Monday, November 14, 2016

"The Fierce Winds Are Blowing Us Closer To God" (Ether 6:5-9)

Monday, 14 November 2016

Dear family and friends,

Well, it's been a frustrating week. But guess what? Life is beautiful, and as Sister Foote (mission president's wife) said, "The fierce winds are blowing us closer to God". Sometimes we face disappointments. Frustrations. Anxiety. Anger. Depression. 
All of this blocks us from progressing if we dwell on it. But if we allow the Lord to take the lead, He will help to make "weak things become strong" (Ether 12:27) and He will bless us with comfort and joy! This morning I read in 1 Nephi 14 in the Book of Mormon, and the first verse really stood out to me. 

"And it shall come to pass, that if [you] shall hearken unto the Lamb of God... he shall manifest himself unto [you] in word, and also in power, in very deed, unto the taking away of [your] stumbling blocks." (1 Nephi 14:1)

If we hearken to the Lord and follow His will, then He will take away our stumbling blocks and free us from our burdens! It was a great reminder to me of the importance of following the Lord's will and trusting in Him. 

Sometimes we just want things to go OUR way. Sometimes we want our lives to be perfect and happy and amazing. But if we didn't experience struggles and pains, we wouldn't be able to experience the joy! :)

This past week was really hard for us. There was a LOT of opposition that we faced. No one was home, everything seemed to be going wrong, and we were frustrated. And then on Sunday, Glayce (who is preparing for baptism) didn't come to church, so she can't be baptized yet. It was so frustrating! We just wanted things to work out. We wanted things to go the way we wanted them to go. We didn't trust in the Lord's timing, and because of that, we felt like failures.

Finally, we turned to the Lord. After all the struggles and frustrations we faced, we turned to the One who would help us and give us the perfect advice. And He did. He carried us through it. As we turned to the Lord, He gave us comfort. He has said that he would never leave us comfortless (John 14:18). That is so true! The Lord cares about each of us as individuals. He knows our pains. He knows our weaknesses. He knows what we are facing each day and as we turn to Him, He will guide and comfort us! 

On Sunday, I felt a bigger change. I no longer felt discouraged. Even though we knocked on a bajillion doors where no one answered, I was happy. I went about with a cheerful countenance because I had the joy of the gospel! I realized that if I just turned outward and focused on others, I would be happy. If I followed the Lord's will, I would find joy. There is so much joy to be found as we lose ourselves in the service of the Lord. That is something I've been learning. Giving my ALL to the Lord--heart, might, mind, and strength--is where the joy will come. God gives us joy when we turn to Him and when we choose to focus on others. When we serve selflessly and happily. I testify that there is so much joy to be found in the service of the Lord! We are doing the right thing. We are on the right path. This is a great and marvelous work that we are participating in and I am so thankful to be a part of it!

My invitation to y'all this week is to attend the temple at least once a month. (Or if you aren't a member of the LDS church, choose a day to walk on LDS temple grounds). These visits to the Lord's house (the LDS temple) will bring you so much peace. I know that as you do this, you will feel God's love for you and you will have greater strength to withstand the fierce winds and follow the Lord! 

Y'all are amazing. Keep moving forward and remember life is beautiful! Keep smiling and have a blessed week! I love y'all!

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