life. It's entirely our choice! So the greatest battles we will ever fight will be between what we want and what God wants.

I thought about this a lot because of an experience we had this week. Our ward mission leader showed us the house of some members that haven't been active in the church since they were kids - around 30 years ago. We figured out when we could find them in their house and planned to visit them later in the week. When we came and knocked on the door a lady, well into her 40s, answered the door. We talked and discovered that she was a member but it was obvious she didn't remember much at all. As we talked it was also pretty clear that, like any family, they had their share of challenges. We asked her a couple times if we could set up an appointment to come teach their family but she would somehow manage to derail herself from that idea.

My companion asked, "Do you think it's coincidence that we've come here?" He testified of the power of our calling as missionaries and that God had sent us there in that exact moment to help her with all the problems she was experiencing. I felt it. I knew it, and so did my companion. I think that although she didn't know it in the same way we did, she could feel something tugging at the back of her mind. I could see it in her face. We asked if we could come teach them and I could see what was going through her mind.

I think we've all felt it before. I've felt it many, many times. We think and think and think not because we are actually trying to figure out the problem but because we already know what the answer is. We already know or at the very least feel exactly what we should do. But we think, "I could just tell them to come back Saturday. Yeah, Saturday. I know I'll probably get late back from shopping, but I can try my hardest to get there on time." Knowing we won't. Or, "I'll just click on this page here. I know it'll be a bit risky and I might not get where I want to but it's not the worst that could happen." We try to make the decision anyone's but ours or the outcome anyone's fault but our own but we know, deep down inside, that we're deciding, that we've always decided, and that's how individuals and nations are built or destroyed.

In the end she said she'd come to church. We got her phone number, too, to call her the night before. She told herself she could make the decision in the future but she knew she'd already made it. When I called that night she pretended to not hear well and hung up. When we passed by Sunday morning her husband answered and said she was busy cooking breakfast and couldn't talk to us.

Actually, now I realize those were moments that determined her eternal destiny.

It makes me pretty sad, but I think this is one of the main reasons why few will get to God's kingdom. My companion's been sharing this scripture a lot and I'll share it here - 2 Nephi 28:30:

 30 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 say, We have enough, from them shall be taken away even that which they have.

The Celestial Kingdom is only for those that can bring it upon themselves to humble themselves, to take that leap of faith. I read this morning about James Covel, a Baptist minister that, although having been part of his church for 40 years, was ready to do all he needed to do to please God. He asked Joseph Smith about this and the prophet received Section 39 of D&C, which tells James he needs to be baptized. But he didn't. And we read in Section 40:

 1 Behold, verily I say unto you, that the heart of my servant James Covel was right before me, for he covenanted with me that he would obey my word.

 2 And he received the word with gladness, but straightway Satan tempted him; and the fear of persecution and the cares of the world caused him to reject the word.

 3 Wherefore he broke my covenant, and it remaineth with me to do with him as seemeth me good. Amen.

Well there's my food for thought this week! I know this work is true and I know it'll keep going forward, no matter what! And I know we can all do it! Love you all!

 A picture. I didn't take much this week, sorry. This is behind our apartment.

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