Friday, July 29, 2011

Gotta Catch Em' All

So I will be completely honest, I know absolutely nothing about Pokemon.  But I know a little kid who loves Pokemon, and the other day he was giving us some of his cards as a gift.  And Sister Warner, my companion, said, "Gotta catch 'em all!"  It was a really funny because I was a bit confused.  I had no idea that was associated with Pokemon.  Apparently I'm not too up to date on things these days.
But I really like the phrase "Gotta catch 'em all!" 

I decided that "all" could refer to so many things in my life.  Seeing as I am a missionary it makes sense that "all" that I want to catch or meet, are people.  I love the gospel so much and it brings me so much joy, that I want to tell the whole world.  I don't want to let one person go by without letting them know how blessed their lives can be if they listen to the message I have to share, a message of Jesus Christ, and how he is the ultimate source of all joy

I desire to share the gospel of Jesus Christ, because it is the cure, for everyone!  No matter what our problems or dilemmas may be, with faith in Christ we can find peace.  I have found that peace in my own life and desire to share it with others.  I am heeding the Saviors call to, "Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature” (Mark 16:15).

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Matter of Fact

I have decided that it might be possible to learn all I need to learn by simply reading bumper stickers.  It is truly amazing how much you can learn by driving around reading the genius things, and sometimes not so genius things, people put on the bumpers of their cars. 

I read a really great bumper sticker the other day that said, "A truth is still a truth even if no one believes it.  A lie is still a lie even if everyone believes it." 
I read that bumper sticker and right away related it to being a missionary and a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  As a missionary all I want to do is share what I know to be truth with others.  Most days no one believes the message we want to share, but I do know that it is true and I received that confirmation of truth from my Heavenly Father.  I have not had the same experience as Joseph Smith, but I know what I know and I cannot deny the truth regardless of what the rest of the world wants to believe.  I love what Joseph Smith had to say when standing up for truth.  He said:

     "So it was with me. I had actually seen a light, and in the midst of that light I saw two Personages, and they did in reality speak to me; and though I was hated and persecuted for saying that I had seen a vision, yet it was true; and while they were persecuting me, reviling me, and speaking all manner of evil against me falsely for so saying, I was led to say in my heart: Why persecute me for telling the truth? I have actually seen a vision; and who am I that I can withstand God, or why does the world think to make me deny what I have actually seen? For I had seen a vision; I knew it, and I knew that God knew it, and I could not deny it, neither dared I do it; at least I knew that by so doing I would offend God, and come under condemnation" (JS-H 1:25)

I know that honesty is God's policy and the only true way to be happy and know joy.  I know that Joseph Smith did in fact see God the Father and Jesus Christ.  I know that I am a daughter of God, and that He loves me.  I know with all my heart these things are true, even when others choose to not believe me.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Pioneer Day

I just realized that July 24th is Pioneer Day, and so I was thinking how a lot about pioneers, or those who were the first to join The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.  I was pondering on the many stories I have heard over the years and the challenges the early Pioneers went through. 

The early Pioneers led by example and sacrificed so much in order to have the freedom to worship God as they would like. I am so grateful for their sacrifices and example, and I am grateful for modern day pioneers. 

We are all modern day pioneers in some respect.  We may not be traveling in covered wagons across the wilderness, but we all have valleys and rivers we have to cross, and mountains we have to climb.  I know that if we keep our faith in Jesus Christ and rely on Him, we can climb our own mountains and accomplish all that we set out to do.  We can leave a heritage of sacrifice and faith for future generations.  We are all modern day pioneers! 

I know that the choices I am make today will leave a legacy for those who will come after me.  I want to set a good example and always follow the Savior.  When I make the hard choices and set a good example that I am becoming a modern day pioneer. 

