Saturday, April 7, 2012

Christlike Character

Well another week has gone before I was ready to start it. its been a bit of an intresting week. We had a zone leader counsel on Monday and we ended up staying in the office until 12:30 trying to prepare for it and do the key indicator report of the week. That was horrible.I have been reminded why missionaries are suppose to go to bed at 10:30. The meeting went well but the key indicator report meeting with President did not. It seemed like for conference every one thought that they could take a week off and not work.That was a bit scary. So we sat for a couple of hours and talked about it. After counseling for a while we decided to have a special mission study. So there is a great talk given by Elder Bednar about the character fo Chirst.  We based the study around this talk and after we studied the talk each missionary was invited to read one of the gospels before Easter. Wow it has been absolutly amazing. Last year President invited me to do a special leadrship study which involved reading the book of mormon and highlighting and studying the leadership qualities of the different characters. I decided to do a similar thing with my Gospels read (so when i read the gospel I highlight and study insights to Christ character). It has been a wonderful and enlightening study. I have always been puzzled about how we develop charity. PMG and the Book of Mormon tell us to just pray for it. I've tried that and I didn't feel much of a difference. Elder Bednar gave me a deeper insight to developing charity. Said he;
'Let me suggest that you and I must be praying and yearning and striving and working to cultivate a Christlike character if we hope to receive the spiritual gift of charity--the pure love of Christ. Charity is not a trait or characteristic we acquire exclusively through our own purposive persistence and determination. Indeed we must honor our covenants and live worthily and do all that we can do to qualify for the gift; but ultimately the gift of charity possesses us--we do not posses it (see Moroni 7:47). The Lord determines if and when we receive all spiritual gifts, but we must do all in our power to desire and yearn and invite and qualify for such gifts. As we increasingly act in a manner congruent with the character of Christ, then perhaps we are indicating to heaven in a most powerful manner our desire for the supernal spiritual gift of charity. And clearly we are being blessed with this marvelous gift as we increasingly reach outward when the natural man or woman in us would typically turn inward.'
 I just love this counsel! It is funny to see the effect that this study has begun to have on me and my companions. Like for instance, after Elder Giboin read the talk he took the last orange from the fridge and sat down. He looked a it really funny like and sighed/goaned and turned to me and Elder Paramalingam and offered half of the orange to each of us. Although he really didn't want to he realized that the character of Christ would have thought about someont else before he thought about himself and he offered us his orange. It was a cool experience and we have had serveral others like it. I had a work over with a poor missionary who is fighting depression because he feels that he has recieved revelation that he needs to go home and marry his girlfriend. The poor lad went home for a time for medical reasons and found his girlfriend with someone else. Before he came back out they had patched things back up and were prepareing for their future. Well this and that happened and he came back out and now he feels that he is ignoreing counsel from God. He said that at conference a few talks made him feel that he should go home and others made him think that he should stay. The poor kid is in a proper state of confusion. (I'm glad i dont have to deal with his lot!). The experience taught me a valuable lesson. Proverbs 15 says 'The man may devise his plans, but the Lord directs His steps.' Yes it is absolutly important that we make plans and prepare and seek revelation as we do it, but always remember that the Lords way is higher then our ways and we will find ourselves somewhere we did not expect to be. The important thing to do at this time is be a good boy/girl remember and keep our covenants and lift where we stand. A missionary may find himself in a land he has never expected to be doing what he thought he would never do and all he has to do is what the Lord expects him and all will be well. a Young father may find himself in a new job and a difficult calling that he had not asked for but all he has to do is what the Lord expects him and all will be alright. Parents may find themselves wearing black on a cold rainy day in a graveyard, but all they have to do is look to the Lord and do what he expects and all with be right. I studied dependablilty earlier this week and I am so grateful that God is faithful. I'm so glad that He is perfect and will never let us down or leave us alone. If we can but hold out to the end, all will be well. 'All that is unfair about this life will be made right through the Atonement of Jesus Christ' I think that is in PMG somewhere. I forgot where i was going with this. Well I hope and pray that this missionary will make the right choice what ever it is. Yesterday was a beautiful day and we went out street contacting in Hyde Park. We ran into to beautiful Chinese students (Paul and Clare) and they sat down with us and we taught them all about the Plan of Salvation. I love when some one understands the plan and it just clicks. In an instant when their minded are enlightened and the spirit teaches them what our human imperfections can not it always seems to be the same reaction. Their eyes get bight and wide, their mouth opens in amazement and they smile out of joy. Then the questions come and they trurly begin to hunger. Its glorious.

Me I'm doing fine. I won't lie at times I'm really tired and I'm understanding why all my companions who when home said what they said. I'm not done yet, I promise is will still work hard and do the best I can. I love it when you receive strength for the Lord and He carrys you when you stuggle. I love this work.
Elder B. Solomon II I'm so excited for you! write in a journal every day. Allow yourself to record your spirit and the feelings and excitement that you are experienceing. Remember that the Lord cares more about who you are becomeing then He does about what you are doing. Like wise record the most important things.