Sunday, March 15, 2009

I know it is true!

I have had many experiences to bear my testimony in the past year. When I feel prompted by the Spirit, I get up and bear my testimony in Sacrament Meeting. Through my calling of Relief Society President over the summer and testifying after lessons were given I shared a simple testimony of the principle that had been taught. My calling as Gospel Doctrine instructor this year has given me so many opportunities to bear my testimony when I teach. And this semester every time I go to Mission Prep I am given the opportunity to bear my testimony about some principle, and then as I am sharing what we discussed in class I again bear my testimony. Through these wonderful opportunities my testimony has grown so much. To quote Elder Boyd K. Packer, "Oh, if I could teach you this one principle. A testimony is to be found in the bearing of it." I have put this principle to work, and know that it is true.

I know the Church is true. My knowledge of the Gospel has gotten me through so many hard times in my life. It has brought me such peace and happiness throughout my life. I know that Joseph Smith is a prophet who was called of God to restore the Gospel to the earth in these latter days. I know that Thomas S. Monson was called of God to lead His Church today. I know the words he speaks come from God and are for our benefit today. I know that the Book of Mormon was protected and preserved to be brought forth in the latter days. I know that it was meant to come forth so we could have it today. I know that in 1820 a young boy saw God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ. I know that he was called of God to restore the True Church of Jesus Christ to the earth today. I know that he translated the Book of Mormon with help from God. I know that we can learn so much from reading the words written in the Book of Mormon. There is a Spirit I feel when I am reading the Book of Mormon that I don’t feel any other time. The Book of Mormon testifies of Jesus Christ. It goes hand in hand with the Bible, the Old and New Testament. It clarifies the things that are written in the Bible and gives us another witness that Jesus truly is the Christ, the Savior of the world. The words written in the Book of Mormon can help us learn what we need to do in order to be able to return to live with our Heavenly Father and Savior Jesus Christ again after we die. In reading the Book of Mormon, we can learn who we are. We can learn where we came from, and we can learn where we are going. Our lives have a divine purpose and reading the Book of Mormon can help us realize that divine purpose. I know that as we read the Book of Mormon and humbly ask God the Father to help us know if it is true, we will know. We will feel the overwhelming assurance from the Spirit telling us that it is true. As we pray to know the Book of Mormon is true and accept that witness that it is and come unto Christ through baptism, we open the door to eternal life with our God and our Savior. Nothing in my life means more to me than the idea of eternal life with my family. I know that families can be together forever because of the sealing power which comes through temple sealings. I know that families can be linked together through temple work for the dead. I know that there is life after death, and I know that I will be able to be resurrected and live again so long as I live worthily while I am here on earth. I know that I was blessed to live on earth today for a reason. I know that Heavenly Father has a plan for my life and that as I consult Him as I make decisions in my life, I will know what I am supposed to do. I know that prayer has great power. I have felt the Spirit with me as I kneel down to pray. I know that Heavenly Father does hear and answer my prayers. I have had so many prayers answered througout my life. The answers may not come when I want them to come or how I want them to come, but it is always for my benefit and as I accept the Lord's will in my life great blessings can come to me.

The Gospel is so wonderful. I honestly don't know where I would be without it in my life. I am really looking forward to being able to go share the Gospel with my brothers and sisters wherever I am called. I pray that I will have the Spirit with me as I leave my family and home and friends to go out into the mission field and share the Gospel. And I pray that the Spirit will touch the hearts of the people I meet so that they too can feel the Spirit in their lives and receive the blessings it brings. I can submit my papers in two weeks now and should have my call within 5 or 6 weeks. I can't wait to see where I will be going. I know that the Lord has a place prepared for me where there are people whose lives I can touch. This is a very exciting time for me, and while it won't be the easiest thing I could do I know that it will not be something that I will regret.

I taught Sunday School again today. The lesson was on the restoration of the Church. For part of the lesson we talked about the importance of the Sacrament. We read Doctrine and Covenants 27: 2 which says, "For, behold, I say unto you, that it mattereth not what ye shall eat or what ye shall drink when ye partake of the sacrement, if it so be that ye do it with an eye single to my glory--remembering unto the Father my body which was laid down for you, and my blood which was shed for the remission of your sins." We discussed that verse and what it means to partake of the Sacrament with an eye single to the glory of God. Then Kyle directed a question to me. He asked if I think that partaking of the sacrament with an eye single to the glory of God is in any way connected to Moses 1:39 which says, "For behold, this is my work and my glory--to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man." As he was asking the question, I freaked out because I had no clue how to answer it. Here I was in a room full of returned missionaries, who likely could give better responses than I, but the question had been directed at me so I said a quick prayer in my heart and began to answer the question. Words just came to me. Yes, I do think they are connected. As we partake of the Sacrament with an eye single to God's glory we are looking toward the eternal life that is ours if we live our lives worthily. If we live our lives in a way that we are looking toward God in everything, we will be able to return to live with Him again. The answer I gave didn't come from me. It came from the Lord through the Spirit. I know that because I took time to prepare my lesson and because I prayed that I would have the Spirit with me as I taught I was able to answer the question. I am actually really grateful for that question. When I am on my mission I know that I will be asked questions that I don't know how to answer, but so long as I am in tune with the Spirit I will be able to answer them in a way that the Spirit will be ablet to touch the hearts of the people I am teaching. I am going to have to go over and thank Kyle for that.

I really loved that Sacrament Meeting today was on preparing for General Conference. I always love Conference and listening to the talks that are given. October Conference was amazing and each talk had something that I needed to hear. I know that if I start preparing to hear the words which will be spoken I will again hear messages that I need to hear and will greatly bless my life.

Today has just been another of those amazing days like last Sunday was. The Spirit I have felt is so strong and wonderful. That's something I've noticed in my life in general lately as I have been preparing to serve my mission, and it has been such a blessing. I am going to do everything I can to live my life in a way that I can feel this Spirit always in everything that I do.

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