The last few weeks have been so amazing, with zone conferences and then we had a meeting with an apostle, Elder D. Todd Christofferson, and one of the presidency of the seventy Elder L Whitney Clayton, and two of the quorum of the seventy Elder Claudio R.M. Costa, Elder Leaol and one of the Presiding Bishopric Elder Gerald Caussé. What a wonderful series of meetings we enjoyed. I have a few notes which might be of interest. One cool story at the end of Elder Christoffersons talk He said, " I want to say again that you are our beloved companions," and the translator said, I want to say again that you are our companions and Elder Cristofferson said to the translator in Portuguese, "Our beloved companions," which was really awesome. Also on Sunday Sister Cristofferson gave her talk in Portuguese and she was amazing, She spoke so clearly quickly and perfectly it was inspiring. We got to ride in the security van on Sunday and spoke with the head translator. Found out he was a counselor to dads mission presidents years ago and when he served as a mission president in Brazilia, one of his elders was our new mission president Elder Oliveria. (Who by the way served part of his mission in Cuibá) Also the translator is in the same ward as one of the Sisters Dad and I served with in Boston. Sister Romen is his daughters best friend. Amazing.
One of my favorite hymns is " I´ll go where you want me to go" Because I have come to know He knows better than we do. Consecrating each day to the Lord is a blessing. In the story of the young rich man who asked the Lord what he should do- Remember he was keeping the commandments -He was obedient-and he asked the right question "What lack I yet?" Christ said Come follow me It is all about sacrifice and leaving behind all. Following Jesus Christ is all about going where he wants you to go, saying what he wants you to say, and becoming what He wants you to become. It is all about the consecrated life. That is why before your mission you make covenants in the temple to consecrate your all. In essence that is what we are asking of investigators when they enter the waters of baptism to look toward the temple and become a disciple of Jesus Christ. This is the real evidence of the restored gospel. So everyday you wake up and do all you can to return to Him by doing all you can to please him.
The savior asked his apostles But whom say ye that I am? Peter answered Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. Heavenly Father said to Joseph Smith This is my beloved Son Hear Him. In everything we say or don´t say in everything we do or don´t do. We are saying Whom say ye that I am? and hear Him. We have the most important message on earth. We must live up to the message. Please elevate your thoughts and your deeds to be constant with the message, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God and we have been sent by Him to declare His word.
I use to work in a flower shop which I dearly loved except for one thing after I had been there an hour or two I couldn´t smell the flowers anymore. I had become accustom to the smell. I lived in Argentine where they have a very unique zoo there you can pet the lions, so I asked the zoo keeper how they tamed the lions. He explained When the lion are babies we put them into cages with dogs that are just bigger than the lions the dogs nip and bark at the lions and even though the lion soon grow much bigger and stronger than the dogs. The dogs still nip and bark at the lions. The lions are submissive and tame have forgotten that they are lions. Don´t ever forget who you are, an ambassador of heaven sharing the everlasting gospel of Jesus Christ. How can you always remember? Study his word. When we study the scriptures we not only come to know the scriptures better but we also come to understand the voice of the Lord. Reading the scriptures daily gives us divine guidance. Look at it like a cell phone you charge it up every morning so you can use it all day. Scripture study charges up your spiritual awareness and you need it everyday. Remember Ammon and king Lamonhi. Ammon could discern the kings thoughts. Daily Scripture study will help you discern what people need, where to go, who to teach. Let me share with you a story that happened in a mission we visited. These obedient worthy missionaries felt impressed to go to the area book and check back on someone, so they did and no one was home. Strange they thought, we felt sure this was where we should go. Then they received a spiritual impression to turn down the next street and as they were passing a certain house they both felt we should knock on that door. No one was home, strange they thought we felt strongly this was the Lords plan for us. While still on the door step a women jogged up and said are you Mormon missionaries? I want to be baptised. That probably wont happen to you. Now for the rest of the story. This women had a friend that was a Mormon and for several years they had had discussions on religion. The previous day she and her friend had been talking and her friend had said to this lady, you need to find a church and join it and follow Christ to the best of your ability. To which she replied, OK if your mormon missionaries show up at my house tomorrow I will join your church. Does the Lord know us? This is his church, His work and he wants to help you.
Know that the quorum of the twelve apostles are your companions. We are charged with taking the gospel to all the world, but there are only fifteen of us so we call upon the seventy's there are only 350 of them so we call upon the missionaries but there are only 80,000 of them so we call upon every member of the church to come bear testimony of this everlasting gospel. Now this is the time for you to give all your time to this responsibility. I am proud to be your companion in this great work. You were called by apostolic authority. President Monson called you. You were assigned here by a member of the quorum of the twelve apostles. You are our companions so thank you. I never want to do anything that would embarrass you. I never want to give anyone a reason to disbelieve. To those who have been given this authority to act in the name of God comes responsibility to respect and guard the work of Salvation. In the way you speak, dress, or act represent the Lord. You will have a new misson president, learn from both presidents. That is one of the reasons you were sent here. I had two mission presidents one was Richard G. Scott. I learned from both of them, so be attentive. Watch what they do and say and how they act with others, in and out of the church. The keys are on the earth, when you come to a door you bring with you the kingdom of God, Faith, Repentance and the Gift of the Holy Ghost. This is true whether they believe you or not. Pray for the spirit to inspire you. Invite others to read the scriptures so they can find the spirit and walk the path if repentance that we may all return together. Whenever you teach any concept ask questions to see if they understand. Good questions, so you can help them with their commitments, read with them if they have not read, pray with them if they have not prayed, focus on all the good they have done and find a way to understand. The Book of Mormon is a great tool for conversion because it is the physical evidence that this is Gods restored church. When a person reads the Book of Mormon with a desire to know, their faith is expanded and deepened. Obedience to gospel principles strengthens faith. As your faith grows you will have a greater desire to know the will of God and you will always want to do the will of God. Laws and blessings come from a just God. His course is one eternal round and you can have faith in that kind of a being. Christ pleaded remove this cup from me and our just God said No. He sacrificed so much so we could have this gift of repentance. He sacrificed His Son and the Son offered everything. What could be more sacred and precious than this gift? And we offer this gift to others. We should wake up every morning with the hope and determination to be better. Everyone of us in the quorum of the twelve wish we were better. We are working on it. Don´t get discouraged if you are not perfect today. This progression comes in the course of time. Do whatever is asked of you today you will progress very quickly serving others. Make a note of spiritual impressions you receive from God when you write them down you are showing God you value his guidance. Then He can give us more. That is how he loves us and we love Him. We will become holy, patient, and diligent, having good desires and following His Spiritual direction. When you see the face of Christ he will Smile and embrace you. I bless you with that faith and hope. It is difficult but the reward is coming. I bless you to teach with converting power. Your testimony will be powerful. Those who hear will be able to accept or reject you, but they can´t disbelieve. Serve and you will change for the better, and spiritual development will come automatically. You will have answers to your prayers and angels to watch over you. We think of you as our beloved companions. We all serve the same Master and I love Him more than words can express. He guides this church and you are His. Remember we were here together today and that you heard from my lips that I know Jesus Christ lives.
These are the notes from the first meeting and every meeting there after was amazing with apostolic blessings in each meeting. More to come but I need to send some of these wonderful messages out to you.