This was an amazing week to say the least! We had a lot of meetings which seemed to all be focused on one topic... CHANGE! We had a zone meeting all on how to make this work more exciting and the only way to do that is to give your will to the will of God and he will direct you in all things. The entire focus of the meeting was being "The Fourth Missionary" which I will attach to the email. It is an amazing talk and for all you missionaries if you are struggling, doing well, want new ideas, or if you are at all a missionary this is a great talk to read and study!!
After this meeting we had a district meeting the next day on a similar topic of the fact that this in not "Our Work" but it is "God's Work". Then right after the meeting I got a phone call from President Pitt asking how I was doing and what I needed to do to be a better missionary and a better trainer. And to close it all off Elder S. Gifford Nielsen came to our mission on Friday! I'm gonna take a little from the notes we were sent by are mission president on what he talked about.
1. You are here, divinely called of God. He took us through that process. This is the simplest time of your life. Be filled with light, for we can’t let Satan win. Although he has great power, you cannot let him win.2. What is your perfect day? Ether 12:2 It should be that you can’t be restrained because the spirit is so strong inside you. You want no one to miss this chance of knowing who they are.
3. Have you given your all, like the missionary who got no letters, no packages, no support from home, but wore himself out in the work of the Lord. He didn’t care but just worked hard. Will your shoes be bronzed by your stake president? If you aren’t giving your mission your all then change it right now. Now it the time to change.
4. Never be a challenge to the ward or branch, just a blessing. What can I do for them? Do we always leave a thank you note, take them flowers, contribute to the meal? Service is huge.
5. Preparations for war. Even though there were war-like conditions for the Nephites, this was a happy time for the people. Sometimes it seems we are challenged a lot and it feels like a war. But this should be the happiest time in our lives. This is your time with the Savior. Make it the happiest. There will never be a time like this.
6. Don’t just “stay” on your mission, get totally engulfed in every aspect of it. You can’t afford to waste one minute.
7. Ordinances and the associated Covenants: Baptism—Power to remit sins; Confirmation—Power to receive personal revelation from heaven; Priesthood—Power to act in the name of Christ; Endowment—Power to become a God; Sealings—Power to be a God. All ordinances have power to unlock the door while Covenants have the power to keep the access open.
8. What is Real Growth? Conversions where people understand and accept the gospel, then come into the waters of baptism and keep going. The other is you—being really converted and never living outside your covenants.
9. You are to be Master Teachers!
10. The Challenge: If there is anything that is not right in your life, FIX IT NOW!
Needless to say all I want to do is CHANGE and to FIX IT NOW!!!
I have been lost as to why we couldn't find more people to teach, why I haven't seemed to be having as much fun as I did at the beginning of my mission, and just so many ideas going through my head. And after this week I have found the answer. I need to fix the things I have been doing wrong as a missionary. And I feel like that is true for all of us in life. If we are not enjoying things we are doing, if we are struggling, if anything is going wrong, or even if it is going right, we must evaluate ourselves and find what we need to fix and what we can change. Often, it is coming closer to Christ, turning to him, and giving your will to him. As we do this we will find more happiness in all that we do and that has begun to happen this week!
After the zone meeting this week we went tracting and with my change of heart and change of mentality we went out tracting, and you know what happened at the first door we knocked on? We were let in and found a new investigator. This week we also taught more than we have most of the weeks we have been here and we got Jenna and Patty to come back to church again, and the best part is... They asked if they could come because they wanted to. I'm so excited for the weeks to come as I begin to truly change myself, and grow to love this work even more.
If any of you are struggling, please take time to turn to God and ask him for help and ask him what you can change and what you can do to come closer to him. I promise you that you will find happiness and peace and joy as you do so!
I love you all so very much! You are all so amazing!
Love, Elder Ryan Carter
"God is bound to love us--not that we are good, but because He is good." -President Bruce G. Pitt