Monday, March 7, 2016

Letter #86

Dear Mum and Family,

Happy British Mothers Day Mum!!!

Well I can't believe another week has come and gone and it is another month with the transfer almost over again.  They have changed the transfer times so we will find out when we move if we move on Saturdays now and we will move on Tuesday's. This is because of the MTC change to 3 weeks now in the MTC. So this Saturday we will be finding out if I move or not. It could be interesting seeing I have 3 moves left. 

This week has been better for us. We have found some people who seem pretty interested to learn and we should be seeing them this week. We have been still doing a lot of door knocking and talking to people in the streets. That's just how it goes sometimes and all we can do is push through and keep working hard. 

This week we are going to try and focus a lot more on members especially Less Active members. There are a lot in this ward so we thought we would try to bring them back along with asking for referrals from them of people we can teach. It will be good to do something different for a change and see the results that it brings. 

S****** is doing alright.  We were not able to see him this week because he went home to Cardiff this last week because it was British Mothers Day.  He was suppose to be baptized this week but because we didn't teach him we still have a lot to do and we won't be able to see him until Thursday so we will definitely not have enough time. He still wants to be baptized we just have to continue to help him be prepared for that day. We don't know when it will be now but when we see him we will get it sorted out. He is pretty busy with school too so that doesn't make it any easier. 
I am glad that you are doing a bit of ponderizing. I will try to remember to Ponderize the same scripture you are and I will let you know what I get from it. Thanks for keeping me up to date. 
Well I really have nothing else to say.  I will give you the weekly thought and be on my way. Hope you have a great week.

Weekly Thought
The thought that I want to share with you all this week is one like I have shared before I am just going to share it in a different way. I want to share it again because it is so important in helping our testimony to stay strong in the gospel. It is on the importance of doing the simple and basic things of the gospel. 

In my studies of the Book of Mormon I am in the book of Alma. My focus has been on the Zoramites who apostatized. They had been deceived by the anti-Christ named Korihor who taught that there is no Christ. 
We learn in verse 8 of Alma Chapter 31 that the Zormaties have been taught the gospel before. It says
"Now the Zoramites were dissenters from the Nephites; therefore they had had the word of God preached unto them.”

So what caused the Zoramites to apostatize or lose their testimony?  It was the lack of doing the simple things. Verses 9-10 in the same chapter say:"But they had fallen into great errors, for they would not observe to keep the commandments of God, and his statutes, according to the law of Moses."
"Neither would they observe the performances of the church, to continue in prayer and supplication to God daily, that they might not enter into temptation.”

So they didn't follow the commandments of God.  Those commandments could be daily scripture study, weekly attendance at church, the 10 commandments, and so on.  We need to remember that "God gives us commandments for our benefit." (PMG 72). He loves us and wants us to be happy in this life. Once we come to understand that the commandments are strict and not restrictive we come to understand how important they are to follow and how they bring us happiness when they are obeyed.

They didn't pray daily as it says in verse 10.  The word daily in that verse is key because the Zoramites did pray to God they just didn't do it daily and they did it repetitively.  It talks about the Rameumptom where they would gather to pray and they would give the same wrote prayer.  After praying they would leave " never speaking of their God again until they assembled themselves together again to the holy stand." (Alma 31:23)  This is not how God wants us to pray. 

 "The Lord has taught us to kneel and pray in the morning and in the evening, as individuals and with our families." (PMG 73) Saying things from our hearts.  Putting thought into what we really are grateful for and what we need help with before we start to pray.  We need to speak to God like we would speak to a good friend.
There is so much bad around us and so much temptation. President Boyd K. Packer said:

"Nothing happened in Sodom and Gomorrah which exceeds in wickedness and depravity that which surrounds us now.  At Sodom and Gomorrah everything was localized, now it's across the world." 
When reading that quote from an Apostle of the Lord it makes me realize the importance of doing the simple things. It helps to keep us away from all the bad that goes on around us. Like the Zoramites we too have those anti-Christ's, or those people or evil things that weaken our testimonies.  By doing the basic things daily they cannot weaken our testimony like it did to the Zoramites. 

I want to end with a quote that puts it all together really well. It is from Elder Donald L. Staheli of the Seventy. 
“Daily fervent prayers seeking forgiveness and special help and direction are essential to our lives and the nourishment of our testimonies. When we become hurried, repetitive, casual, or forgetful in our prayers, we tend to lose the closeness of the Spirit, which is so essential in the continual direction we need to successfully manage the challenges of our everyday lives. Family prayer every morning and night adds additional blessings and power to our individual prayers and to our testimonies.

“Personal, sincere involvement in the scriptures produces faith, hope, and solutions to our daily challenges. Frequently reading, pondering, and applying the lessons of the scriptures, combined with prayer, become an irreplaceable part of gaining and sustaining a strong, vibrant testimony”
I know these things to be true for I have seen it in my own life. I know God loves us and wants us to experience true joy.  By doing the simple things of the gospel we can enjoy more and we can truly see the happiness that life has to offer us. 

Have a great week and I love you all!!
Elder Peterson

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