What a week! I was reminded this week, through being taught from on high, that we need to keep it simple. Think about the job of the Apostles. Back in Christ's time, they were to keep the doctrine pure and simple, for that is how it is. That is how God teaches us. To our understanding. Very simple, and very profoundly. The simple truths of the gospel are what the Spirit will testify of. God is our Heavenly Father, and we are His children. He loves us, and wants to communicate with us. We can do that through sincere prayer! He has a body of flesh and bone, and because of this, He weeps with us when we suffer, and rejoices with us when we choose the right. He has provided a way for us to return to live with Him after this life, and we can do so through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. Boom. That's Preach My Gospel.
We aren't called to teach about crazy elaborate church history, the specifics of the Levitical Priesthood, or where God lives in the universe...quite frankly because that isn't pure doctrine. What I mean by pure doctrine is something that genuinely hleps us to live the gospel of Jesus Christ and fulfill God's plan for us. Faith, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end. Boom. That's all we need in this life. Basic truth that helps us.
As Alma, my Book of Mormon hero, says, "by small and simple things are great things brought to pass" (Alma 37:6) Whoa. THAT'S profound, Alma. And...wait a moment...simply put! See, the key to sharing the gospel is not to be the smartest guy in the room. Human wisdom and logic are cool, and all. But guess who has more knowledge than all y'all combined: our Heavenly Father!
Yeah...ANYTHING in life can be logically broken down. Heck, even anti-Mormon literature is logical. But is it the truth? Of course not!
When we are talking with people about the Church, about our beliefs, what are we telling them? Are we in Preach My Gospel every day, do we truly KNOW the doctrine we are called to teach? The Spirit will be with you if you testify of God's love to someone. He might not be there when you start trying to assert you "mighty" knowledge of the obsure events of early church history. You know what I'm talking about. The stuff that doesn't matter in the long run. So prioritize. Study what our prophets and apostles have shown to us as truth, as basic doctrine. Don't know where to find it?
Oh...no worries. It's a little book called Preach My Gospel! Study it, believe it, learn it, love it, and teach it. The Spirit will be with you, and you will be able to keep pace with the Hastening of the Work.
This week, I was privileged enough to attend Missionary Leadership Council (MLC) in Richmond. All of the zone leaders and sister training leaders were gathered together from across the province with President and Sister Burt and his Assistants. It was an AMAZING experience. The conference was about 9 hours long...and yet it felt like a minute! We discussed the needs of the mission, and some ways that we could be more unified across the mission in this wonderful work. It was cool to be a part of it. I felt so inadequate, though, walking in among these legendary missionaries. When I walked into the meetinghouse, I saw my trainer himself, Elder Orr! What a reunion. We reminisced about the Duncan days and my greenie moments. He's in Prince George. It's cold up there... It was an awesome experience, and I found out from Elder Swallow (my old zone leader in Nanaimo) that Will is doing super well as the new Assistant Ward Mission Leader in Duncan! I feel too blessed to have met Will... I am honored and humbled to be here in Burnaby. The ward is awesome. Speaking of which...at MLC, I was called up by the bishopric and asked if I could give a talk in sacrament meeting. "You know I can!" So...I prepared a little ten minute talk. And when I got up on the podium, I totally forgot my talk, and instead when on for twenty minutes on how memebers can do missionary work as well, and related it to my topic... It was, like, kind of overly passionate. But they ate it up! So...there you go, eh? It was a fun experience. The members were kind of shell-shocked afterwards though... I felt a little bad that I went over, but I was like..."This is the most important topic, so...I'll be excused..."
The work is going super well. We're teaching a guy named K who had some nerve damage in his arm. Going for a baptismal date tonight! And we just found a brand new family to teach yesterday. C & J and their three little kids! They're so cool. Our super solid investigator, L, moved to Vancouver...she's getting baptized in two weeks into that ward... So, that's amazing! Metro Town mall is insane. I love it. I love this work, and I know that it is our Heavenly Father's work. We aren't just an organization going out and getting numbers! This is literally Heavenly Father using His children as His servants to gather all of His children together, to return to Him. So go out and be friends with everyone, and show them how much this gospel can change your life! Wahoo! Have a great week, everybody!
P.S. - Shout out to Island Ward Activity Girls/Sister Baxter!!! That package was awesome! Sunshine on a rainy day. We have already devoured the food, and it was amazing! You are all amazing, and you made my day! :D
Me and Elder Spencer devouring American Oreos...thank you Sister Baxter!!!!!
Me and my father in the mission, Elder Orr, at MLC. #blasttothepast
The first time Elder Spencer has had Oreos with milk...African children probs ;)
We're 2 weeks away from a Skype call with Elder Stock!