Hello friends and family,
This week was a quite special week for me. It was one of those times on my mission that I know I will always remember.
To start out, Monday we met with our friend whom I gave my church clothes to. (again we are asked not to disclose names of people for certain reasons) He is having a rough time in his life. He has a poor job and puts all his money towards his sick mother in the hospital in whom may pass on very soon. The Doctors gave him the decision on whether to let her live or not and he doesn't know what to do. We met Monday and shared D&C 9 with him. As he inquires of the Lord, and truly ponders about it, he has the power to receive his own revelation. I've never loved that man more than I do now. He left in tears and the biggest amount of faith I've ever seen in such a small Japanese man.
Thursday was another great day as well. We have been inside because my companion still isn't doing well, but had a lesson planned at 5 o`clock with a man who came to church the Sunday before. We met with him, asked him why hes coming to church what his beliefs are etc. He explained the feelings he has when he comes. He feels like his life problems are washed away when he attends. We taught him the Plan of Salvation due to some things that have occurred in his life, and taught him the order of prayer and how it can bless his life. All I can say is the joy, happiness, and love I felt for this man after hearing him offer up his first ever prayer to his Father in Heaven. It was a tender moment for all of us to behold HIS joy after doing so.
Friday was zone training meeting. Learned some good stuff from the zone leaders about prayer and using it in our everyday work. Later that night we attended a ward ping pong night. You already know I freakin owned everyone! (sike, come on they're Japanese) It was great to build relationships with the ward and work closer with them! Elder Grossen was wrecked after that which basically immobilize us the entire next day :( I hate seeing him suffer :/
Therefore, Saturday we were inside all day as my companion was sleeping trying to get better. I studied the heck out of the scriptures. before I share what I learned, Sunday was a great day. Sunday morning, I woke up feeling very meek, and lowly in heart. I prayed hard and fervent to be filled with the love of the Savior and to have a good day at church that day.
Boy did he answer my prayer...
My companion was assigned to speak that day so he beasted it out and went to church. And he gave one of the most powerful talks on the atonement I`ve ever felt. What I felt coming off of that talk, was Gods love. Never before have I ever been filled with such immense love from on high before. It was overwhelming to the point where I was crying so hard in sacrament meeting. I suddenly saw everyone around me for who they are, and loved them with everything I possessed. Some members can be a little interesting at times, but I saw through it all. I saw them for who they are, the way Christ sees all his children. I felt this sudden urge to just want to hug everyone and share that love I was feeling within. To tell everyone from my heart the things I know to be true in the gospel, and my true feelings and love for the people around me, my companion, my Savior, my family, everyone. We were able to talk to an investigator and help him feel our love after church, he accepted the invitation to be baptized :) Pray he can get things figured out and find a date very soon! right now its planned for his birthday in July :)
This brings me to one of the great things I learned through my study. And it is about the simple yet ever so powerful principle of love. Id like you to go grab your scriptures, pull it up on your smart phone, do what ever you gotta do to get these words before your eyes~
Please turn to section 11 of the Doctrine and Covenants and find verse 12, and read that for a minute.
I came to realize that this scripture, is true love. True love is something that comes from the God head. Its something that does not just happen. Its given to us through our work and efforts to obtain such a power of love. When we come to the point where we are filled with this love, or as the scripture states,"and this is my Spirit", its that power that inspires and motivates us to do the things stated in the verse, "That which leadeth to good- yea, to do justly to walk humbly, to judge righteously...". Or in other words, its what leads us to choose the right. GOD. IS. LOVE. When we come unto Him, and feel of His love, we then begin to do these things and come closer to Him so long as we follow that inspiration from the Spirit.
When one shares that love with those around him, others will feel that love and desire to do the same. When our love is pure and true and eternal, like that of Jesus Christ, others will feel that, shoot, they will SEE it in your countenance. When one feels the Spirit, they feel of Gods love. As you show that love purely from the heart to those around you, it will then bring the both of you, whether it be a husband and wife, parent to child, friend to friend, missionary to investigator, it will bring the both of you closer to our Father in Heaven.
One may ask," What is true love? How can I show it?"
True love is Charity. Charity is the pure love of Christ. Charity is a Spiritual Gift. Its something one has to work for through constant prayer and work on their part to obtain it. "knowledge puffeth up, but Charity edifieth" (1 Cor. 8:1). Someone may be so sly with their words, they may know everything, they may make you seem like something is good, they might be a person or the great missionary who knows this gospel, but without charity, it'll never change or touch that person. The person is NOTHING without it. The word edify means to build up, to strengthen, to unify, etc. That love will inspire to choose the right! Perfect example! It will EDIFY them. One who has BOTH, has the advantage, for Knowledge is the advantage.
Charity is essentially loving others the way Christ did. He suffered the Atonement, "he laid down his life for his friends", did the impossible. Why? Because He loves us. He was patient and long suffering to those around Him. He understood them. He knew them. He was forgiving and didn't allow His love to seize at faults and differences in others or their mistakes. He truly and purely loved them.
As Mormon states in his epistle to his son Moroni," if ye have not charity, ye are nothing"
Pray always to be filled with His Spirit, with His matchless love. Pray for the gift of charity. Let love be your motive in all you do and ye are bound to see marvelous things in your life. As you apply and strive to love and view things and people with an eye of love, your relationships with those loved ones, with friends, and family will strengthen, You will begin to feel more peace and happiness in your life, and most of all, you will know that you are a child of God, and that He loves you.
Remember to always share that love. The best kind of missionary work is not sharing all you know about the gospel, its simply showing true love from the heart (bearing testimony and sharing your love, or your spirit from God to others). I've seen it first hand in helping others come unto Christ here in Japan. I exhort you to do what you can to be doing these things. All us on this earth are children of God, and everyone deserves to feel that love. Us Saints have the "knowledge", we know the gospel. But when we have Charity, we can edify those around us and help them partake of the goodness of this gospel, and to feel the love they need to to.
This week I challenge you all to think of a way you can show love for someone else. Your wife, husband, friend, brother, sister, etc. Show some love and give some service. I promise as you do, you will feel Gods love! and you will be greatly blessed.
I love all of you and hope you have a great week. Keep sending prayers Elder Grossens way!
Until next time!
My chinese friend Cho
At kamogawa river after zone training meeting, famous Ancient samurai execution site
Received an order of Book of Mormons from the mission home the other dayanother pic with Cho
eunited with Elder Hall, hes in my district! SO excited to see him back!! (He was my MTC companion)
ping pong night on friday