Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Week 76- Make the Exercise of Faith Your First Priority

DECEMBER 28, 2014

Temple Square on Christmas!!

It's finally snowing!!!!

Helloooooo Family & Friends!

I hope your Christmas was as wonderful as mine! It was good to see the families face's thru Skype! After 25 days into December we finally received a decent snowfall! It has snowed every day for the past 4 days and just keeps coming! I love Utah…The people are amazing, it actually has all 4 seasons, and the Lord has blessed this place to be the Headquarters of his Church.  I can testify confidently that people are being brought here from ALL around the world, for the purpose of investigating and joining His true Gospel.

Skyping with my family on Christmas Day!

As I mentioned in my last letter, we are teaching people from all around the world! It is such a blessing to be able to become acquainted with these wonderful people on their pursuit for happiness & purpose. The Lord works in mysterious ways, one of those being how he prepares individuals and send them to Zion to hear His word.

I wish to write today boldly and in plainness, that "no man can err". Elder Oaks gave a beautiful talk in April of 2011 titled, "Desire" in which he speaks of the importance of desire. Please read this talk if you have a moment now or in the near future.

VIDEO: "Desire" April Conference 2011

He states:"Desires dictate our priorities, priorities shape our choices, and choices determine our actions. The desires we act on determine our changing, our achieving, and our becoming."

As my past Tahitian companion would say, it all starts with a desire. With no desire, we can get nowhere. Our desire to learn of and obey God ultimately determines our Salvation. If we have no desire to obey God, we mustn't be surprised when we do not receive the blessings we want in this life or in the eternities.  As Lehi states, we must "act for [ourselves]" (2 Nephi 2:26). We can only expect to receive the blessings of the level of laws that we are willing to follow. We were put here on this earth "to see if they will do all things whatsoever the Lord their God shall command them;". We are here to see if we will live the Higher Law (3 Nephi 12) as taught by Jesus Christ.

Elder Scott of the 12 teaches that, "Feasting on the word of God each day is more important than sleep, school, work, television shows, video games, or social media. You may need to reorganize your priorities to provide time for the study of the word of God. If so, do it!" If you haven't read his most recent Conference talk on this matter, I invite you to do so.

VIDEO:  "Make The Exercise of Faith Your First Priority"
October 2014 Conference

He concludes that prayers, scripture study, family home evenings Temple and church attendance are of most vital and essential importance. Are these our priorities? We aren't just asked to do these things for the sake of just doing them or for obedience. We are asked to do them so that we can build upon a sure foundation of the Rock, so that we can withstand the tornadoes that life has to throw at us. Only through these simple things can we expect to become "converted unto the Lord" and stand strong through the trials of mortality.

Wrapping this all back up to the point of desire… We must (if we do not already) have a deep desire to follow the Lord in all things. It all starts with a "particle of faith" (Alma 32). I invite you to look deep within yourself and honestly evaluate yourself on the meter of desire. If you don't feel as if you have a strong desire to do these simple things, I invite you to repent and turn to the Lord in prayer to ask for that desire and then get up off your knees and go to work. Do what you know needs to be done.  I promise the Lord will bless you for it.  If you feel like these things are too hard, overwhelming, time consuming or that there isn't enough time in the day, I invite you to repent and slow your life down to a point where you can put the Lord first in your life.
If you do have a strong desire to follow Him, I invite you to continue do what you know if right. Don't slip up one bit. The adversary will be joyous to jump in at any chance he can get. Stay strong in your words, thoughts and actions, and He will take care of you. 

The Lord will bless you as we do our personal best in following Him. He, through the Atonement, will make up the rest for us. He is a Just God, but also infinitely merciful. I know Jesus is the Christ and that He is doing all He can to help us, as we help ourselves.

I love you all, keep up the good work. Stay close to Him and I promise he will bless you.

Elder Carroll

"Feast upon the words of Christ; for behold, the words of Christ will tell you all things what ye should do." (2 Nephi 32:3)

"It is not just that the Book of Mormon teaches us truth, though it indeed does that. It is not just that the Book of Mormon bears testimony of Christ, though it indeed does that, too. But there is something more. There is a power in the book which will begin to flow into your lives the moment you begin a serious study of the book. You will find greater power to resist temptation. You will find the power to avoid deception. You will find the power to stay on the straight and narrow path. The scriptures are called "the words of life" (D&C 84:85), and nowhere is that more true than it is of the Book of Mormon. When you begin to hunger and thirst after those words, you will find life in greater and greater abundance." 
-Ezra Taft Benson

" I believe in Christ--my Lord, my God!
My feet he plants on gospel sod.
I'll worship him with all my might;
He is the source of truth and light.
I believe in Christ; he ransoms me.
From Satan's grasp he sets me free,
And I shall live with joy and love
In his eternal courts above."
(I Believe in Christ, Hymn 134 v. 3)

pic1- (12/25/14) Temple Square on Christmas!
pic2- (12/25/14) Snowwwwww

No comments:

Post a Comment