Tuesday, November 27, 2012

See Him as He May Become

SAN DIEGO — The first week of the transfer has been great. I still am in Helix Singles Ward. That makes 11 out of 13 transfers in a Young Single Adult ward! So much fun. So much DRAMA! 

Our new companion is Sister Crawford. She is from Wyoming and has actually been out about five months. She is a sweetheart. It is definitely a new challenge being in a threesome companionship, but I love it.

I know a lot of you have and are having challenges right now. I don’t know why all these things happen, but I know it will all work out. I love you all, and I am so excited to be there seeing you become who Heavenly Father wants you to become. That is something that has been on my mind this week, to see others as they may become.

When I first left for my mission, President Homer blessed me that I would be able to see others as they really are and not be afraid of who they appear to be. I thought that was interesting as I started my mission, now I can see what Heavenly Father meant.

Yesterday, we got a text message that said, "What do you believe about gays?" I explained that marriage between a man and woman is ordained of God. We had quite a long chat over text, and it appeared that he was just trying to argue with us. We explained that all of us are children of God, and that the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored to the earth so all mankind can find peace and happiness in this life and live with God in the next. 

Surprisingly to me, James, the texter, agreed to meet.

All that night, I kept thinking about the conference talk by President Monson, "See them as they may become".

President Monson tells a story: during a mission conference, N. Eldon Tanner Interviewed a missionary asking how he had so much success. The Elder replied that he "attempted to baptize every person whom he met. He said that if he knocked on the door and saw a man smoking a cigar and dressed in old clothes and seemingly uninterested in anything — particularly religion — the missionary would picture in his own mind what that man would look like under a different set of circumstances. In his mind, he would look at him as clean-shaven and wearing a white shirt and trousers. And the missionary could see himself leading that man into the waters of baptism. He said, "When I look at someone that way, I have the capacity to bear my testimony to him in a way that can touch his heart"

As our lesson came yesterday, I kept thinking about that. See him as he may become, see him as he may become, SEE him as he may BECOME! We sat down, and I could feel the Holy Ghost calming my heart. We gave him a church tour, and as we were in the chapel, I asked him how he felt. He explained that some missionaries had talked to him and told him to read a part in the Book of Mormon last night and as he did, he felt good, just as he did right then. We continued our lesson bearing testimony of the Holy Ghost and invited him to be baptized, which he accepted. This man can become a priesthood holder in the kingdom of God!

I am so grateful for this lesson I learned. Church is not a museum for saints; it is a hospital for sinners. The Gospel is to heal EVERYONE. President Monson said, "We have the responsibility to see individuals not as they are, but rather as they can become".

I am so grateful for who each of you are:

Mom: You are an amazing example of selfless service. I have lived all my life watching you help and serve and work hard for all of us around you.

Dad: You are organized and motivated. You have taught me the importance of not being asked to do, but to take the initiative to do yourself.

Most importantly, you both are wonderful parents of 2 sons and 2 daughters of a Heavenly King!

Nick: You have a tender heart, and a passion for people. You have taught me what it means to truly love, and be interested in others and make sure they know it. You are an amazing father, brother, husband and friend.

Juli: You are a nurturer. You teach and bless all of us. Your kiddos, your family. You are an amazing teacher in the Kingdom of God.

You both have inspired me and taught me how to raise my children with a love of the gospel. Thank you!

Chris: You are the most diligent person I know. You work hard to achieve your goals, provide for your family, and accomplish your dreams. Because of you, I know I can do hard things!

Hannah: You find joy in the journey. You know how to laugh and help others find joy in the journey too. You are inspiring to both of your families and will continue to bless your future family too.

Sara: You are an example of courage. Not because you are never scared, but because you face all of your trials with faith, and boldness, and dedication. I have never met a braver soul. You inspire me to keep moving forward no matter what. You are my sister, and my friend. You have changed my life forever!

That is only a glimpse of what I see in all of you, and that is not even who Heavenly Father knows you can become! Don’t be content with where you are now. You are meant to be heirs to the Kingdom of Heaven. This life is preparation for eternity.

I want you to know something: how you view each other and how you view the world, is as it will become. If you find the faults, that is all you will see. Let's not look at each other or the world with all our faults. We are meant for more. 

We will one day be in our eternal home, Dad, Mom, Nick, Juli, Chris, Hannah, Sara — You are special and I cant wait to have you for eternity.

I have made a promise to myself that I will NEVER be the reason why someone else can’t change. We all have the potential to become. Let’s help each other see it in ourselves.

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