Monday, November 23, 2015

Restart That 3 Month Clock Starting Dec 10th - Lauren Secures Another 6 Weeks!!

Mom, before I get started, I talked to President McMullin about my return date, and let's just say I will be back in California with a big hug for you on March 10th!! :D 

Familyyyyy :) 

I could have sworn it was just yesterday that we wrote last, it blows my mind just how fast this time goes by! 

Things here in Salado have been FANTASTIC!! :)  This week we were able to sit in and participate in a few different Zone Conferences and it was such an edifying experience.  I felt like I had just walked out of General Conference... it was THAT good!! :)

In Zone Conference, President McMullin talked about obedience and its importance and then after President had given his portion of the Zone Conference, Hna Farish and I shared a passage of scripture that goes hand in hand with obedience. In 2 Kings 5 from the Old Testament there is a story of a man named Naman (the General for the army of the King of Syria) he was reveered, respected, estimeed by all... but he was also a leper. 

In this passage Naman recieves word from a little servant girl that there is a true prophet of God, who could heal him. Naman left and searched for the prophet and when he found him... he was instructed that in order to be healed of his leprosy, he would have to go and bathe in the dirty River Jordan. (naturally, Naman didn't like that response too much :) Ha). But then, humbling himself, he did what the Lord had told him to do through His prophet... and because of his obedience and faith... he was healed.

This is really a lovely story.... and verse 13 is one that really stood out to me, when Naman first questioned the instruction the prophet had given him,

"And his servants came near, and spake unto him, and said, My father, if the prophet had bid thee do some great thing, wouldest thou not have done it? how much rather then, when he saith to thee, Wash, and be clean?"

If the Prophet of God commanded us some great thing.... wouldn't we do it? Absolutely we would do it. But, if we change one word - the question takes on a new meaning and tests an even deeper level of faith.... If the prophet commanded us some small thing, would we do it?" If the prophet asked us to read our Book of Mormon cover to cover... would we have sufficient faith to fulfill that ask?  If we were told to do our home/visiting teaching assignments.. would we?  If the Lord asked us to hold family home evening once a week... would we?  These small things do add up and they are OH so important.

Far too often we justify with simple excuses, that totally sound legitimate and justifiable. How many times have we caught ourself saying "oh I just didnt have time" or "it's just too hard".  We have all heard those, haven't we? I know I have used those excuses more than once in my life.  Haha.

But in all of the time I have had to really think, and pray and meditate this week... My mind was continually drawn to the Atonement of Jesus Christ. I found myself thinking about the sacrifices He made and the obedience which He showed and how it affects me today. :)

Matthew 26 39  "And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me: nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt."

There on bended knee, in total submission to every human experience possible.... He plead to the Father if there was no other way... but nevertheless,"Thy will be done".   Can you imagine, if in that moment, Christ himself pulled out the same excuses, that we so often do? If he said " But father, it's just too hard" Can you imagine if he only suffered until it was too hard?  Or if he only suffered until He had something better to do, like leave the garden before Judas came and Christ was arrested?

I am so grateful that Christ FULLY and COMPLETELY atoned for my sins. I am so grateful that He didn't do it until the point where it became too hard.  I am grateful for Christ who suffered completely and provided me and you with this atoning sacrifice and not a "partial atonement". Now allowing us all the blessing of returning back to the Father.

Christ was the perfect example of obedience :)   Hebrews 5:8-9 Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.

Obedience brings blessings, exact obedience brings miracles, and obedience is how we show our love for the Father and gratitude for the Son, it is the first law of heaven. :)

I have been so very grateful to learn the importance of obedience here on the mission -- I know that I am still not perfect... (that will take a lifetime and then some :) Haha) but I know that there is no greater satisfaction that comes than from wearing yourself away in the work of the Lord. I love coming home exhausted after a long day of work in the field, knowing that today I did my best to bring to pass the Lords eternal purposes.

Moses 1:39  The path of obedience, the path of discipleship... that is the path that brings true happiness :) 

Life is so much easier when we are obedient! :)

And when we struggle (because that is natural and inevitable), let us always remember those marks in His hands and feet... let us lay our burdens, hurt feelings, and discouraging thoughts all at the feet of the Lord and let Christ (through His Atonement) help change us and help us become better. Through Him we can improve and progress and we can change our hearts and our lives. :)

I love you all!  Go and make someone smile today!! :)

Hermana Fardos

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