Monday, March 16, 2015

Obedience, Sacrifice, and Consecration 3/16/15

Hey Ya'll!!

I just wanted to share how happy I am today because of this beautiful weather we are having!! Sis Beckstrom thinks I'm a little overly excited, but there's just something about spring in Georgia:) Beautiful weather somehow gets me more excited to get out and share the gospel! And can I share how excited i also am for general conference?! I just tell my self to make it through this week and we have 2 more weeks. I don't think i've ever been this excited for conference:) April conference is my favorite. and its on easter!!! 
So we are seeing some good progress in the work, although our numbers don't really get to show it. One thing that has been a little hard for us since I've been here is getting investigators to church. Our church building is 30 minutes away for most people in our area, so it is a bit of a commute. We're really excited for the new church building in our area that is promised to be done in July. It's almost as if a temple is being built! It's the talk of members, less actives, and nonmembers. Everyone always asks us when its going to be done and if they can come see it. Problem is they use this as their excuse as to why they can't come to church now. The other is too far away, but they promise to come when the building is done in July. for example, we have a new investigator this week named Nina, whom we have visited twice now, and is reading the book of mormon. We've been literally exhorting with all diligence and asking everyone to come to church, offered to find rides for them, everything!. But Nina has said she'll wait till the building is done in July. So we emphasize that we need her at church! why wait when you can come now:) I'll tell ya I'll be so grateful for these people when that building is finished cause there will be many, even those we don't know, who have committed to come to church then!! 
So we've been exhorting with all diligence and inviting others to be baptized. Sometimes in the first contact with them while tracting, if we've felt prompted to by the spirit. We haven't felt it right to commit others to a date yet, until they commit to coming to church. Since this is the biggest struggle we're focusing this week on getting just one person to church, with a couple people in mind behind that goal. We've also had some great team-ups scheduled with members who will be good in fellowshipping them, but the members have been cancelling on us last minute this week. But we've still been able to go through with our lessons. 
Things with our investigator Sandy are progressing. We were able to teach her the plan of salvation this past week. The member we brought was just the one at that time. She was able to share with Sandy her experiences that are somewhat similar and how the gospel has blessed her. Little did we know that about the member though! Something that I wanted to share, we've been praying that angels will minister to Sandy, and Sandy pointed out to us that everyday this week she's received a card in the mail from one of the members that we've taken to visit her. A small act of kindness, but i knew in that instant when i saw the cards that the Lord was answering our prayers, in small and simple ways, but surely. WE have a group of men in the ward getting together next weekend to help clean up her yard. Sandy still shared that she's not interested in conversion but she's slowly changing, it will take her time. We invited her to "come and see" a general conference session at the church, it would be just her and us at the church most likely. But she wasn't too open with that. she likes her personal environment. But we've given her ensign talks from general conferences that talk on hope. 

So this past week, we had a great zone meeting. We started by having a training on personal revelation, and we took 10 minutes right there to ponder and think about what questions we had to keep in mind as we listened to the trainiings. As I thought about it, i got down and kneeled right there in prayer and asked my heavenly father for revelation to questions i had. The spirit was so strong in that room in those 10 minutes as 50 missionaries, pondered and prayed to heavenly father for personal revelation. THe biggest answer to my prayer came from a training on spiritual purity. I felt that all that i've been searching for, the very answer that i've been in need of, to all my prayers i've given in the past several months, came to me that very day. ItS something that i knew all along, and i've practiced before. For this very moment, when its needed most. I learned its time I make a choice that will have an eternal consequence, a lasting and impactful change in my life and my mission. The lord isn't done with me yet! I still have potential to reach, and only he knows what that is. I need to take all that i desire, all my thoughts, feelings and even actions , and lay them on the table of sacrifice. And take up that law of consecration, and the companionship of the Holy Ghost. I crave every feeling from the Spirit, and the more i've learned about eh gift of the holy ghost, the more i've been wanting it. I thought of what more the lord wants me to give my last 6 weeks. Lately i've felt my mind reverts too much to the future, fearing or pondering what it may hold. First of all, I need to replace my fear with faith. I need to remember who god is, my eternal father. He has a plan for me, and I need to have confidence tht god will direct me. Most of all, i can decide what i want to become and deliberately pursue that. OR i can accidently become someone less than my true potential, which satan cheats us of. Which leads me into how i will act.
The training on spiritual purity provided a game plan for how to sancitfy myself and always have the companionship of the Holy Ghost. I had to fast for a full day, prayerfully considering what i need to sacrifice, consecrate and obey. THen I made a list full of the things that hinder my ability to have the holy ghost. AFterwards, I prayed to God and promised him that I will fast or stop doing these things for 30 days. At the end of each day, i must remain accountable to the lord and ask for his help, seeking spiritual strength. I know this will help change my nature, not just my behavior. THis is exercising the principle of the gospel and using the powers of the atonement. It's already been a challenge. Some days have been hard. ANd I feel Like i'm back at square one. BUt I have noticed a change in myself so far. and its a working progress. I also read the talk in this months ensign on the anti nephi lehi's. if you haven't read it yet, i highly suggest so! then you'll understand me more. but its my favorite story in the book of mormon. sooo many things to learn from them. I've actually been telling myself everyday, my past is redeemed, my present makes sense (focusing on now) and my future is secure. having faith in the lord. That's from president eyring's fellowship of the unashamed. 
I love ya'll so much! happy birthday to hans this week!! love and miss ya.
love, sister hulme

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