Farewell and Testimony

Hello All!

Tonight, I will be set apart as a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, to be serving in Columbus Ohio. While I’m gone, I will continue to send content to my brother about things I’ve learned regarding mission preparation (things I should of done, things that worked well, ect), and he’ll post the blogs for me.

I could not be more excited to serve, and I thought that before I left, I would take a moment to share a brief testimony with all of you.

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Alma 29 as a Guide to Missionary Work

Lately, I’ve been pondering on the passage of scripture that comes from Alma 29. Here, one of the great missionary examples that we have from the Book of Mormon, is earnestly desiring to share the gospel with those around him. He says:

Oh that I were an angel, and could have the wish of mine heart, that I might go forth and speak with the trump of God, with a voice to shake the earth, and cry repentance unto every people!

Yea, I would declare unto every soul, as with the voice of thunder, repentance and the plan of redemption, that they should repent and come unto our God, that there might not be more sorrow upon all the face of the earth.

But behold, I am a man, and do sin in my wish; for I ought to be content with the things which the Lord hath allotted unto me…

Oh that I were an angel!

Oh that I were an angel!

To me, this passage has always been a funny one. Not in a “haha” sense, but in a “that’s weird–what could possibly be wrong with Alma wanting to do more?” sense. After all, if we truly love the gospel and our fellow men, shouldn’t we want to share this with every one around us–nay, with all the earth? Of course! So what does Alma mean by “[I] do sin in my wish”? The more I think about this, the more I realize that this is not a chastisement of Alma for wanting to do something good, but rather a reminder that Alma, and we as missionaries ourselves, should not forget the many something goods that we already do have.

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Keys to Communicating Effectively as Missionaries: Love

One of the most important elements to successful communicating as a missionary is an unconventional one: love. Still, this should not come as a shock, for when asked what is the greatest commandment (and therefore the most essential thing we can be doing as people and as missionaries), the Lord answered his apostles:

Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.

This is the first and great commandment.

And the second is like unto it. Though shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.

Matthew 22:37-39

Having genuine love and compassion for those you teach shows your true devotion as a disciple of Christ.

Having genuine love and compassion for those you teach shows your true devotion as a disciple of Christ.

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Preparing to Serve a Mission without “Shrinking”: Thoughts on Last Night’s CES Broadcast by Elder Bednar

Last night, the young adults were lucky enough to be addressed by Elder David A. Bednar, apostle in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and his wife, in a CES Broadcast. (For those of you who may have missed the broadcast, you can find it here)

Elder Bednar addressing the YSA at a devotional held at University of Texas Arlington

Elder Bednar addressing the YSA at a devotional held at University of Texas Arlington

His address, entitled “That we Might not… Shrink” pulls from Doctrine & Covenants 19:18, which reads:

Which suffering [the atonement] caused myself, even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer both body and spirit—and would that I might not drink the bitter cup, and shrink—

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How to: Prepare to enter the temple prior to your mission

The most important thing you will do in preparing to serve a mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is enter one of the Lord’s holy temples and make covenants of eternal significance. More on these covenants can be found in a post written earlier this week–“The next big step: Understanding the importance of the temple in mission preparation.

Oquirrh Mountain Temple, Utah

Oquirrh Mountain Temple, Utah

Because going to the temple for the first time is a big and important experience, it can seem a little daunting or overwhelming. However, proper preparation can help immensely with the process. I was blessed enough to attend the temple for the first time on Friday, and I loved it. Thankfully, I had some wonderful leaders and advice which helped me appreciate the experience–advise which I’d like to pass on to you.

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The next big step: Understanding the importance of the temple in mission preparation.

Preparing to enter the temple as you prepare for a mission is an incredible opportunity and experience. We can talk a little more about the how-tos of temple preparation later, but first let’s look at what the temple is.

san-diego-mormon-temple1-thumb

Many you have probably seen a temple before, but maybe not. Whether you’ve been a member of the Mormon faith for your entire life, or you’re just someone curious about the LDS temples, it’s helpful to be reminded of what a temple is, and why it’s important.

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