Miracles are all around us now

Wow. What an incredible week. My companion  and I worked so hard this week and it felt so good. So many amazing miracles have happened. One thing we have been doing is inviting more people to Church. Literally everyone we talk to. We use the pamphlets and I love doing it. My grandma told me as she was serving her mission is that you should give a pass along card/pamphlet to everyone, even the grocery clerk. So we decided to take her up on that and we invited the lady at the petrol station. We usually see her there and we've talked to her a few times. So we invited her to Church, and she wanted to come. She called us about 10 minutes before church and told us she had forgotten her plans for the day, but that she had committed to come the next week.

My core experience with God this week was learning even more fully that everyone is a child of God. We met up with one of our investigators this week. We had an appointment and we had one of our members with us. As we got there, he was sitting outside with his friends, and he told us that he felt like the Church was a little full on and that he wasn't ready to commit. We tried everything we could but he just wasn't keen. We felt so sad because we love our investigator. He is such a good guy. So we left and continued working. Then the next day we were blessed by God and he answered our prayers. We saw our investigator at the shops and we talked to him and he apologized for the day before. He said his friend had gotten to his head, but that he would meet up with us in a few days. Ah. Miracles. God truly does love his children and will watch out for them. He has always got our back.

I learned this principle even more as we went on an exchange this week with the sisters in Hornsby. It was wonderful. There was just people everywhere. We met people from all kinds of places. Italy, India, Lebanon, Romania, China, Taiwan, Thailand, Bali, Samoa, New Zealand, America and so many others. And you know what? They are all children of God and He loves them all just the same. I loved talking to all of them and hearing their stories and being able to relate it to the Gospel. One woman in particular, is from India. As we were walking we felt very strongly to go and talk to her. She was sitting with a little baby. She told us she was here studying and she was very interested in religion. Oh perfect! We were then able to teach one of the most powerful restoration lessons I have probably taught my whole mission. We were able to tell her how our church differs from the rest and testify that it is true. She accepted the Book of Mormon and she wanted to read it. She definitely seemed really sincere. It was such an amazing day. We walked back to the train and I was so happy. It felt so good to be able to share the joy of the Gospel of Jesus Christ with one of his children.

In my practice of teaching as Jesus Taught, I learned once again the power of listening. I'd thought I'd learned this but I guess I haven't yet because it struck me again, how powerful a lesson can be when we listen. But as I listened this week, I was better able to hear the spirit as well. I could see the changes people were experiencing and then testify. God truly knows his children.

We taught the Gospel principles lesson about the Sacrament and I learned so much. The things these newly baptized or returning members taught me was incredible. I've come to appreciate the blessing of the sacrament so much more. It is the most amazing gift from the Atonement that we can be FULLY CLEAN each week. Jesus Christ gave his life to us without a single thought of himself. As we remember him each week we don't need to wonder the choice to make because it’s already made. To follow Jesus Christ and to come unto him. Just as he beckons us in Matthew 11: 28-30
 28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.
 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.
Take the sacrament each week and allow yourself to come unto Christ and enter into His rest.

In my studies this week I cam across a scripture in Romans 7:24-25
 24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?
 25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.
Paul has been teaching of the law and sharing that he is not perfect, as are we all. Because of our human bodies we cannot attain perfection in this life. It is impossible, we will make mistakes. But because of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ we will attain perfection in the next life. This life is a time for us to prepare to meet God, to overcome the Natural man and be as he is.
As Benjamin Franklin said "Would you like to live your life with ease? Then do what you ought and not what you please." This is in essence, the Natural Man or the carnal mind. Living after the pleasures of the world before allowing our spiritual side to make choices or decisions
Paul Teaches us again in 2 Timothy 2:22
 22 Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart
We must make the conscious effort and choice to allow the Holy Ghost to purify us, sanctify us, and cleanse us to become as God desires of us to be. I'm so grateful that in the process of my mission the Lord has allowed me to change for the better. To continue to learn and grow. To strengthen me and fortify me until I become unshakable as Jacob.
5 And he had hope to shake me from the faith, notwithstanding the many revelations and the many things which I had seen concerning these things; for I truly had seen angels, and they had ministered unto me. And also, I had heard the voice of the Lord speaking unto me in very word, from time to time; wherefore, I could not be shaken. (Jacob 7:5)

I know that God lives. He loves us and He wants against all else to have us home with him. It is all he does, he puts every effort into our return. I know we are sons and daughters of God, with a divine nature and heritage. We have eternal Glory waiting for us and as we do everything we can to get ourselves there, by helping others, we will achieve it. And as President Uchtdorf said:
"No matter how bleak the chapter of our lives may look today, because of the life and sacrifice of Jesus Christ, we may hope and be assured that the ending of the book of our lives will exceed our grandest expectations."
I know we can have full faith and hope in our Savior Jesus Christ. He gave us everything all because he loves us. Isn't it wonderful? Our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ are pulling for us. They want this for us and they want us to want to come back as well. This life is for us to choose right from wrong, to relearn so that we want to return back to our Heavenly Father. He lets us do our part because that is what will bless us the most.
As Elder Terence M. Vinson said,
"Rather then solve the problem Himself, the Lord wants us to develop the faith that will help us rely upon Him in solving our problems and trust him. Then we can feel His love more constantly, more powerfully, more clearly, and more personally. We become united with Him, and we can become like Him."

