Tuesday, August 26, 2014

August 25th, 2014

"We don't serve because of our callings, we serve because of our covenants." -Elder Wilford W. Andersen
This week was wonderful! On Tuesday, we were visited by general authority Wilford W. Andersen and his lovely wife Kathleen. It was an incredibly uplifting, motivating, powerful experience that the missionaries of our mission were blessed to have! He taught us the importance of teaching by the Spirit. He focused on teaching us how to help those that we teach understand the gospel clearly, feel the Spirit - which will help instill within them a desire to choose the right, then commit them to act on the desire they feel and exercise faith! At one point of the meeting, he opened it up for questions. A senior missionary raised his hand and said, "Elder Andersen, when Elder Holland and Elder Hallstrom came to visit our mission, we were told how long they had been traveling and how much they had to accomplish in such a short amount of time. I was wondering if you could explain what the life of a general authority entails and why your schedules are so rigorous?" Elder Andersen was excited at this new question and went on to describe how they had been area authorities over the Caribbean for the past 5 years and some of the adventures that went along with that. Then Elder Andersen got really quiet as he talked about how amazed he has been in working with members of the quorum of the twelve, and the first presidency. With emotion in his voice and tears in his eyes he simply said, "I revere them.... These are men of God." The Spirit sent chills up my spine and tears sprang into my eyes as well, because I knew that his words were true. The leaders of our church are wearing out their lives in the work of the Lord, because they truly understand it's importance. We are SO blessed to have a prophet on the earth today!
Darien is doing really, really well! :) We love him so much! We had a lesson this last week with him that seemed very different from the other lessons we have had. He had downloaded the gospel library and has watched a lot of videos and read a lot of good material about Joseph Smith and his experiences. We were so happy he was seeking good information and putting time into searching. We recognized though, that for him to truly know if Joseph Smith was a prophet of God, he needs to read the Book of Mormon and gain a testimony of it. So we read with him, starting right at the beginning - 1 Nephi 1. As we discussed Heavenly Father wanting to help His children and commanding them to leave Jerusalem, the member that was with us felt prompted to share a personal story where Heavenly Father turned a sad, frustrating situation that he and his wife and previously dealt with, and turned it into an incredible blessing! He shared the scripture 2 Nephi 2:1-2 where Lehi is speaking to his son Jacob and tells him that even though he has suffered a lot in his childhood, that God will "consecrate thine afflictions for thy gain." We each testified of how that scripture had applied in our lives, and as Darien listened, he allowed the spirit to teach him as well!! He said, "yeah.... I really like that, because I need to remember that even though things seem bad a lot of the time, there are a billion people out there who have it a billion times worse than I do! So I should be focusing on the positive a lot more." :D Yay! It was wonderful to see the light in his face as he felt the Spirit, and made that discovery for himself. The scriptures can help us find what we need and teach us how to bring our lives in closer harmony with the teachings of the Savior. :)
Kat is also doing so good! Holy cow, I really feel so grateful Heavenly Father allowed me to meet her! She is so prepared, we haven't felt like we are doing much. She had her baptismal interview two days ago, and she excitedly announced to all the women in relief society yesterday that her baptism is coming up fast! So... I can't wait to tell you about it next week!
I know the gospel is true! This past week, I got the chance to read Elder Russell M. Nelson's BYU commencement speech and it was very powerful. My favorite part reads, "Your religion is not just about showing up for church on Sunday. It is about showing up as a true disciple from Sunday morning through Saturday night - 24/7. There is no such thing as a part-time disciple of the Lord Jesus Christ."
I have gained a testimony of this from the lives of so many members of the University Park Branch here in State College, PA. They are anxiously seeking ways to share their faith with the people they study with, work with, teach, etc.. Their lives are testaments of Jesus Christ. At the end of Elder Andersen's time with us, he admonished us to remember that, "we do what we do, because we love Jesus Christ." What has the love of the Savior inspired you to do? I hope it inspires you to be an example of Him, at all times, and in all things, and in places. :) I love you so much! I hope everyone has a wonderful week!!

Sister Walborn
p.s. Pictures: 1) After the Elder Andersen visit, we went on campus for Forums and the sky decided to dump a lot of rain on us! We were soaked!! Fun adventures. 2) Kat and Codey have a cat named Simba that likes to perch on Codey's shoulders. Codey wanted to see if Simba would perch on other people too... and I was the one standing closest to him. haha we did it! LOVE YOU!

No comments:

Post a Comment