Pioneer Day Commemoration Concert

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Faith is a principle of power

(John 14: 25-31)
25 And in the fourth watch of the night Jesus went unto them, walking on the sea.
 26 And when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, It is a spirit; and they cried out for fear.
 27 But straightway Jesus spake unto them, saying, Be of good cheer it is I; be not afraid.
 28And Peter answered him and said, Lord, if it be thou, bid me come unto thee on the water.
 29 And he said, Come. And when Peter was come down out of the ship, he walked on the water, to go to Jesus.
 30 But when he saw the wind boisterous, he was afraid; and beginning to sink, he cried, saying, Lord, save me.
 31 And immediately Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him, and said unto him, O thou of little faith wherefore didst thou doubt?

When we have faith in Jesus Christ all things are possible.  We can do anything.  Often I feel like Peter and I have doubts or I question things.  I am finally recognizing that every time I doubt the Savior and all that He can do I start to sink and fall.  When we doubt, we are weak.  However, we can change the level of our faith by dong things that require faith. 
Throughout life I am learning that my faith is always growing.  Some days it is growing bigger and brighter, and other days it is growing backwards.  I am learning that our faith never stands still. 

As we do all that we can to strengthen our faith and trust in God, it is then that we are given power to do all that we need to do. 

 Faith is a principle of power! 

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Life's Precious Moments

"My dear brothers and sisters, we would do well to slow down a little, proceed at the optimum speed for our circumstances, focus on the significant, lift up our eyes, and truly see the things that matter most."  President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

Mormon Messages just melt my heart! This video really hit the sweet spot.  I often take for granted the simple things in life.  We really have to take a look around and enjoy the moment.  Far too often I am focused on the big events in life and miss the small moments.  I am coming to realize that life is made up of a bunch of small moments.
I look back on life before my mission and realize sure there were some really great accomplishments, and really big things I did, but the things that mean the most are the memories I made while doing the day to day things.  The greatest moments in my life have been the times I have shared with friends and family. 

My family and the gospel are the two most important things in my life and I know that when we put the Lord first and then our families we will find happiness in this life.  We will find that we can do anything when we have faith in the Lord and remain obedient to Him.  With the help of loved ones and friends along the way we learn to enjoy the ride. 

We must learn to slow down and really enjoy the time we have on this earth.   We must learn to enjoy the moment no matter what the moment may bring.  We cannot take for granted the small and simple things in life.  By living the gospel we are assured happiness and peace from the Lord.  

 President Dieter F. Uchtdorf said in a talk he gave at General Conference in October 2010 "Strength comes not from frantic activity but from being settled on a firm foundation of truth and light. It comes from placing our attention and efforts on the basics of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. It comes from paying attention to the divine things that matter most." "Of Things That Matter Most".)

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

My Road Map...

Last week I had the opportunity to visit another area of the mission that I had never been to before.  It was out in the country and for our morning exercise we decided to take a jog down one of the country roads.  As I jogged that morning I was surrounded by the corn fields along side the road and miles and miles of farm land.  I loved it, but mostly I was thinking about how quiet and still it was, and how at that moment life was simple. 

However, I know just as much as anyone, that life is really not all that simple. 

I really pondered on how do I resolve all of my concerns in life.  With everything that goes on around me my constant source of strength, peace, and an endless supply of answers comes from The Book of Mormon.

For me when I am irritated, angry, sad, or confused I pick up The Book of Mormon because I know that as soon as I start reading, I will feel better.  Without fail, the book changes me everytime I read.  I feel the love of my Heavenly Father, and I receive direction.  And most of all I receive a witness that it really is the word of God.  I love The Book of Mormon and know with all my heart that it is true. 

It is my road map that is helping me get through this crazy life.  I don't know where I would be without The Book of Mormon. 

I know that the promise that is given in the beginning of The Book of Mormon is true, and give everyone the same invitation listed on the introduction page of The Book of Mormon:  

"We invite all men everywhere to read the Book of Mormon, to ponder in their hearts the message it contains, and then to ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ if the book is true. Those who pursue this course and ask in faith will gain a testimony of its truth and divinity by the power of the Holy Ghost."

The Book of Mormon is the road map for each and everyone of us, and it will show us the way in everything, if we open our hearts and receive the message.