Something I have been struggling with lately though is being completely submissive. And I guess not only lately but my whole life. I think it is something that most struggle with. Accepting and showing the Lord that no matter what happens, we will be willing to accept and go with it. As I was studying this week I felt prompted to open then Doctrine and Covenants and section 43 is what caught my eye. I was drawn to a verse that I had previously highlighted and that was vs 15. I continued to read until the end of the section and it definitely changed my view.
 15 Again I say, hearken ye elders of my church, whom I have appointed: Ye are not sent forth to be taught, but to teach the children of men the things which I have put into your hands by the power of my Spirit;
 16 And ye are to be taught from on high. Sanctify yourselves and ye shall be endowed with power, that ye may give even as I have spoken.
 17 Hearken ye, for, behold, the great day of the Lord is nigh at hand.
 18 For the day cometh that the Lord shall utter his voice out of heaven; the heavens shall shake and the earth shall tremble, and the trump of God shall sound both long and loud, and shall say to the sleeping nations: Ye saints arise and live; ye sinners stay and sleep until I shall call again.
 19 Wherefore gird up your loins lest ye be found among the wicked.
 20 Lift up your voices and spare not. Call upon the nations to repent, both old and young, both bond and free, saying: Prepare yourselves for the great day of the Lord;
 21 For if I, who am a man, do lift up my voice and call upon you to repent, and ye hate me, what will ye say when the day cometh when the thunders shall utter their voices from the ends of the earth, speaking to the ears of all that live, saying—Repent, and prepare for the great day of the Lord?
 22 Yea, and again, when the lightnings shall streak forth from the east unto the west, and shall utter forth their voices unto all that live, and make the ears of all tingle that hear, saying these words—Repent ye, for the great day of the Lord is come?
 23 And again, the Lord shall utter his voice out of heaven, saying: Hearken, O ye nations of the earth, and hear the words of that God who made you.
 24 O, ye nations of the earth, how often would I have gathered you together as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, but ye would not!
 25 How oft have I called upon you by the mouth of my servants, and by the ministering of angels, and by mine own voice, and by the voice of thunderings, and by the voice of lightnings, and by the voice of tempests, and by the voice of earthquakes, and great hailstorms, and by the voice of famines and pestilences of every kind, and by the great sound of a trump, and by the voice of judgment, and by the voice of mercy all the day long, and by the voice of glory and honor and the riches of eternal life, and would have saved you with an everlasting salvation, but ye would not!
 26 Behold, the day has come, when the cup of the wrath of mine indignation is full.
 27 Behold, verily I say unto you, that these are the words of the Lord your God.
 28 Wherefore, labor ye, labor ye in my vineyard for the last time—for the last time call upon the inhabitants of the earth.
 29 For in mine own due time will I come upon the earth in judgment, and my people shall be redeemed and shall reign with me on earth.
 30 For the great Millennium, of which I have spoken by the mouth of my servants, shall come.
 31 For Satan shall be bound, and when he is loosed again he shall only reign for a little season, and then cometh the end of the earth.
 32 And he that liveth in righteousness shall be changed in the twinkling of an eye, and the earth shall pass away so as by fire.
 33 And the wicked shall go away into unquenchable fire, and their end no man knoweth on earth, nor ever shall know, until they come before me in judgment.
 34 Hearken ye to these words. Behold, I am Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world. Treasure these things up in your hearts, and let the solemnities of eternity rest upon your minds.
 35 Be sober. Keep all my commandments. Even so. Amen.
Wow. I felt that section was written just for me. In particular vs 15 and 16.
I am called of God to serve, to be placed where he wants me placed and to be what he wants me to be. And as Elder Holland said. "Mans extremities, are God's opportunities."
It’s up to me to be as obedient as I can and do what he asks, but it is not up to me how the Lord's kingdom shall be built and how I should be an instrument in his hands.
As we do submit ourselves, then the real growth happens, then the miracle of a changed being emerges.
As it says in vs 34, Jesus is the Christ, these are his words, as a gift to us. Our submissiveness is our gift to him.

I love you all to pieces. Thank you so much for impacting my life the way you do.
Love you
Sister Benjamin

No comments: