President's Pen 10-3-16 (Conference Applied)

As missionaries in the Texas Houston South Mission, we know our purpose is to invite others to come unto Christ, by helping them receive the restored gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost and enduring to the end. We do this through our constant efforts to find, teach, invite, retain, and activate God’s children; we love it, we live it, and we do it! We begin with the “End in Mind”, and see God’s children as he does. We are Disciples of Jesus Christ and the best missionaries in the world!

Dear Elders & Sisters,

We love you! What a great weekend and how blessed we are to have General Conference as an opportunity to spiritually feast and come to know what the Lord would have us do.  It was so awesome to hear from President Ashton and we love the Doctrine of Christ! I pray that your prayers were answered.  I also pray that direction was received and that you’ll heed the promptings of the Spirit to do what the Lord would have you do.  Living prophets and apostles have strengthened our faith in the Savior and His Atonement, called us to repentance, helped us remember the importance of covenant keeping, taught us how to have the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost, and how to JOYFULLY endure to the end.  They taught the Doctrine of Christ and now it is our blessing to go and do the same.  You are apostles with a little “a”, you are an extension of their service, see that you serve with all your heart, might, mind and strength.

As I listened to conference, a scripture continued to come into my mind, “Wherefore, I the Lord ask you this question—unto what were ye ordained?  To preach my gospel by the Spirit, even the Comforter which was sent forth to teach the truth.” (D&C 50:13-14) We have all been blessed to have this as the commission of our sacred calling and to recognize that the Spirit is the teacher (And the Spirit shall be given unto you by the prayer of faith; and if ye receive not the Spirit ye shall not teach. D&C 42:14).

What struck me about these verses as I listened to conference is that every one of the conference speakers was to preach the gospel by the Spirit.  If they were to attempt to preach in some other way, it would not be from God. (D&C 50:18) For this reason, it becomes clear that “he that preacheth and he that receiveth, understand one another, and both are edified and rejoice together.” (D&C 50:22) I believe this is why we all love conference as we are edified by the Spirit and then rejoice in the knowledge of gospel truths.  It is also why it feels like talks are specifically directed towards us as the Spirit teaches us what we need to know. 

Conference also blessed us with the light we need to keep walking the path that leads us back to our heavenly home. “That which is of God is light; and he that receiveth light, and continueth in God, receiveth more light; and that light groweth brighter and brighter until the perfect day. (D&C 50:24) That perfect day will be when we stand at “pleasing bar of the great Jehovah” (Moroni 10:34) as we are welcomed in with open arms because of our faith, repentance, and covenant keeping. 

What does this mean for us?  Like those that spoke at conference, we are to preach the gospel by the Spirit.  We can only receive the Spirit by the prayer of faith, which comes by our worthiness and obedience.  If the Spirit prompted you during conference to be more obedient or to resolve issues that might be holding you back, will you please visit with me? As missionaries, the only way we can teach with power and authority is to have the Spirit with us.  I invite you to address anything that might keep the Spirit from testifying truth to those we teach.  As you consider your worthiness and obedience, also review the relationship with your companion (be one; and if ye are not one ye are not mine D&C 38:27), your faith in the Savior’s work (What profit is it, my brethren, for a man to say he hath faith, and hath not works? James 2:14), your attitude or desire, and your humility and willingness to submit to God’s will.  Do all you can to feel like the Nephites, “And they did pray for that which they most desired; and they desired that the Holy Ghost should be given unto them.” (3 Ne 19:9)

If we are to edify those we teach so that we can rejoice together we must continue to feast upon the tools and resources we have been given.  The Book of Mormon, Preach My Gospel, District Videos, and other resources in the missionary library to help us come to a knowledge of the truth and treasure up all good things.  Your lesson plans, work with members, and development of missionary skills will continue to bless and help edify those you teach.  We all know that wonderful feeling that comes when someone embraces the message we teach, let’s make sure we’re always prepared to be the instruments the Lord needs us to be.  “And thus they were instruments in the hands of God in bringing many to the knowledge of the truth, yea, to the knowledge of their Redeemer.” (Mosiah 27:36)

As you do these things, you then become bearers of light, capable of sharing and giving light so that others can receive it and also be prepared for the perfect day.  “Therefore let your light so shine before this people, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” (3 Ne 12:16)

As taught at conference, “Yes! You are going to be good enough” and “Yes, you are going to make it as long as you keep repenting and do not rationalize or rebel.” The God of heaven is not a heartless referee looking for any excuse to throw us out of the game. He is our perfectly loving Father, who yearns more than anything else to have all of His children come back home and live with Him as families forever. He truly gave His Only Begotten Son that we might not perish but have everlasting life! Please believe, and please take hope and comfort from, this eternal truth. Our Heavenly Father intends for us to make it! That is His work and His glory. … (Elder J. Devn Cornish)

Elders & Sisters, we are doing a great work and you are on the path to live with God again.  Our blessing is to help others do the same.  Take what you’ve learned from conference and apply it.  Find constantly, teach repentance, and baptize converts! The Lord’s work rolls forward and it can’t be stopped.  Love ya!

Mission Update

Thanks for adjusting to the new transfer week.  I hope you all feel like it allowed you to focus on the work!  I loved seeing you lined up to greet the new missionaries.  I have attached the video for those that weren’t there with us.  I have also attached the calendar for October and November.  We have set worthy baptism goals for October and November.  You and your companion are needed and a part of the cause, will your efforts reflect your desire to help others come unto Christ?  Looking forward to a great month ahead!

President Hall