¨7 And they said: Behold, we cannot understand the words which our father hath spoken concerning the natural branches of the olive tree, and also concerning the Gentiles.
10 Behold, I said unto them: How is it that ye do not keep the commandments of the Lord? How is it that ye will perish, because of the hardness of your hearts?
11 Do ye not remember the things which the Lord hath said?—If ye hearts, and ask me in faith, believing that ye shall receive, with diligence in keeping my commandments, surely these things shall be made known unto you.¨
So, really in verse 11 it gives us a clear cut way to receive our answers from God, receive our guidance from Him. I like to apply it also with Alma 32
27 But behold, if ye will awake and arouse your faculties, even to an experiment upon my words, and exercise a particle of faith, yea, even if ye can no more than desire to believe, let this desire work in you, even until ye believe in a manner that ye can give place for aportion of my words.
When we talk about not hardening your heart, and asking in faith believing that we can receive, I like to start off just saying, Even if you can just WANT to believe it, WANT to receive an answer, you can start there, and then let that work in you. But we ALWAYS have to be obedient. It made me think of a talk I read in the Liahona.. that sometimes when we have doubts we stop going to church or stop doing the things we know we need to do, and they related it to leaving a storm shelter in the middle of a hurricane or a tornado or something like that. ¨Doubt your doubts before your doubt your faiths¨ It´s okay to have questions, that´s normal. But in this gospel and in this church we progress precept by precept and receive more light when we act on the light we´ve already received. If you do have questions and want answers, I encourage you to follow this recipe, given to us from God by way of his ancient and modern day prophets! This is super long.. sorry but it´s something that I remembered one day and used in a lesson this week so I wanted to share it!
Love, Elder Lohberg!
Mom: Hey - saw your post on the weekly questions - so see that you are on! How has your week been?
Aaron: Pretty good... well like the same.. but it was pretty funny.. lots of laughs.
Mom: um...ok - we want to know the "pretty funny" and "lots of laughs" insights :) please spill the beans so we can enjoy too! :p
Aaron: uh... well i went with the mission leader.. who´s hilarious as far as work goes haha.. and with my comp we planned a ton of lessons in our area.. the plan i had with the ward mission leader was go contacting in the sister´s old area to find news.. hahahaaha.. so we left his house and he started whining after like 5 minutes haha because he put on new black timberlands that he had NEVER used before and they we chafing his ankles hahaha.. he told me LETS TAKE THE BUS and i was like.. no it´s closer walking.. so we kept walking, he stopped at a store and bought 2 bandaids to put on his ankle and kept whining haha... and then i said, Let´s see who gets let into a house first, and he was like FINE i served in Nicaragua, that´s easy. So we said a prayer and he wanted to start contacting in a place that had a TON of money hahahaha.. he was like NEW STAKE PRESIDENTTT.. and he knocked on like 3 doors and was like, OKAY it sucks here lets go.. haha but we kept trying and then after about 30 minutes of pretty good contacts he was like, what else do you got? and I told him nothing.. just keep finding news and he like almost fell to the ground laughing and whining hahahaha and i thought of Kung fu Panda when he wants to see the fireworks and is locked out.. he was like I JUST WANT PEOPLE TO ACCEPT ME SO I CAN TAKE WEIGHT OFF MY ANKLE haha so he went like super crazy and everyone was like NO NO NO hahahaa... then he like asked for my agenda and I gave it to him, we had like 9 lessons planned on one line and he´s like WHO are all these people, and i´m like calm down don't worry, elder Escarcega is visiting them, and then i showed him and in the back up plan it says ¨With J¨ and I boxed in like 5 hours in red pen but it was blank hahahahahahaha. So he whined and cried laughing and then went to the Mormon apartments where a bunch of Mormons live and he rang EVERY SINGLE doorbell lol and no one left so he was like WHAT THE FREAK EVEN THE MEMBERS DON'T RECEIVE US. and he started whistling like crazy trying to get someone to come out and let us in to the complex lol. And 1 member came up from the most bottom house and came out to greet us and when he opened to door to shake the Mission leaders hand J the ML just walked right in haha and then turned and greeted him. So we went and sat down for like 45 minutes and taught them a little bit... Then we went out to contact again.. then like an hour later he was hungry bought a taxi to his house and we ate lol.. then we had to wait an hour because he didn't want to go out again and it was the other elders area and then they left me with another convert in Tico Block, my comp was close but i couldn´t go look for him so i waited another hour and then they found me and we went home lol. Crazy day. Also we found some crazy people who believe in dumb things
Mom: Tell me about your week. How have things gone this week for you? Any new leads for your teaching pool? Weren't you working with a bunch of youth? Are none of them progressing? How did you split up the area with the other elders? Next time you have a district meeting you should take a picture of your district.
I was thinking about putting together another box to send to you - what sort of things would you like in this next one? Do you want some more protein bars? I think they are on sale at costco right now (those zone bars) - did you even like those? What else would you like to have?
Did you ever look up the guy Megan Kint gave you info for? He lived in San Jose somewhere. I think she said she just gave you the address she last had for him - which if they don't really go by addresses it may not be that much help - but wouldn't it be cool if you could find him and he was someone you were to teach? You just never know!
