Sunday, October 12, 2014

Aug. 20, 2014

This week's reason for not emailing on Monday is that we were in Medford from 8:45 am to 4:30 pm being spiritually nourished by a general authority, after which we drove in a van of Spanish elders to
Klamath where we left our car, then made the two hour drive to Lakeview, just barely arriving in time to have dinner with some members at 8:00 pm! That's so late for a dinner.

So Elder Bednar did not come speak to us, but in preparation for this Zone Conference we were asked to read two of his talks, "Bear Up Their Burdens with Ease," and "The Atonement and the Journey of Mortality." So we discussed those with Elder Nielson when he came. I learned so much. It's interesting because it wasn't really the subject matter that I learned, it wasn't a lot of information I gained, I learned so much about how much Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ both love us and what
they both did for us. The talks (which I heretofore invite you to make a study of) are both about the Atonement. I'll give you a sneak-peek from what I learned. The Atonement redeems us and enables us. It makes bad men good and good men better. It not only allows us to be truly cleansed and freed from sin, but to be transformed into a better person, to really be born again! Elder Nielson talked about the born again Christians who ask, "Have you been saved by grace?" (This happens all of the time) and gave us an answer for them, "Yes! Have you been changed by grace?" I understood this scripture in a whole new light:

Mosiah 3:19 For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father.

He quoted Elder Holland who said something like, the natural man is not evil, he is like a river in its natural course or a diamond in its natural state, not altogether useful or beautiful, but when irrigated,
diverted, or harnessed, or cut, and polished, the natural man becomes both useful and beautiful to the Father. He becomes a saint. And it's completely through the Atonement of Christ!

We also talked a lot about how we can receive strength to accomplish seemingly impossible tasks through the Atonement. When our circumstances are painful or difficult, we shouldn't pray for the
circumstances to change, we should pray for the strength to change our circumstances ourselves, or to be able to endure, because through the Atonement we can receive strength to do so. Emmyways I won't tell you everything that's in the talks, you can discover it yourselves.

Why aren't my older siblings in any of those pictures you sent me? I want to see chubby Lindy. Just kidding!!! The other day in fast and testimony meeting a sister who was then pregnant bore her testimony, after which an older guy with a gut bore his and said he had to wait till after the pregnant sister bore hers so he would look thin and trim, after which her mother got up and said you should never say that to a pregnant woman, her mama bear had come out and she was just waiting for HIM to get up so that SHE would look good compared to his gut. It was hilarious. I'm kind of glad we didn't have any investigators that day. So you're not chubby Lindy you're just beautifully curved with babyness!

Speaking of investigators @ sacrament meeting, we have been teaching an investigator named Jessica, she knows a bunch of people at church but she's been pretty flaky about actually coming. Last week she said she couldn't come to church but the following week she should be able
to. She needed a babysitter for Saturday so we asked a Laurel in the ward to babysit her two daughters and she did. Then what do you know, Jessica and the kids all show up with the Laurel to church the next day! Jessica had wanted her to babysit on Sunday too, so the Laurel said she would if she could bring the kids to church, so Jessica came, just planning on being here for the first bit to help the kids settle in but she got a text saying she didn't have to work so she stayed the three hours!! It was awesome.

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