Monday, October 11, 2010

It's Christ's Church - Have Faith in Him

Well this last week has been a grand time of ups and downs. C's Baptism, tracting when it is freezing, teaching wonderful lessons on people's doorsteps when its freezing, getting mad food poisoning on Thursday, and a nice fast Sunday and powerful confirmation. It was a pretty good week.

We picked up 5 investigators last week and we have dropped 4 of them. Hahha. I guess that's just how it goes sometimes. One of the guys we started teaching, (the one we talked about in the ambush in last weeks letter) was telling us this week how he was a prophet. We tried to avoid contention, and tried to explain that we just wanted to invite the spirit and let the spirit testify of truth, but he told us he didn't need the spirit because he's a prophet and he speaks directly to God. I may have started laughing when he was telling us this..... anyways. We tried to talk about priesthood authority, and then tried to bear testimony but it was just not going to happen. BUT he did tell us why he was having us and our member-fellowshipper come over. HE said that he wanted to SAVE our member-fellowshipper from our religion. Our member was awesome though. And he did save him, saved him from dating and marrying a non-member! He was like, "Can you imagine if that was the spirit that existed in your home every time you ever brought up religion?" Awesome.  It's frustrating and sad to see people like D. the prophet who are completely wracked up in delusion and in the pride of taking honor upon themselves and who are just too hardhearted to look at the truth when it is standing right in front of them.  You just have to let it go. We invite, they commit, then we follow up. That is the elect.

D&C 29: 7 And ye are called to bring to pass the agathering of mine belect; for mine elect chear my voice and dharden not their ehearts;

We can only search for those who are ready, who have been prepared for us. Everyone should help find the elect. You can do it the same way you receive spiritual revelation for any thing else.  You can also pray to receive a spiritual witness that someone you know or will meet will be one of these who are "white all ready to harvest." Once you have received this witness then you can pray to know who they are. Ask Heavenly Father the questions you need to. Ask and ye shall receive! Have faith that he will answer. Ask who you know that knows them, or what they look like, where they live, how you know them - try to get to know them as best as possible. Then pray and find out how to bring up the gospel with them, pray for opportunities, pray for inspiration, pray that your paths will cross that you will be prepared when you see them. Pray that you can overcome any inhibitions that will prevent you from opening your mouth and sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ.

These are just some of the things that Elder Paul B. Piper of the Seventy shared with us at our zone conference on how to find people by faith.  But I guess the critical thing is faith. Not just faith in your own abilities, or in missionary work, but faith in Christ. Faith that he will support you in supporting his work.

Yesterday our lesson in elders quorum was on faith. I would refer all to the Gospel Principles manual, its like chapter 18 or 17, and to Preach my Gospel.

There is really too much to talk about on faith in Christ so right now I just want to focus on one part of it that kind of struck me yesterday.

I remember when the beloved Prophet Gordon B. Hinckley, passed away. I was a little shaken and at first I had trouble accepting that Thomas S. Monson as the new prophet. I didn't know why at the time, but looking back I've realized that my faith at that time was focused on the prophet. I looked to him. There wasn't a major disconnect there, I still knew Christ lived but I guess my faith in Him had never really been challenged. I knew the principles of the gospel, and I knew that each of its teachings were right because the spirit had witnessed it to me and the people around me had born witness to me of that as well. But my faith wasn't focused on the Savior. He was part of my belief but he wasn't the center. The center was the people that were alive, that I had heard speak many times before.  The spirit testified that the things that they said were true, but I didn't have a perfect knowledge of it for myself, and my faith in those people was what was holding my testimony together. Now this is not a bad thing. A testimony grows this way, but eventually we must all transition to faith in Christ, as a person who loves us and cares for us just as much as our Heavenly Father, and be fully converted. 

I remember being young when people that I looked up to did bad things, like when an older boy in our ward got his Mormon girlfriend pregnant, it shook me. It shook me because I saw him as a role model in the gospel.  It was just hard for me I guess, I kept going. I knew at times that Christ was my Savior and at times he was the center of my religion, but sometimes I focused too much on the ideas that stemmed from the doctrine of his Atonement and even accidentally placed more focus on those ideas than on the living person who made it possible.

D&C 1:38 What I the Lord have spoken, I have spoken, and I excuse not myself; and though the heavens and the earth pass away, my aword shall not pass away, but shall all be bfulfilled, whether by mine own cvoice or by the dvoiceeservants, it is the fsame.

*This includes missionaries ;). J. Golden Kimball said, "If the church wasn't true, ignoramus missionaries would have destroyed it long ago!" *

If you feel like missionaries aren't doing their best, find that faith in Christ, get some charity and talk to them out of love. I'm not saying be a white handbook Nazi. Just help them along.

AND If they are working hard!! HELP THEM WITH THEIR WORK!!! Haha.

We all need to look to Him. He is the only one who can provide us with a remission of our sins. Through faith, God can work miracles in our lives and we can righteously expect them.

My thoughts are scattered but I feel that this is what I needed to share.

I love you all! I am enjoying Fairbanks! C's baptism was wonderful! I miss you and I hope to hear from you all soon!


Elder Britton Winterrose.

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