Aaron: They´ve gone pretty well... we found some news that smoke tons of marijuana.. one of them went to church but like left mad i think haha.. but we´ll see he´s 45 lives alone and smokes weed everyday. We are.. one of them is 17 with 2 months until 18... he´s JUST like C.. but his mom didn't give permission.. we fasted with him and she said no.. so he´s waiting until Nov 4th his Bday to be 18. Then we have A.. he´s 14 but he acts a little bit more like his 12.. he wants to get baptized so this week we´re going to try and obtain the permission from his dad. Then also we have I, his friend brought him to church, he´s gone like 6 times and he loves it, he´s 12.. he said his mom said it´s okay if he gets baptized and she wants to go to the church.. the plan is to go today and see if we can have her sign. Then we have some other people but they like.. half progress. We have about 11 people progressing.. but some are slower than others. I don't know mom.. another box.. what a ton of money.....!!!!!! I wanted to go buy watches at a place in San Jose.. if you buy 6 they´re half off.. they´re pretty cool looking and all the elders say that they have hundreds of options.. so elders group up and buy like 2 each.. something like that. But we haven´t had 20 people REALLY welly progressing to be able to leave and go buy them. Also i bought scripture cases.. the cheap ones that aren´t leather.. Vinyl i think it is in English.. i wanted them to be Black and florescent green but afterwards he told me he only found emerald green i think and he bought it so i was like.. wow... okay.. haha but we´ll see how they turn out. The other guy that does leather is like HEY WHEN ARE UGUNNA BUY, IT¨S BEEN BECAUSE YOU´RE HERE IN THE WARD, GOTTA TAKE ADVANTAGE OF it hhaa.. they cost like 120 bucks no thanks. The protein bars did taste good.. i haven´t used the powder yet.. because i haven´t had an exercise plan that´s like.. consistent.. because we go on divisions or we have a meeting and get up early.. so its like.. idk.. I need to look into what she gave me again.. ill try and remember to look for it and see.. the directions are crap so i don´t think i´ll ever find him for anything.. but we´ll see.
Mom: That is a lot of youth you are working with - but hey maybe that is the best way to go - they can then work with their parents - soften them up to the gospel. Youth are more open to learn.
Well when you get enough investigators to go on your field trip - go get a new watch! Hopefully that happens before you get transferred :) If you want me to go pick you up a watch at Kohls and put that in the box I can do that too - just let me know.
So - I could get you some more zone bars if you liked them - the powder I did not for exercising as much as for protein - but if you haven't touched it - then I wont pick any more of that up. I made the mistake last time of mailing your box express priority - I will just mail it priority this next time - it will be cheaper.
HAHA - emerald green? lol! ya - that will be interesting :) How much is he charging your for vinyl? I would think the leather would be a better investment to be honest - but your choice. If you decide you want the leather ones - get them - it can be one of your bday gifts or Christmas gifts.
Aaron: Ma gave me a watch, it works.. but the other ones are like really cool looking.. they claim to be real brands but they´re not but still cheap and cool.. so i wanted to buy two.. no rush really because i have 1 right now. But i dont want you to send me more.. so much money lost=(
for the vinyl it was about 25 bucks but both the cases. in total.
vinyl is like a cheap looking leather right? my comp has them.. they´ve lasted him and he says they´re water resistant.. his bag got soaked and it didn't get in
Mom: awesome general email this week :) It's been interesting - I've heard a lot of people lately "doubting their faith" and really questioning why they are doing what they are doing. And I always respond with - well - are you really doing what you ought to be doing? Reading your scriptures (not just reading but studying, pondering) and are you praying? talking with Heavenly Father daily - seeking guidance and instruction? Are you keeping the commandments? When you are doing these things - the rest falls into place doesn't it?
I liked this from President Eyring & President Bednar - Eyring talks about the need we have for greater spiritual strength to help us stay the course - and Bednar talks about how to stay worthy of the companionship of the Holy Ghost - which we need too if we want to have revelation in our life:
of the First Presidency spoke about the increased need for continuous spiritual growth in the latter days: “As the forces around us increase in intensity, whatever spiritual strength was once sufficient will not be enough. And whatever growth in spiritual strength we once thought was possible, greater growth will be made available to us. Both the need for spiritual strength and the opportunity to acquire it will increase at rates which we underestimate at our peril”( Oct. 1999, 9).
pointed out that to fully enjoy the companionship of the Spirit, we must avoid activities that will drive the Spirit from us:
“If something we think, see, hear, or do distances us from the Holy Ghost, then we should stop thinking, seeing, hearing, or doing that thing. If that which is intended to entertain, for example, alienates us from the Holy Spirit, then certainly that type of entertainment is not for us. Because the Spirit cannot abide that which is vulgar, crude, or immodest, then clearly such things are not for us. Because we estrange the Spirit of the Lord when we engage in activities we know we should shun, then such things definitely are not for us.
“… As we become ever more immersed in the Spirit of the Lord, we should strive to recognize impressions when they come and the influences or events that cause us to withdraw ourselves from the Holy Ghost” ( May 2006).
In my study of Acts lately - the Apostle Paul is a great example of someone following the Spirit - and gaining revelation and then acting upon it.
Aaron: I told u i ate gizzard right? and chicken heart and everything
Mom: yes! yuck! I think you said it was hard to swallow!?! I think your wording was something like "the fight was real" haha
Mom: a Mr. Bean car?! that's awesome!! HAHAHA!! That is hilarious!! it took him 3 times to get the car up the hill?haha!! I love how he had to back it way up and then zoom up! haha! So did you walk up the hill or did you have to get out and he rolled back down and then tried to get up? how did that all happen? haha - I've watched this like 3 times now! I love hearing your voice!! So excited you sent this to me!!