President's Post 11-6-17 (Purpose, Prayer, Progression, Goals & Plans)

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 that teach repentance and baptize converts and the best missionaries in the world!

Dear Elders & Sisters,

I love ya!  I’m am so grateful to be equally yoked with you as disciples who are striving to invite and help all come unto Christ.  Thanks for your goodness and for your daily efforts to serve with all your heart, might, mind, and strength.

Each week I send you an email, and at the top of it, I state our purpose.  I mention our efforts, love for the Lord’s work, and the importance of beginning with the end in mind.  I also remind you that you are a disciple of Christ, one who has been called to teach repentance and baptize converts. I love the simplicity of our calling, we know what we’re here for, what we are to do, and how we are to do it.  When we “get it”, distractions become few, obedience and personal worthiness become our quest, and the urgency to find, teach, invite, and help God’s children becomes our singular focus.  We indeed leave our lives behind, and lay them down for a cause that is far greater than anything else we could pursue.  The simplicity of mission life, because of we have an eye single to the glory of God, is something you will long for when you return home; I promise you this is true. 

As part of our singular focus, think about your day and how you wisely spend your time and fulfill your purpose…  You begin your day in mighty prayer, asking for the Lord to open the windows of heaven to guide, direct, bless, and help your efforts.  You think about your progress, and the progress of your investigators, and then set goals and make plans to achieve the outcomes you desire.  You go to work, having treasured up the words of eternal life, seeking out souls who the Lord has prepared to learn from His authorized representatives.  You teach by the Spirit, invite in the Savior’s name, help and follow up.  You end your day the way it began, with another mighty prayer, thanking the Lord for His tender mercies, accounting for your day, and committing to do better where needed.  The pattern continues day after day, a simple life, not without its challenges, but rewarding, purposeful, and life changing. 

A pattern that we hope you will keep as you return from mission life and back into school, dating, marriage, work, family, and lifelong service in the Church, comes from the simple things you do every day as a missionary.  You have a vision for what you want to accomplish (purpose), you pray, you review your progress, you set goals, you make plans, you go to work, and you pray and account to the Lord.   These are simple things and patterns that bring enormous direction, rewards, and satisfaction to your life. 

In the coming weeks, I will share with you some changes that will enhance the way you think about these simple daily patterns and activities that are part of your missionary service.  To prepare your hearts and minds for what is to come, I want you to ponder the following points:

  • Purpose – Do I know and understand the purpose for my life, and as a missionary, and does it drive my desires and efforts? Do I recognize and understand that the doctrine of Christ is the only way back to the Father and the Son and that I am part of their work and their glory?  Do I know the reason why I am called to teach repentance and baptize converts?  Do I desire to talk to everyone and focus on finding people everywhere I go? Do I truly want to baptize converts and do I make every effort to do so?  What do I want to do to have my purpose more fully written on my heart?
  • Prayer – Do I have mighty prayers both morning and night?  Do I pray from my heart, not just my lips?  Do I seek for personal revelation to guide me and my efforts as a missionary?  Do I pray to find those the Lord has prepared?  Do I pray specifically and individually for my investigators?  Do I pray in gratitude?  Do I know how the Lord answers my prayers?  Do I account to the Lord in my prayers?  What do I want to do to improve my mighty prayers?
  • Progression – Do I take time to review my progress?  Do I think about the progress of my investigators and what I can do to help them increase their faith in the Savior and His gospel? Am I satisfied with progress that doesn’t come quickly, but line upon line and precept upon precept?  Am I committed to my own progression and the progression of others?  What do I want to do to review my progress and the progress for those I’ve been called to serve?
  • Goals – Do I understand what it means to set inspired goals?  Do I value the principles of goal setting, both for myself and my investigators?  Do I recognize that goal setting in missionary work is about people?  Do I value what goals can mean to my progress and the progress of others? Do I recognize that goals have to come from the desires of my heart and that I need to take ownership for setting and accomplishing them?  Am I disciplined enough to stick to my goals in the face of change and adversity? Do I share my goals with others and hold myself accountable to my efforts?  What do I want to improve on how I set inspired goals and achieve them?
  • Plans – Do I recognize the importance of simple, specific plans and how they help me achieve my goals (for myself and others)? Do I know how to make plans within specified timeframes, using all the resources the Lord has made available to me?  Do I recognize that plans can be adapted and changed based on current needs and circumstances?  Do I value the spiritual process of planning and how it can direct and guide my efforts, even when I don’t know exactly what to do?  Am I disciplined enough to stick to my plans and make new ones as needed?  Do I share my plans with others and hold myself accountable to my efforts?  What do I want to improve on how I make plans and accomplish them?

Elders & Sisters, the Lord trusts and loves you.  I continue to see His hand in the work, and especially for this generation of missionaries.  Continuous revelation is real and the prophets and apostles of our day continue to provide us guidance and direction that is inspired.  There are some exciting changes coming that will simplify and bless you in your missionary efforts and in your post mission discipleship.  The changes will, however, require you to know the patterns of purpose, prayer, progression, goals, and plans.  Review in your mind the questions I’ve asked you to ponder above.  I invite you to take a moment in your personal studies and answer them as truthfully and honestly as you can.  If you find that you are lacking in some areas, rather than getting down on yourself, consider what you can do to improve where necessary.  How blessed we are to be the Lord’s missionaries.  We know our purpose, we demonstrate our love to the Lord through our constant efforts, we begin with the end in mind, we are disciples of Christ, and we know our charge is to teach repentance and baptize converts.  I love the Lord and His work! Love ya!

President Hall