Monday, March 23, 2015

Transfer News!

No news, I'm staying here. But I guess it's news that Elder Garcia is getting transferred. So I'll get a new companion tomorrow!
Another transfer has come and gone! They keep doing that...
This week was good. Nothing spectacularly out of the ordinary, but a couple of good days. We still have our truck (we haven't taken it back into the shop yet), but our mileage allotment is pretty low for our area, so we spent three days riding the bus to get around. On one of those days we met a nice young woman at the bus stop named Destiny. She told us she had recently moved from Tennessee (there's a lot of those...) and that she was looking for a church. We told her we couldn't help her.
Just kidding. We took her number down and set up an appointment to teach her the next day. We taught her the first lesson about the Restoration of the Gospel and then invited her to read the Book of Mormon to find out for herself. I asked her how long she thought it would take her to read a 531 page book. She said a little over six hours... Alright! She promised to read it. After that lesson a man pulled up in a minivan in the parking lot and stopped us. He said he had a question. I don't think he really had a question. He talked to us for a long time about his Baptist belief that we can know we've been saved unconditionally, and no matter how many ways we said it, or how many times we corrected him, he still left with the erroneous belief that Mormons think they can earn their way to heaven. It was pretty much a "We don't believe that." "Yes you do!" Conversation. He claimed to be trying to understand "Mormon theology," but I think more than anything he was studying up on it with the intent to disprove it. But'cha can't! 'Cuz it's true.
On Wednesday afternoon I went on exchanges with Elder Adling in Vail. It was pretty cool. They have a lot of Spanish-speaking members in their ward, even though it's a Spainglish ward like ours. I went to their ward coordination meeting and told them that my Spanish was "muy, muy mal." They told me not to worry about it. Then they had me offer the closing prayer, and they complimented me on my Spanish! They said I sounded like I was from Chihuahua. I guess that makes sense, since most of the people we taught in Montrose were from there. Probably about half of the Mexicans in Colorado are.
Friday was the first day of Spring! Winter is officially gone, and the weather here reflects it. It's been in the 50s and 60s all week (except one random snow storm), and most of the snow is melting away. Of course there are still 6-foot piles of snow all over the place in the shadows of buildings and the sides of the street where the snow plows came through, but you can actually see the ground and the plants and things, which were buried in snow before.
Elder Garcia and I were asked to speak in Sacrament Meeting on Sunday! The topics were a little strange, though. We were asked to speak on the 8 p.m. lessons we often have with members, and our 5 p.m. dinner appointments... I got stuck with the dinner talk. But it's okay! As I was writing down an outline for the talk, I had a list of a few scriptures I thought might apply. Things really started flowing and I couldn't write fast enough for fear I couldn't keep up with the revelation! It ended up being a talk about the joy of sharing the gospel and our responsibility towards our brothers and sisters who don't know the great news of the Restoration. Then I somehow tied it back into dinner. I want to share just a little from memory of one part of my talk:

In a revelation to the Prophet Joseph Smith, the Lord said, "Behold, I sent you out to testify and warn the people, and it becometh every man who hath been warned to warn his neighbor" (D&C 88:81).

Centuries earlier, speaking about this dispensation, the Book of Mormon prophet Jacob taught: "And the day that he shall set his hand again the second time to recover his people, is the day, yea, even the last time, that the servants of the Lord shall go forth in his power, to nourish and prune his vineyard; and after that the end soon cometh.  And how blessed are they who have labored diligently in his vineyard" (Jacob 6:2-3; emphasis added).
The Lord's declaration that "it becometh every man who hath been warned to warn his neighbor" definitively eliminates any justification for the belief that the laborers in the vineyard are the full-time missionaries alone.
Sweet! A door labeled "Elect!"
Every member has a responsibility in this, the work of salvation among the living. And who else can do it? No one. If we think we can be children of the covenant with a knowledge of the fullness of the gospel, and stand idly by while the work or our Master hastens on around us, we're mistaken.
"We all have work; let no one shirk.
Put your shoulder to the wheel."
(Hymns, 252; emphasis added)
So I might have embellished a little bit, but that was the gist of my talk. The work is true! It's a joy! Remember that the Savior lives, and that He leads His Church on the earth today. Thomas S. Monson is His prophet. I'm so excited for General Conference!
Elder Rogers

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