Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Monday, February 11, 2013

Thanks for the happy birthday wishes!! They really meant so much to me. It'll be weird having a birthday out here on the mission, but I'm sure it will be good with memories.
So here is a crazy cool update on the state of missionary work from Ryan:
"Did you know that there are more sisters with calls in their hand right now than there are sisters serving in the field? How crazy is that. There is one mission that i heard of that is going from 12 sisters to 120!!" That is so great! I heard that within the next two transers we'll be getting quite a few hermanas and every time I've heard the exact number it's gone up so we'll have to see haha! It will be so good and I feel like the president is preparing the mission for the abundance of people coming in by helping us build our faith, our obedience, our diligence, et cetera.
So all of January we couldn't get anyone to accept a baptismal date, but now we have two. The lesson last Monday with Antonio was so spiritual and the Mormon Message was exactly what he needed to bring in the spirit and help him know that he doesn't have to know everything, he knows enough. The message we used was "Choose ye this day" and I love the line in there that saying 'maybe tomorrow' really just means not today. Our spirits feel these truths because they knew the truths before we came to Earth. The other baptismal date was Jorge who was referred to us by an investigator. He has a lot of doubts but has the desire to listen and learn patiently. He also made it to church yesterday. He tried to come by bus last week, but he missed one bus and so by the time he got there he was ashamed to walk in so late.
The big news of our ward... we finally got a bishop after like four months without!!!!! The new bishop is pretty young, like 35 years old. He actually kind of reminds me of Shaun because he has that huge stature and is strict with rules but knows how to have fun with the youth. We're excited for investigators to meet him because he has a fun and pretty social personality. After church we came home and made him and his family some cinnimon rolls (from a can haha!) and dropped them off. It really meant a lot to them. He told us how the whole day was just kind of like a dream and how embarrassing it was to have to stand in front of everyone and when people kept introducing him as bishop. We were able to comfort him quite a bit and let him know that we know that callings are made before this earth so we know that he has been prepared for this both before this life and also during. We also helped him know that he holds the keys for missionary work in the ward and so we are here for him in anything he needs. We really felt like that helped a lot to start this ward off on a great foot with missionary work with the new bishop and to help him trust the missionaries more.
Okay, one random thought I have is that I'm still working on reading through all the general conference talks from October and the one I read through last week was the one in the priesthood session when Elder Eyring talked about the boards he made for each of his sons to help them know their spiritual gifts. I was trying to think about what would go on my board (and I'd be curious to know what other people like maybe mom or dad would put on mine). And I didn't have a lot of time to search for the perfect scripture or anything, but one good scripture that I found was Doctrine and Covenants 100: 15-16.
It says "Let your hearts be comforted; for all things shall work together for the good of them that walk uprighty..." (it's kind of like yoga. You don't need to stress. You have the power to bring your life into balance spiritually, mentally, physically, and emotionally no matter what your situation is. And that is possibly by the hope that is brought about by Christ) ..."and to the sanctification of the church" (I love that word sanctification. That gives us hope that we can become better in each of the four aspects of our life every day. Our past doesn't define us and our future is still open. We can move forward more clean because of Christ) ..."For I will raise up" (I love the image of raising up. Not only are we literally children of a god being raised up to eventually become like our father. But that is also like rock climbing. You're raising yourself up to a higher level through your good works.) ..."unto myself a pure people that will serve me in righteousness..." (there is a phrase in my patriarchal blessing repeated at least 3 or 4 times about how 'because of your obedience and desire to serve him so I love that last phrase) I think it was kind of fun to find a scripture for me. If any of you feel inspired to find your own scripture too, I'd love to hear what you found and why!!
Okay... now the part that I think is the coolest. Okay, Hermana Mulliner was sick again this week (that's not the cool par). But she was really getting down quite a bit because she felt that here in this companionship when she was exercising the best and eating the healthiest of her whole mission she has gotten sick so many times. (and like I still haven't gotten sick in California except for the one time I had symptoms of food poisoning after a ward party but that doesn't really count and it only lasted for one day for me) So she was down about that and so we started researching the word of wisdom this week and we've found out so much stuff. We've gone pretty deep and we're still so excited to study it so much more. Like that took up the majority of our lunch discussions and a lot of comp study and personal study. We learned so much and we're excited to keep on learning more on it. I don't have too much time to write it all out, but I'll share a bit. Doctrine and Covenants 89:3 talks about how section 89 is for the weak and the weakest of the saints. Therefore, if we aren't the weakest of the saints (and I definitely don't think I am) we need to be living a much higher law than Doctrine and Covenants 89. In the church we have this perception that we are living the word of wisdom when we don't take the five things into our bodies (alcohol, smoking, illegal drugs, coffee, tea) but there is so much more to the word of wisdom than that! The thing is that we can't be dictated in all things on health because each person is so different and that is important because each soul is different. But if you look at the heading of section 89, it shows a pattern. Joseph Smith saw a problem, so he pondered on it and took it to the Lord and received revelation as the answer. That is how everyone should be treating their bodies. You should really practice mindfulness and start to notice how your body reacts to certain things then receive revelation about what you need. In this way, I believe everyone has a personal word of wisdom, a higher word of wisdom, that they should be learning about and constantly refining and developing throughout their lives. Many factor can determine this word of wisdom. For instance:
-family history. I have an uncle who died of colon cancer. Therefore, I may have genes that make me more likely to develop colon cancer. Therefore, I should take extra special care of my intestines by eating a ton of fiber and drinking a lot of water.
-notice how certain things make your body feel or possible things that make you have less control over your body that are borderline addictions for you. For instance, I don't have much control over my body with candy. I get candy and I have to eat it all. I know that I don't like how I feel when I eat candy. I want to taste it but I don't want to eat it. And when I get candy I don't want it in my body, so I always decide to eat it all at once so that I don't have to keep on eating it over time. That for me shows me that I really should not be eating candy or many sweets because that for me personally affects me a lot and makes my body have more control than the spirit. The whole purpose of the word of wisdom is so that the spirit can learn control and so that you can receive revelation, "even great treasures" of knowledge and wisdom.
-read your patriarchal blessing looking specifically for things that may relate to the word of wisdom. I always thought mine had only one part that related to the word of wisdom, but last night I found at least two other sections in the first half of it. That is one way for the Lord to guide you because that is his personal mini manual for you specifically.
-notice what you need and how much. Like I've been learning that in order to be happy I have to have good intense exercise that is fun for me. I also need to keep stretching to help relax my mind. I need 8 hours of sleep and not more or less.
I don't have too much time to share more, but I've been learning so much reading through section 89, reading through other sources like For the Strength of Youth, True to the Faith, the topical guide, et cetera. There is so much out there and I love it!!!
I hope you all feel a little inspired by that. Hermana Mulliner and I feel like we should write a book on all of this because we are loving researching it and it is so good!!!
Well have a good week!!
And may the spirit be with you!!
~Hermana Whetten