Elder McConkie said this week in his letter to me: “At times, I feel discouraged … However this has made it clear to me how much I have to rely on the Lord – His grace matters, His view is the one that matters. I just but need to turn to him. After all, Moroni 10:5. :)” I find it so amazing that many of the messages he sends home are right in sync with what we need to hear. Learning to recognize our weaknesses as weaknesses and humble ourselves before the Lord gives us the greatest strength. In meekness, we will be “more receptive” to the promptings of the Spirit and Grace of the Lord.
This past week was – again – a great week for growth. Slowly, I am beginning to change. Slowly, I am beginning to feel the real joy of this work. In “The District“, there’s a section in one of the videos where a missionary makes the comment that they are so tired, but so happy. This is so true! You know that feeling of pure exhaustion you get in your chest at the end of the day, the feeling that lets you know you are going to have a solid sleep that night? Yep, well that feeling sets in around 4-5 each afternoon. The work is exhausting, but the moments where lessons are full of the Spirit, people change, and you see little miracles, the joy you feel overwhelms that tiredness.
*Paul and *Linda were our main focus throughout the week. We skyped Paul and visited the family briefly throughout the week. They love us and we love them – their culture is Long Islanders through and through.
So, we changed our P-day (preparation day) to Tuesday because we had two weddings for investigators Monday evening. Two Hispanic couples, both with kids, were married yesterday. Elder Sirrine and I performed a song at the wedding. He sang and played and I sang an improvised harmony to Mas Cerca, Dios, A Ti (Nearer My God to Thee), and it sounded pretty good, considering neither one of us are incredible singers and we put it together yesterday. 🙂
The District (4 Elders, 2 Sisters and 1 Senior Couple) worked this past week with renewed effort and diligence to reach their goals for planting seeds (talking with new people), teaching lessons and contacting referrals. They saw some great success. Nevertheless, while numbers are important for measurement and goal setting, Elder McConkie was given the opportunity to share his thoughts on a Christ centered perspective and effort.
My favorite part of Monday, though, was our District Meeting we held after we set up for the wedding. Elder Johnson had asked me to do a workshop on sanctification and how we could turn the success of this last week into the beginning of something amazing—not our peek week or a one-time deal.
Truly, the Spirit taught the workshop. The reason why this was my favorite part of the day is that I felt the Spirit truly working through me – the workshop meant so much more because we had taken the time as a District to dedicate ourselves to Christ.
The point of the workshop centered around having our ‘eyes single to the glory of God.’ After we read Doctrine and Covenants 4:5, Mormon 8:15, and Colossians 3:22, we all shared comments and our thoughts. We then read Doctrine and Covenants 59:1 – put the focus on “with an eye single to my glory” – and then we read Moses 1:39.
To tie it all together, what are we to have an eye single to?? To God’s glory.
What is His glory? “[T]o bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man” (Moses 1:39).
With this focus on His glory, the word “singleness” is also very important. With one foot out, and one foot in we are lukewarm and God has said that He will “spew [these] out of my mouth” (Revelations 3:16). We also went over the point of “numbers” with our key indicators. Yes, numbers are important for us to measure our progress, and with that we need to have an increased focus on the person we talk to or teach in the moment we are doing so.
I am sure that Christ could number every person He suffered for. However, that is not why He did it. He suffered because He loves you and me. He suffered for the individual. We teach and search for individuals and our numbers will reflect that and should reflect that.
I am grateful for God’s patience with me. As I humble myself, He teaches me more because I am more receptive.
Also, I want to emphasize again how inspired Preach My Gospel is. This book, written by God’s servants is essential to this work, even to life. Each time I have a question or I am not sure how to do something, I read through this book and everything is made clear. Even in just my daily studies, my testimony is strengthened and my capacity as a missionary and person increased, especially as I follow what I study. When you take time to study this week, take some time to read and study something from this book – it contains all the scriptures we need to know in order to have a strong scripture backing as members of the church. 🙂
I love you all! I love getting your emails!! Good luck with your last week of school!!
The gospel is true; God is good, and I believe in the work we are out here to do. After all, what’s the purpose of this life? It’s for us to learn, gain experience, and obtain a body. 🙂 Such a message of hope. 🙂
Love you all! Elder McConkie 🙂