This week nothing super exciting happened it's sad to say. We got punted a lot so we didn't get to teach a whole lot of lessons, and we had exchanges. This next week should hopefully be a lot better, but we wrapped up a lot of our really good progressing investigators with the baptisms we had, so we are trying to find some more. Tuesday Elder Abel had to go to a different city for immigration stuff and came back with books from the mission president for us, and all 4 of us in the house read it until we had to go to bed. It was from this man Scott Marshall and is just awesome! It had a ton of really good techniques for talking to people and missionary work and relying on faith. But one of the quotes from I can't remember who, I think Spencer W. Kimball said "God does watch over us and does notice us, but it usually through someone else that he meets our needs."
I really thought a lot about that, and I think it helps us realize how much we are blessed, and the source of all blessings come from Heavenly Father, through other people. That is the way he operates, that is the way that he has always operated. When we don't think that we are receiving enough blessings or our prayers aren't being answered, they really are. He is really always watching over us, and he loves us. A recent convert we spoke with asked us the question why does Heavenly Father give us trials, or allow bad things to happen. I think that is the hardest question to answer, but as I went home and thought about it, I thought of how Heavenly Father, is just that, our Father. So when kids are trying to learn to ride a bicycle, what happens?? They have to fall, but they have to get up, and maybe they will fall again. There is really no other way to learn to do things without messing up or failing first, and with a bike, sometimes we fall and hurt ourselves. Why do parents allow that to happen? Because they know messing up is critical in learning. They of course try and help you not get seriously hurt, but sometimes you may get a scratch or something, but it is necessary to learn. Why do they have rules? Why do they not let you eat a ton of sweets when you are young or play in the street when the children see no harm in it. Because they have more knowledge, and children just don't understand the bigger picture yet, it isn't until perhaps much later that they see that the rules put in place were to punish them, not let them have fun, but to keep them safe. And that you can have just as much fun through keeping the rules. But it isn't until much later we see that rules are necessary. The same with commandments for us. We cannot see them as restrictions but as protection from Heavenly Father, because He knows what is going to keep us safe. We have to trust in Him, and understand that we do not know all.
This week as well we taught a lot of lessons about the Book of Mormon, and one thing that people always ask is why we are called mormons. It is a great question, and one reason I love Tagalog. In English, people may see The Book of Mormon as another book for mormons, the book of mormons. But in Tagalog if you were to say the book of mormons you would say "Ang Aklat ng mga mormon" But in tagalog The Book of Mormon is "Ang Aklat Ni Mormon" .
'Ni' indicates that it is the possession of a person. So it is the book of a man named mormon, or Mormon's book.
That is why we are called "Mormons" and I really loved teaching and testifying about The Book of Mormon and love that we have it. It is through The Book of Mormon that people can know if our message is really true. How is there anything better than that. They don't need to believe what I am saying, but can find out for themselves. There is evidence of the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ right there for them to see.
I just love that. And I just am so full of desire for people to read it and find out for yourselves. In that book that was given to us by the mission president it talks about the uniqueness of the message and it lists all of these really powerful, convincing things why the church is true. It's really cool. But the thing that I can't get over is how it says that every church, no matter what church it is, people go to their church because they believe it is the most correct church on the earth. Why would people go to a second most correct church? I thought that was pretty cool, I never really thought about that. So, I thought how much we take the restoration for granted and what a unique, different idea it is about the restoration.
Jesus Christ came to earth to perform the atonement, teach, be and example, and establish his church. He gave apostles the priesthood, and after the people were so wicked that they killed their own savior, and rejected him, the apostles tried to maintain the church, but eventually they too were killed. The priesthood was lost. The priesthood is the authority to act in God's name, to receive instructions. If you do not have the authority, you cannot act in God's name. If you were a doctor, you cannot operate without a license, even if you are skilled, why would people go with you, a second best. If you were as good as a regular doctor, you would have a license. With the priesthood gone, and the apostles taken from the earth, many churches started forming from good people trying to find the truth. Joseph Smith was confused to why there were so many churches and had a question about which one to join. He just wanted to know which to join, which was the most correct so he could go. He prayed, and when he prayed Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ appeared to him, and Jesus Christ told him to not join any of them, because they were all wrong. Why were they all wrong, even though the people were good people trying to know the truth? Because there was no priesthood or authority. The evidence that Joseph Smith Restored the same Church that Jesus Christ established when he was on the earth is through the Book of Mormon. Through reading it we can pray and ask Heavenly Father if the book is what it says it is, Another Testament of Jesus Christ. I just am so filled with fire about it, I know this is true, I have prayed about it. That is seriously all we ask. If you really want to know why there are so many churches, and which is the most correct, I encourage you to read the Book of Mormon with the question in your heart if it is true, and be willing to act when you receive and answer.
My testimony has really been strengthened of this message this week, and there are so many questions that are answered through the restoration.
Thank you for all of your support, and I hope that you will all try this week and everyday to strengthen your testimony,
Elder Nathan Rock