Sunday, July 1, 2018

"Men should be anxiously engaged in a good cause" (February 26, 2018)

This has been a miracle filled week!

So many things are happening in this area, and our members are amazing, and we are just so excited to be missionaries!!

We got to teach relief society yesterday about the ward mission plan. We've done Elders Quorum, High Priests, so Relief society was naturally next. And we had an incredible discussion about member missionary work! A key point we hit was how we measure success. 

That's something I've learned as a missionary. If you measure your success by how many people get baptized, you're gonna think you were pretty bad missionary, because you're basing your success off of others people agency. Our goal is not to baptize, it's to invite! And when we are doing all we can to invite people to learn more, to invite them to make changes, to invite them to church, whether or not they come is their decision, once we've done all we can. So please don't let member missionary work discourage you! You have more influence 
on your friends then you know. 

We had a fireside last week for the Rochester Stake. A few members were asked to share their conversion stories of how they came to know the church was true. We worked really hard all week to invite all our investigators, and two of them came! Janet came with her three little kids, and Jill came. We set up young women to babysit at the church, and we texted a bunch of the young families in the ward and invited them specifically to come to the fireside and to meet our investigators, and three of them came! Janet must have felt like a celebrity because everyone was so excited to see her and get to know her and her three cute kids. It was a stressful day, organizing rides, and inviting members, and preparing a musical number, but we put it all in the Lord's hands, and it was a great night! We are so grateful for this incredible ward an all the help we are receiving. Janet is not able to come to church in the morning right now because of work, but she was really excited to come to the fireside, and the warm welcome she received is one step closer to helping her come to church someday soon. 

Our main investigators right now are Jackie, Jill, Janet, Jose, and Brad. So if anyone has any friends whose name starts with a 'J' send them our way. They are all progressing really well, and we have had a lot of really great lessons with members this week as well. 
So this week we had a training on smartphones for zone conference, and the next day in my studies I was reading in 2 Samuel 11 and it was really applicable to smartphones and technology. It's the beginning of the fall of King David from righteousness and it was interesting because it all starts in verse 1 "But David tarried at Jerusalem" As a leader, as the king, he should have been out with his armies, but he "tarried." He wasn't in the wrong place, just wasn't in the best place. Had he been truly focused on his purpose and serving his people, he would have been out with his armies. Then verse 2 "He arose from his bed and walked upon the roof of the Kings house" Again, this isn't bad, but now this is wandering. He is just distracted, and bored, he doesn't have a reason to be out there. It's not an evil or even a bad thing yet, but he doesn't have a specific purpose. Then later in that verse "he saw a woman, washing herself..." And he hasn't sinned yet. I loved a thought Elder Bednar expressed in a training video we watched . "If you don't invite it in, if you don't linger, and you turn it off, get it out, then it's not a sin. You can move on. It's a sin when you let it linger, when you choose to look a it" So David, hasn't sinned yet. He has stumbled upon something, but "he saw a woman, washing herself, and she was beautiful to look upon" So he looked, it was an accident, but he chose to let it linger. Then the story quickly follows with David's adultery, and attempts to hide his crime, culminating in the murder of Uriah. So I would propose that the tragedy of the fall of King David occured because he wasn't focused on his purpose. Being distracted, and being purposeless is not evil, but it is so much easier to be tempted by evil things and for them to take root in your heart when you are aimlessly wandering around roofs in Jerusalem or aimlessly scrolling through your device`. I have been studying the Old Testament recently, and this was just the chapter that was next, but it was really interesting to see how directly this applied to technology and why setting goals and being cautious about technology are so important for us as missionaries, as members, and for the world in general.

D&C 58:27 "Verily I say, men should be anxiously engaged in a good cause, and do many things of their own free will, and bring to pass much righteousness;
There is a reason the Lord asks us to be anxiously engaged in a good cause, because the power to act for ourselves is one of the greatest gifts God has given us, and it gives us the power to overcome and avoid temptation. 

Words cannot adequately express how grateful I am to be a missionary and to serve the Lord. I love it with all my heart. 

Thank you for all the love and support!

Hermana Meredith

Food features of the week, flapdoodles ice cream and Greek food!

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