Well hello there my friends and family!!
Things SURE have been CRAZY.
Here are some miracles with the people we've been working with! :)
Sorry it's suuuper long..... But suuper worth it!!!! :)
We saw Victoria and JJ last tuesday and our lesson was AMAZZZING. She struggled believing that God loved her. We testified that He does. We shared some personal experiences with her. and the Spirit was there so powerfully. I told her with all my soul that no matter how hard or how dark our lives may seem, God's love is fully with us. As we taught we shared a tender moment. Tears feel from Victoria's face as we expressed how much we loved her.
We also saw Darnell and Tiffany yesterday and had an AMAZZZING lesssssonnn!!!!! We taught the Restoration. As we taught Tiffany was just eating it up! She's so fun to teach! As we explained what a Dispensation was and what apostasy was she said "Wow! God must love us so much if He's so willing to keep sending Prophets to us!" Is she great or what!!!!! We continued and began to teach about Joseph Smith's first prayer, when God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ appeared to Joseph. As we read the words to her, Tiffany exclaimed "Wow, I just got the chills!"
She is amazing!
Trials are school teachers: WEAKNESS
Alright! Now to what I've recently been learning.
So, Throughout these past few weeks I've had many challenges that taught me beautiful truths.
The lessons I learned are in 2 parts.
part 1 Relationships
So! There are 3 types of relationship that we have while in life!
1st. Our relationship with God is very easy to understand. Just as a Child desires to draw closer to his father, the same applies to our Heavenly Parent. That relationship is founded upon prayer, scripture study, obedience and so forth. It is made possible by Jesus Christ. We talk to Him as He is ACTUALLY listening! PS-Which He is!
2nd. relationships with others. This is a very broad and generalized type. It can be family, friends, husbands and wives. fathers and children. Missionaries and companions. It is easy to understand that in this relationship we must treat each other with the utmost respect and love and adoration.
3rd. We have a relationship...with OURSELVES. Strange you might say? Well, some people can't live with themselves! hahaha. But truly we do. There are some of us who really need to work on having a better relationship with ourselves!!!
In the 1st and 2nd type, we love, and adore and cherish the time and memories created with each other. in the 2nd type We love others, we applaud them when they succeed. We are patient when they are struggling, we encourage bless, lift, inspire, motivate, and NOURISH. Above all. We love.
But. When we change the cameras view from others to US, it can be alarming to see how quick we are to look at ourselves as worthless, imperfect, and ugly people. We look at ourselves as failures. We look at ourselves with all the doubt, shame, and hatred that we intentionally avoid directing at others. We degrade, chastise, and hate ourselves.
We must look at ourselves with the same words of compassion and patience that we would offer to our dearest friend or family. We must treat ourselves with that same LOVE. For, that is how Heavenly Father looks upon US. The 2nd greatest commandment "Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself" has a double charge. We must love ourselves as we love others.
part 2 Weaknesses
Believe it or not, your weaknesses are actually GIFTS from God.
The scripture in Ether 12:27 says "If men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I GIVE unto men weakness that they may be humble..." The Lord GAVE us weakness as special tools to teach us. In example, one might struggle with perfectionist attitudes. They are too hard on themselves, they struggle loving themselves as they are. This trials/weakness is not because you are dumb, or you have failed. The weakness does NOT define your worth! The weakness comes because God loves you, and He knows what trials will teach you the most, and bring you the MOST joy. The Scripture continues. "I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.”
Having weaknesses is a measuring unit of coming closer to God. It said "if men come unto me, I will show unto them their weakness." Recognizing our weaknesses does not mean we are being distanced from God and that He's disappointed that we are not enough. It means He is ready to teach us, and because He is all knowing and loves us infinitely He knows that adverse circumstances when handled with faith bring us CLOSER to God and not further. When we are okay and life is good and easy, our prayers become more casual and light. When we are struggling our prayers are transformed! and we come closer to Him.
Think of it like this! A humanitarian group shows up in the thriving metropolis of...England. (just an example I don't hate England) The humanitarian group has limitless resources and is ready to help out! "We've brought you all WATER!" "England replies "We've already got water..."
Humanitarians: "ummm.... we've got FOOD!!!!" England: "So do we...."
Humanitarian group shyly retreats embarrassed. Now, if that same group showed up in Africa with those resources the response would be "YES COME!PLEASE!!! WE NEED YOU!" The humanitarian group dumps its resources. needs are met, Lives are touched, and love lives. They come closer.
The same is with us. If we are "ok" and our needs are met already, we don't have need of Heavenly Father and we become snooty brats. But when we are in need and we are desperate for His help. He can DUMP His love upon us and every resource we need from a perfect Loving Heavenly Father. We come closer to Him, our hearts are stretched and we become more like God. and that is why we came here!
Think of the woman with the issue of blood who reached out to touch Christ's clothes as He passed by. Were it not for her GREAT affliction, she would not have come to Christ.
I testify that God loves us. I testify that Christ's Atonement covers and enriches us. His Grace. is Sufficient. With Christ we can overcome our weaknesses and come closer to Him. With Christ all is possible. I testify that He really does live and walk this earth.
This is His church. In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.