England London Mission

England London Mission

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Faith isn't faith until it is tested!

A good week.  We have been so busy with lessons and things this week we didn’t have a lot of time for finding.  Which I am not complaining, it’s been nice.  Probably one of the first times in  my mission.  We are pretty busy with things. The area is really doing good right now. I am so grateful for the success we are having.

Our investigators are doing really good.  One is now to the point of thinking there is a God, wasn't sure at all when we first met them. This one has been praying and following a prayer really felt the spirit this week.   Another one had a friend there who challenged the existence of God at the beginning of the lesson, but then started asking questions as we taught.  Finished teaching another one the last of the lessons in preparation for their upcoming baptism.  Also did a few visits with some less actives in the area.  Another one is waiting for a divorce to come through before being able to move forward. One was telling us about standing up and defending the church when confronted with it at school.  Some of them came to church this week.  We also went home teaching with a member in the ward. It was pretty cool! We showed up and he was just like the Elders have a great message about 2 Nephi 9 for us today.  It went good.   One of the members we went to visit this week has his mother visiting. She baked a cottage pie, it was super good! 

Living close to a lake gives us a chance to see so much wildlife!  One day we took some cheese to feed the birds. They just came all around us. It was kinda crazy, geese eating out of your hand.  But it was cool, you would throw it up and the seagulls would fly and pick it out of the air. 

One day while on splits with the District Leader we stopped by the Sisters flat as they weren’t feeling that good. They were complaining about only have lights in half of their flat for a week.  We thought it was probably just a breaker and so checked it.  We were right, now they have light. 

Also went to the London area for p-day after shopping and studies.  It like an outdoor street market place.  There was a place where they have catfish, that are a part of the piranha family. So you put your feet in the pool and they eat all the dead hard skin away. It was the weirdest feeling ever. But your feet are sooo smooth when you get done. 

Then we went and saw the Eye, Big Ben and some other places in London.   It was a good day, pretty long, but good.

This week I found a new favorite scripture, well one of them.  1 Nephi 7:12  “Yea, and how is it that ye have forgotten that the Lord is able to do all things according to his will, for the children of men, if it so be that they exercise faith in him?  Wherefore, let us be faithful to Him”

Also this week studying about the “Whole Armor of God” as found in Ephesians 6.  Here’s what was in the study guide says about it.

“Now notice the nature of the armour that [Paul] puts on the man whom he is now preparing to withstand the powers of darkness. He said, ‘Therefore stand, having your loins girt about with truth.’ Now the loins is that part of the body between the lower rib and the hip in which you will recognize are the vital organs which have to do with reproduction … he was saying that that part of the body was one of the most vulnerable. We should have our loins girt about with armour. And then the next we would have a breastplate over the heart. Now in the scriptures you will remember that the heart has always been used to typify our conduct. … And so we would have a breastplate over the heart.
“And then he said we would have the feet shod with the kind of armour that would protect our feet, suggesting the feet as the objectives, the goals of life which we should have [guarded] by some kind of armour and protected from getting off on the wrong foot. And finally we should have a helmet on our heads. Now there we have the four parts of the body that the apostle Paul saw to be the most vulnerable to the powers of darkness. The loins, typifying virtue, chastity. The heart typifying our conduct. Our feet, our goals or objectives in life, and finally our head, our thoughts.
“Now the kind of armour that was to protect us is even more interesting. … We should have our loins girt about with truth. What is truth? Truth, the Lord said, was knowledge of things as they are, things as they were and things as they are to come. … What is going to guide us along the path of proper morals or proper choices? It will be the knowledge of truth. There must be a standard by which we measure our conduct, else how shall we know which is right? And how shall we know which is wrong? … ‘Our loins shall be girt about with truth,’ the prophet said.
“And the heart, what kind of a breastplate shall protect our conduct in life? We shall have over our hearts a breastplate of righteousness. Well, having learned truth we have a measure by which we can judge between right and wrong and so our conduct will always be gauged by that thing which we know to be true. Our breastplate to cover our conduct shall be the breastplate of righteousness.
“With what shall we protect our feet, or by what shall we gauge our objectives or our goals in life? All through the scriptures there runs a phrase suggested by the kind of armour the Apostle Paul would put upon the feet. Listen to what he says: ‘Your feet should be shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace.’ (Ephesians 6:15.) Interesting? What is the gospel of peace? The whole core and center of the gospel of peace was built around the person of Him who was cradled in the manger. … How fortunate are you if in your childhood in the home of your father and mother you were taught the doctrine of repentance, faith in Christ, the Son of the living God; the meaning of baptism and what you gain by the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost. Fortunate is the child who has been taught to pray and who has been given those steps to take on through life. Feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace! …
“And then finally the helmet of salvation. Did you ever hear of that kind of helmet? The helmet of salvation. What is salvation? Salvation is to be saved. Saved from what? Saved from death and saved from sin. …
“… When those two things are missing from this earth and when it has been sanctified and cleansed of its impurity, this shall be the place of salvation. On this earth will be the celestial kingdom, for there will be no more sin, no more death, no more crying, for all the former things are done away. By whom? By the atonement of the Lord Jesus Christ. The apostle Paul said, in effect, ‘A helmet of salvation shall guide our thinking all through our days.’ …
“Well, now, the apostle Paul went one step further. He didn’t leave the man just with the armour on and expect him to cope against an army, seen or unseen. He had his armoured man holding in his hand a shield and in his other hand a sword, which were the weapons of those days. That shield was the shield of faith, and the sword was the sword of the spirit which is the Word of God. I can’t think of any more powerful weapons than faith and a knowledge of the scriptures in the which are contained the Word of God. One so armoured and one so prepared with those weapons is prepared to go out against the enemy [and] is more to be feared than the enemies of the light.” (Harold B. Lee, “Feet Shod with the Preparation of the Gospel of Peace,” Speeches of the Year, 1954, pp. 2–4, 6–7.)

Thanks everyone for everything!

I suspect this week will go fast.  We already have some service projects set up, a birthday party to attend, Halloween parties to go to, and we are carving pumpkins with a recent convert.  Also have interviews with the President this week.  I suspect that I will be moving next transfer, so don’t send letters after Nov. 5th so I get them in case I move.

Love, Elder Stevenson

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