Monday, January 26, 2015

Keeping Your Head in the Game

Well, this week was nice. We didn't do anything too exciting, but it was ok. I will send some pictures of the waterfall we found though. Hopefully. If I remember by the end of this email.  (He must have forgotten about the pictures.)
Anyways, this week, we have been doing a lot of finding and a lot of traveling just for the sake of talking to people along the way and it's been pretty boring. I've had a lot of time to think about other things. So I've mostly just thought about going home, because it's exciting, but then I discovered why missionaries always frown upon thinking about going home. It's a waste of time, and it's distracting. It's not bad to go home at the end of your mission. It's not even bad to think about it sometimes, but I was thinking about it a lot and when those random people on the streets ran into us, I was not thinking, ooooh I want to baptize him! I was thinking, hmm, after I finish being rejected by him I will decide what video game I will play first when I get home. Haha.
So I have been lowering my expectations because I don't want my video game ideas to be interrupted, and that is not good. If I don't think that man on the street is going to listen to me, he certainly isn't going to think he's going to listen to me. If it's not a desire for me who knows about the gospel, it's certainly not going to be one for him who doesn't know anything. So this week I have learned about desires. If you haven't already, get your scriptures ready. This emails going to be full of them. Kinda.
So Alma the Younger saw an angel. And it called him to repentance. And he started getting a little distracted thinking about what his "increase" could be and less about what his "sacrifice" was. (D&C 117:13) And he wanted to be an angel, instead of a missionary. But then he caught himself and he said, 
But behold, am man, and do sin in my wish; for ought to be content with the things which the Lord hath allotted unto me.
ought not to harrow up in my desires the firm decree of just God, for know that he granteth unto men according to their desire,whether it be unto death or unto life; yea, know that he allotteth unto men, yea, decreeth unto them decrees which are unalterable,according to their willswhether they be unto salvation or unto destruction.
Yea, and know that good and evil have come before all men; he that knoweth not good from evil is blamelessbut he that knoweth‍ good and evil, to him it is given according to his desires, whether he desireth good or evil, life or death, joy or remorse of conscience.
Now, seeing that know these things, why should desire more than to perform‍ the work to which have been called?   (Alma 29:3-6)
He realized that his desires were not aligned with God's. We recieve according to our desires and our faith, and if we have desires to do what's right, God will give us what we want, but we need to align our will with his. Enos and Nephi learned the same thing. (1 Nephi 11:6Enos 1:12) Sometimes, we don't get our prayers answered because we don't have the faith, but do we ever miss an answer because our desire isn't there? We have to have "real intent" if we want God to help us. (Moroni 10:3-5)
So focus on what God wants. Think about that, and you can change your desires to match his, and you can have all of the life and joy that God is willing to give you. (Alma 29:5)
Sorry for the long email, bye

Elder Ferguson

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