Monday, May 29, 2017

Just Believe Christ!

Not too much to report this week.  We met with recent converts, investigators, and did a lot of tracting.  I was also able to spend a lot of time helping others in the VC, from teaching non-members who had never seen the temple before, to sending a dozen referrals online, and from helping an hermana with her study of the Book of Mormon, to fixing a new sister's tablet.  But nothing too exciting or funny, so I'll just talk about the Gospel because the mission makes it so you can do that for hours.

I begin my spiritual thought with a quote found in an Ensign Article given in April 1992 by  Stephen E. Robinson:
"One of the most terrifying dilemmas in the universe consists of two facts. The first is expressed in Doctrine and Covenants 1:31: “I the Lord cannot look upon sin with the least degree of allowance.” That means he can’t tolerate it. He can’t blink or look the other way. The other fact is very simply put: We all sin. If the equation consisted of only those two facts, the conclusion would be inescapable: As sinful beings, we can never enter God’s presence. But that is not all there is. There is the atonement of Jesus Christ—that glorious plan by which this dilemma can be resolved. And the amazing thing is that the Atonement works in practical ways."
One of the differences between conversion and a testimony comes down to the application of our knowledge.

You can believe in Christ as much as you want, but true power and true conversion comes when you stop and take a minute to just believe Christ.  Believe that when He says He can make your burdens light, He will.  Believe that when He forgives all who repent, that includes you.  Believe that when He promises blessings, they can in all reality be ours.
In the eyes of God, we are mere children--toddlers stumbling through life.  But just like any loving parent, Heavenly Father is so excited when we make efforts to talk to Him, to walk after His Son, and to strive to be better every day.

Elder Holland said it best in April 2012 when he said,
"I do not know who in this vast audience today may need to hear the message of forgiveness inherent in this parable [of the laborers], but however late you think you are, however many chances you think you have missed, however many mistakes you feel you have made or talents you think you don’t have, or however far from home and family and God you feel you have traveled, I testify that you have not traveled beyond the reach of divine love. It is not possible for you to sink lower than the infinite light of Christ’s Atonement shines."

But Christ does not eliminate our personal responsibility. Stephen E. Robinson continues,
"We all fail at living the full celestial level. That’s why we need a Savior. The Lord says, 'Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.' (Matt. 5:6.) We frequently misinterpret that verse. We think it means 'Blessed are the righteous.' It does not. When are you hungry? When are you thirsty? When you don’t have the object of your desire. It is those who don’t have the righteousness that God has—but who hunger and thirst after it—who are blessed, for if that is the desire of their hearts, the Lord will help them achieve it."

If righteousness is something we have to achieve, then we also have to put in the necessary effort.
"With the gift of the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the strength of heaven to help us, we can improve, and the great thing about the gospel is we get credit for trying, even if we don’t always succeed." --Elder Holland April 2016

I would like to end my soap-box-ing with a quote from President Hinckley from April 1995, "May we go with determination to try a little harder to be a little better."

~Sister Galli

Car selfie with Sister Yang

We had exchanges! I had the chance once again to be with Sister Escobar, my MTC companion.
Video: City driving