19 February 2014

The Restored Priesthood

You know how we all have those points in life when we say "This is enough, this is all I can handle?"
Those are the points in life when we usually bump into another trial or hardship and we wonder how things could possibly get worse.
Well, I had one of those moments this past Sunday. My companion and I were doubled-in to a new area. That means we are both new to the area we are assigned to serve. On top of that this is her first time training and my first time in the field. That can add a lot of stress, not knowing the area and being a beginner at something. Though I've been trying my best, I was struggling to keep up with everything that had to be done and with staying positive. There's just so much that needs to be done and I feel like I'm really not qualified to get it all done (that's Satan talking, but that's a topic for another day). It's like I was trying to stack ten more boxes on a box tower that's swaying and about to come tumbling down. I just didn't know how I could add any more to my to-do list and keep my sanity. It was at this point that another box was added to my tower even though I wasn't ready for it to be put there. I got really sick on Sunday. I was weak and throwing up everything I was consuming. I really wanted to go to church so we could meet people in the ward, seeing as we weren't able to do that the week before due to the ice storm. I was so disappointed when I woke up in the morning and emptied out the contents of my stomach into a toilet bowl. I was frustrated. We're told that Heavenly Father knows us, that He is mindful of us. I thought if He was truly mindful of me He wouldn't be giving me this trial, that He would know I couldn't handle it. But I was missing the point and the bigger picture. There are so many lessons I learned from this experience, some I'll go into detail at a later time. One of them was that it's God's plan, not ours. He truly knows us and He knows what we can endure. He believes in us and our strength. Another lesson I learned is that God has given us so much here on earth to bring us peace and comfort through the hard times in our lives.
One thing that He's given us is the power of the Priesthood. This is a power that was restored to the earth when Joseph Smith restored Christ's Gospel. The Priesthood is the power of God. When Christ came down to the earth He used this power to heal the sick, raise the dead, and make miracles happen. Today, the same power exists on the earth. We are able to receive priesthood blessings by those who have the authority to hold the priesthood. God truly is mindful of us. He has sent us the priesthood to bless our lives. This priesthood power has the ability to seal families for eternity in the Temple, give blessings of health to those who are ill, and bless the Sacrament that helps us turn to Christ and remember Him.
I was able to receive a priesthood blessing of health on Sunday. Through that blessing I could feel Heavenly Father's love for me and I was given strength to endure my illness. As I went through the day things did get a little worse, but I was promised in my blessing that Heavenly Father would give me the strength to heal and I had the faith that He would. More hours past and I slowly began to return to health. The healing wasn't instant, but it occurred and I knew my Heavenly Father was mindful of me. I'm so grateful for the Restoration of the gospel on this earth and that through this Restoration the priesthood was also restored. I know that those who are worthy to hold it are a blessing to me and it is a gift and a tool that Heavenly Father has given to us in this day to help us grow in strength and grow closer to Him.

15 February 2014

To Serve Another

As I'm sure y'all are well aware, this past Friday was Valentine's Day. This is a dedicated day to show our love for others as well as for our loved ones. Though I like the idea of sharing our love with others, I don't like the idea that it's only limited to one day. We should be sharing the love we have for others every day, in big or small ways. Although chocolates are nice, serving others shows just as much love.
Out here on my mission I get a lot of opportunities to serve others. We are constantly looking for those who need help and serving the people in the ward and community. I absolutely love it. I get to put my personal needs aside to help uplift others; there's no greater feeling. Just imagine how much happier and brighter the world would be if we would just set aside our needs for the needs of others. Not only would this help to make the world a better place, but it can help us to bring more happiness in our own lives. In the book of Mosiah from the Book of Mormon there's a scripture that reads:
"And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learn wisdom; that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow being ye are only in the service of your God." Mosiah 2:17
When we put ourselves to the side and forget ourselves in work for others, we can gain a confidence and a happiness that becomes contagious. People will see the light in your eyes as you walk out on the street. As we serve others Heavenly Father can inspire us to become the answers to someone's prayers. He knows us all perfectly and knows what we need. Don't cheat yourself the joy of sharing in the happiness of another through service. Just one small service act a day can help bring more light and happiness into the world, and eliminate the selfish and cruel. I'm going to end my little post on service with a lovely quote from the Prophet Gordon B. Hinckley. May your days be wonderful and full of service. I promise you that as you go out there and serve others you will gain so much more joy in your life.
"He who lives only unto himself withers and dies, while he who forgets himself in the service of others grows and blossoms in this life and in eternity." Gordon B. Hinckley