North Carolina Charlotte Mission

Behold, O Lord, their souls are precious, and many of them are your brethren; therefore, give unto us, O Lord, power and wisdom that we may bring these, our brethren, again unto thee. -Alma 31:35

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

"Do you hear... carving?" 10/22/12

One thing I've realized on my mission is that time is relative. The speed you're moving at determines how quickly the week goes. Well, this week went by really slowly, which means that we were probably getting a lot done! We were very busy, from start to finish, and that's always a good thing.

Just so you all know, I am on my second transfer. At the start of this latest transfer we got another brand new missionary in our district, Elder Larson. As I am the best at playing piano in my district (and my zone too, come to think of it), I always play piano for district meeting.
Well, I was fooling around on the piano before the meeting, since only four missionaries had shown up at that time and there was about ten minutes before it started. All of a sudden, while I was playing some stuff I know, Elder Larson said, "Hey! I know that song! That's Dancing Mad, Third Tier, isn't it?"

I nearly fell off of the bench. Apparently someone else in the world actually knows that song.

I actually got to go on exchanges with Elder Larson this week, and we had a pretty good time. We had to do some preparations for a fireside the branch was putting on that Sunday; it was meant specifically for nonmembers, so people would be giving talks about the Church, explaining what we believe, and Elder Molina and I would teach the first lesson. Afterward, there would be a question and answer session. Anyway, we wanted to get as many people as possible to this fireside, which meant we had to make a lot of phonecalls.

Apparently Dobson is in some sort of black hole of phone reception, because we can never make or receive calls when we're in our area. I think that our phone is a bit like the Liahona and that its reception is dependant on our faith. I have noticed, for instance, that the closer we get to the Dobson Chapel, the better reception we get...
So whenever we have to do any serious phone-calling, we head over to the church and sit by the chapel. Elder Larson quite patiently waited while I made 38 phone calls for an hour and a half.

Anyway, this week has been extremely busy. On Monday we had Zone Activity, carving pumpkins and playing a form of dodgeball called Hit Elder Snodgrass. On Wednesday we had Zone Meeting, where we received a lot of training from President Craven. It's been nonstop since then. We've gotten a ton of new investigators, so we're feeling really blessed. 

One other highlight this week was that we handed out an Arabic Book of Mormon to some Muslim refugees from Sudan. We also ran into a lady who raised I got to bust out Elder Ballard's conference talk, along with Ether 2:3, to get an appointment. Score!

Most of these stories are happy thoughts.
Well, this week we had a talk with a woman who has had a very hard life. A lot of abuse, a lot of addictions, a lot of bad choices.. I'd never really met anyone before who had really hit rock bottom, and this woman had. We had a very long talk with her, trying to help her. I will not go into details, but essentially, the base of the issue was this: she did not feel that she was good enough for God to love her anymore. And we told her that this was a lie.

In the scriptures we learn that Satan has been a "liar from the very beginning." We know that before we were born, Heavenly Father had a Plan for us, that we would go to Earth, be born, get a body, and live our lives. We would have the chance to choose and make wrong choices. If we gave it our best, we would be able to return home and become like our Heavenly Father because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ.

Satan did not like this plan. He wanted power; to force people to do want he wanted them to do. But he couldn't do that unless people let him, so he came up with a story to get us to follow him. He told us that there was no way we could possibly succeed in God's Plan. It was too hard, he said. The only way we could return to Heavenly Father's presence was if he, Lucifer, forced us to be perfect, if he did everything for us. He said, in effect, that we were not good enough.

And that was Satan's first lie. His only lie, if you really think about it. Heavenly Father made us, and He knew exactly what we were capable of. He knew that we could make it. A third of God's children were afraid about having to choose for themselves, and so they decided to believe Satan's lies and follow Him. They did not think they were good enough to make it.

Some of you may remember my missionary scripture, Alma 31:35: "Behold, oh Lord, their souls are precious...therefore, give us power and wisdom that we may bring these, our brethren, again unto thee."

I know that every soul is precious. That's what I told this poor woman. That is why I am here on a mission. I know that we are all good enough, and that we all can return home to live with our Heavenly Father. That's why the Atonement was made to cover everyone. God did not calculate casualties, he knew everyone could make it. Satan says we aren't good enough; Heavenly Father says we are. Through our thoughts and actions, we show who we believe more.

We all can change. We all can become perfect. We are all worth the effort Jesus Christ gave. It's going to take work to change, but it can be done. We are the precious children of God, and, to paraphrase C.S. Lewis, what does a God beget? Other gods.

The Church is true. 'Nuff said.

Hurrah for Israel!

Elder Fisher

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