This week was rather slow, if you look at the numbers. There were some pretty epic highlights, though.First, just a thought. I have been a missionary for over a year. I am immensely grateful for the Spirit with which my benevolent and merciful Father in Heaven has blessed me insofar, and I find incredible the quantity and grandness of the things I've learned. I have learned how to work when I feel like I can't anymore. I have learned to consecrate even my thoughts to the work of the Lord and His glory (I am nowhere near perfect in that yet--ongoing goal). I have learned what is required for and how to arrange papers for the marriage of a family. I have learned how to be completely fearless in the midst of seemingly dangerous or precarious situations (spiritually precarious, more often than not). Most of all, however, I have learned that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the only true and living God. I have come to begin to comprehend the depths of his mercy and the endlessness of His desire to trust in and forgive me. I have come to realize how I am truly nothing, and that if I fail to strive with all diligence to be exactly obedient, I become an impediment and even an enemy to God and His work. I have come to know by miraculous experience that nothing can impede the rolling forth of the stone cut out without hands, and that I can either be a part of the stone or I can be crushed thereby. I know that I am a literal son of God, and that my potential, as is all of ours, is ETERNAL. Not just endless; ETERNAL ("of God, Godlike"). Our Father wants to bless ALL of His children with the restored gospel in its plentitude, and each of us is called to warn our neighbor (seeing as we have been warned). I am learning, as I am now applying it more, the value and power of sincere, heartfelt, open prayer, and how that power can be applied to me in any place at any moment with any righteous end.
I got to see Conference in English, no subtitles, because about half of the zone is training and we were able to coordinate with the stake president to set up an English room. It was great, since last year I saw it in Spanish.
So you guys know, Hurricane Matthew seems to have missed our part of the island, so don't worry. As of last night, we weren't going to be able to leave the house today or, but it only rained and the hurricane isn't too close, so they lifted the caution.
Although I've always taken notes and done my best to make conference serious for me, I feel like I was utterly blown away this conference. Talk after talk about sincere prayer and true dedication to the Lord (which I am particularly working on), having a proper gospel focus (not overlooking the mark and making the BoM the keystone of my testimony), not comparing myself to others; there was even a talk in there that was written just to make Mom so grateful she'd cry (during K. Brett Nattress's talk, I thought of you, Mom).
Favorite talks (this is going to be really hard):
Carol F. McConkie
J. Devn Cornish
Quentin L. Cook (specifically the "looking beyond the mark" bit)
Dean M. Daniels
David A. Bednar
Ronald A. Rasband
I need to stop the list there, or I'm going to write the entire conference down. XD
One quick story before I close. We had an interventionwith a lady in our area named D****. She and her daughter are preparing for baptism, but she needed to stop smoking and drinking. She has been getting an allergic reaction now every time she drinks, and has taken that as a sign that she should not drink. We put up sticky notes with "don't smoke; love, the missionaries" all over the spot where she normally smokes, and took all the cigarettes and coffee that she had left in the house. From onward, she has neither smoked nor drank coffee nor drank alcohol. She got to come to General Conference and LOVED it. We moved her baptismal date to later in October, because she is making plans to get married and wants her future husband and his daughter to receive the lessons from us and get baptized at the same time. Miracles. We suddenly have 4 stone-set baptismal dates in the month of October and have found 2 new, already interested people to teach.
Love you guys! Be smart and safe, and set at least 3 goals for yourselves of things you will better or change as a result of conference. The Lord will fill you with His Spirit.