Good morning Cubs and Shrubs, and welcome to another installment of: "Elder Brown walks around in the Desert"
Highlights of this week:
- A Huge Fire RIPS through Southern California. No damage was done to our area, but half of it was super smokey and ash would sometimes fall (but only in about half of the area. You crossed one street and the air quality changed on a dime)
- Our investigator Jonathan is still progressing well, came to church, is reading the book of mormon, gave up substances for the Word of Wisdom in a cool way, which I'll mention later, and is just doing awesome! He's super excited for his baptism on September 3rd!
- I took 2nd place in the ward horseshoe tournament. (Won the semi-finals in the most intense game that went into overtime because it's 'win by 2' and we just kept scoring! But I WON WITH A RINGER BABY! THE DAGGER TO THE HEART OF MATT GARZA!) I lost to Dan. (figures)
- DAN HAS A BAPTISMAL DATE! LITERALLY THE BEST PART OF THE WEEK!!!
Also, we watched the full length Joseph Smith movie with the Dan, Reatha and Yvonne, and it was SO POWERFUL! Usually Reatha and Yvonne are quite chatty ALL the time, but after the movie finished, you could see the profound impact that the spirit had had on them, testifying that he was a prophet! And while I had seen it before, (many times) the spirit reconfirmed to me the divine authenticity of this work!
Also, Jonathan... WOO! What a stud. I flipping love that man. So, we go and teach the Word of Wisdom and literally he struggles with 4 of the 5 he told us. Smoking, Alcohol, tea, coffe (no drugs though, thank heavens) and while he was willing to give up smoking and alcohol, he was not willing to give up tea and coffee. We felt prompted to share the story of Naaman, the Leper who doubted when he was asked to do something as silly as bathe in the River Jordan 7 times, but how The Lord blessed him anyway! While it stuck with him, he still wasn't willing. But he told us he would pray about it.
Then, about an hour later when we were heading home for the night, he calls (for two reasons, actually, one being I left my Book of Mormon there like a Goon) to tell us that he prayed and felt really strong that he needed to give up tea and coffee and he would do it! Hooray! He loves the temple and looking at mormon.org and listening to MOTAB and the whole shebang. He says when he looks at the temple he can feel that God is there and he wants to be where God is! Holy Cow! What a stud! I'm so pumped for his baptism.
This week, I got to teach Priesthood and I taught on President Nelson's talk in last General Conference: The Price of Priesthood Power. (or for those in the room who didn't have the priesthood, it could similarly be compared to Spiritual Power) He compares the difference between Power and Authority to being like an organ. The organ is the authority, but whether or not it's plugged into a power source is what actually makes the music! So it's important for us as Priesthood holders to not just have the authority and treat the Priesthood like a plaque on the wall "Oh, there's my degree so I'm educated, there's the time I ran a marathon, there's the time I met the President, there's my Priesthood..." But rather, we should treat it like staying in shape! We may have run a marathon at one point and been super powerful in regards to our Priesthood, but are we still in shape? Because it doesn't matter if we were ONCE a powerful missionary, or we were ONCE in the Elders quorum presidency, or if we ONE TIME had 100% home teaching, how is our Preisthood Power RIGHT NOW? Are we still living up to the promises we made?
He then outlines 5 ways to increase our Power.
1)Pray to find ways to increase our Power
2)Study to find ways to increase our Power
3)Attend the Temple regularly, asking sincerely to learn about Priesthood power and authority,
5)Loving and cherishing our wives. (or family in general for those of us who are still single)
So my commitment to them is the same I give to you! Pick one of those 5 and work on that this week! I know if you do, you'll find more joy.
I love you all so much! Church is true!