D&C 76:22

And now, after the many testimonies which have been given of him, this is the testimony, last of all, which we give of him: That he lives! D&C 76:22

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Smells like changes and Black Water....

Monday, March 31, 2014

So, supposedly, my comp and I will be having changes this week. Sad, cuz I really like him, but happy, because I will get to know somebody else...who might just be my last comp. But we shall see. Also, Fielding might be going to the dirty, dirty south. Lucky guy.

This week was pretty good. A little bit busy, but nothing out of the usual. We have had a lot of baptisms this month, but it isn´t all great, because most of them are niños and will be pretty inactive in a few months. Cody, when you go on a mission, there will be the temptation to take the easy way out and baptize kids in between nine and twelve whose families aren´t members, but the kids come and stuff. Be careful with that. It's easy to do, and doesn´t require much effort, but its not worth it. You want quality, not quantity. So try to find grown men and families. Baptize them. And the kids that they have too. But just niños off the street?? Don´t do it. 

Honestly, The only thing worth telling is that I am super tired all the time and that its really hot. I am super stoked for general conference, and we should have some investigators there. We have found some decently positive people this week, so they should be coming to the general conference, and we should be making some decent progress with some people this week. 

We have had some really interesting interactions with the ward in the last little bit. Nobody here really does anything. Ward council doesn´t happen, nobody visits, home and visiting teaching are nonexistent in this ward, it's a disaster. So the bishop in third hour yesterday (which wasn´t even combined) talked about how to do visits. We watched a video on the good Samaritan. And the video portrayed a different side to the story than what I had thought about. In the video, I could really see, through the portrayal of the actors, the compassion in the face of the Samaritan, and I thought about how, or the thought came to me, that the Samaritan didn´t suddenly stop to help the Jew because he had an epiphany, or because he decided to do something nice for once. Humans don´t act against our nature, and being tied to the natural man causes us to act naturally in ways that are not in accordance with Gods laws. We don´t acquire habits or act certain ways without it being a result of a change, like it says in Mosiah 3-19. I had the thought, ´The good Samaritan was exactly that. A good Samaritan. and Why? because serving and having compassion was something that he did often, and not a spontaneous act. That's why the priest and the levite passed him. As Christ often taught, the knowledge of the law is worth nothing if you don´t live the spirit of it. The Samaritans were regarded by the Jews to be vile, idolatrous, and unclean. they wouldn´t even eat food that came from Samaria, such was their fear of being ¨unclean.¨ 

Not that which goeth into the mouth adefileth a man; but that which cometh out of the bmouth, this defileth a man.

So, its not what we eat, or touch, that necessarily defiles us. It was what we do. 

14 For our awords will condemn us, yea, all our works will condemn us; we shall not be found spotless; and our thoughts will also condemn us; and in this awful state we shall not dare to look up to our God; and we would fain be glad if we could command the rocks and the bmountains to fall upon us to chide us from his presence.

And that determines our fate in the final judgement

 12 And I saw the adead, small and great, bstand before God; and the cbooks were opened: and another book was opened, which is the dbook of life: and the dead were ejudged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their fworks.

So The Samaritan did a good work, for which he will be judged accordingly. The priest and the Levite, however, fall into a different category....

 19 And we did amagnify our office unto the Lord, taking upon us the bresponsibility, answering the sins of the people upon our own heads if we did not cteach them the word of God with all diligence; wherefore, by laboring with our might their dblood might not come upon our garments; otherwise their blood would come upon our garments, and we would not be found spotless at the last day.

My patriarchal blessing talks about how my missionary service will be a basis in my life of service in the church. I used to think that that meant that I was going to be called to serve to do missionary things all my life. I think, to a certain degree yes. I also think that this means that what I have seen in this country is an example of, sadly, how not to be a good priesthood holder. I think that my whole life, I will have these reminders in my head of what not to do, and how I don´t want the stains of their blood on my garments. I know I am not perfect, and even as a missionary I am not perfect, but for that reason Christ expiated my sins, my weaknesses, and all the things I cant fix. He truly did die for me, and for you, and for everybody else.

I love you all. 

Zach

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