Saturday, February 26, 2011

"Things we know, and things we DO NOT"

Have any of you lost a loved one? Was it through natural causes or did they take their own life?   
I have often thought about what happens to those who take their own life. We know that the law of Moses, or the 10 commandments, that is says "Thou shalt not kill." OK, well does this mean also taking one's own life? 
I pondered on this question for awhile. A very good friend of mine took his life about 5 days before I left for my mission.  
My friend called me on the phone and told me this terrible news. I hung up the phone and just sat outside on my porch.
I was shocked when I heard this news, I thought no not him! Why him?!
I don't know why, but I have been thinking alot about him lately. Especially when I study about the Plan of Salvation.
I wonder, if there is hope for him and if he could be forgiven. Would God, and could forgive an act such as this one.
I came across a talk on by Elder M. Russell Ballard, "Things we know, and things we do not." There is a part of this talk that brought much comfort to my soul, as I hope it does with yours as well. "I believe the Lord will consider each case separately and judge the circumstances of each individual. I have sincerely sought direction from our Father in Heaven to help me understand the nature of suicide. And I have come to know, as well as anything else that I know from God, that these people have a place in the kingdom of our Father, and it is not one of darkness or despair, but one where they can receive comfort and experience serenity." " is clear that hope exists."
In Doctrine and Covenants 138:58-59 it says,"The dead who repent will be redeemed, through obedience to the ordinances of the house of God, And after they have paid the penalty of their transgressions, and are washed clean, shall receive a reward according to their works, for they are heirs of salvation."
I know there is hope for all those who have passed on. I know that I will see him again. "... Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid." (John 14:27)

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Hymns, Have a GREAT message.

Today at church we sang a hymn just before we passed the sacrament. Its titled "Behold the Great Redeemer Die." I have heard this hymn many times in my life, but for some reason today it really stood out to me.
I wanna write down some of the hymns.....

"Behold the great Redeemer die, A broken law to satisfy.
He dies a sacrifice for sin, He dies a sacrifice for sin,
That man may live and glory win.

While guilty men his pains deride, They pierce his hands and feet and side.
And with insulting scoffs and scorns, And with insulting scoffs and scorns,
They crown his head with plaited thorns.

Although in agony he hung, No murm'ring word escaped his tongue.
His high commission to fulfill, His high commission to fulfill,
He magnified his Father's will.

'Father, from me remove this cup. Yet, if thou wilt, I'll drink it up.
I've done the work thou gavest me, I've done the work thou gavest me,
Receive my spirit unto thee.'

HE LIVES-he lives. We humbly now Around these sacred symbols bow
And seek, as Saints of latter days, And seek, as Saints of latter days.
To do his will and live his praise."

This is my new favorite hymn. I love my Savior with all my heart. I'm grateful to be sharing His gospel.
Remember who you are and what you stand for!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

"I can be a Missionary"

I found this story on and LOVED it!! I wanted to share it..

"Ryan enjoyed going to school. He especially liked his teacher, Miss Johnson.
One day Miss Johnson asked the children to draw a picture of what they wanted to be when they grew up. Ryan had no trouble deciding what he would draw. He drew a picture of a man in a suit carrying his scriptures and walking down a street. Ryan wanted more than anything else to become a missionary when he grew up, just like his older brother.

When Ryan’s teacher looked at his picture, she could not understand what he had drawn. Miss Johnson was not a member of the Church, so she didn’t know what the man in Ryan’s picture was doing. She asked Ryan to explain his drawing to her. Ryan told his teacher that he wanted to become a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints when he grew up. Miss Johnson was surprised that a boy’s greatest desire was to be a missionary, instead of a policeman, a doctor, or some other occupation.
After school, Miss Johnson asked Ryan to tell her more about why he wanted to be a missionary. Ryan told her how much he loved the Church and how his brother was in another country teaching others about the Church. He told her that he knew the Church was true because its teachings are the teachings of Jesus Christ.

That evening Ryan told his parents about Miss Johnson and the picture he had drawn. He asked his parents if he could invite Miss Johnson over for dinner so the family could meet her and talk to her about the gospel.
The next day, Ryan took a note to Miss Johnson inviting her to his home for dinner. She accepted his invitation and went to Ryan’s home a few days later. Miss Johnson enjoyed Ryan and his family so much that she visited them often. They had many discussions about the Church, and six months later Miss Johnson was baptized. She was always grateful to Ryan for sharing his love for the Church with her."

Testimonies of little kids are so amazing and strong. We had a lesson with investigator at a members house and their little girl, 9 years old bore her testimony on how she knew the church was true. The spirit was strong but as soon as that little girl bore her testimony, the spirit was so much more powerful I started getting teary eyed.
It reminded me of a couple scriptures...
In Matt 18:3 it says,"And said, Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted, and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven." Mosiah 3:19 it says,"....becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father."
Remember who you are and what you stand for!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Remember.. The Light of Christ is in EVERYONE!!

What an amazing weekend, I thought I would share it with all of you.
We had a baptism on Saturday!!!!  
We started teaching this young man a little before Christmas. But, the Christmas break came up and we didn't see him for a long time. We got a hold of him and began teaching the gospel to him. 
Time and time went on and we started noticing a change in him.
The light of Christ, that is within ALL of us, started shining brighter and brighter. In Doctrine and Covenants 50:24 it says,"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...."
This scripture means alot to me now, because I've seen that light grow brighter and brighter within this young man!
He showed up the morning of his baptism and was just smiling the whole time. After he was baptized that smile just got bigger.
On Sunday, he was confirmed a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, and he received the gift of the Holy Ghost.
That light just got brighter! I'm so happy for this young man that chose to,"Follow thou me[the Savior]." 
I'm grateful I was able to see this change happen within this young man. I know the Spirit has touched him and his family. I love him and his family very much, and I know that the Lord loves them. I know the Lord is mindful of all of us and our prayers.
We love you Tyler!!! And Brother and Sister Bowen!
Remember who you are and what you stand for!!

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Remember, Sacrifice isn't easy.. But its worth it!!

Today in church one of the lessons was about sacrifice. I like this video, of the sacrifice this young man made. He loved surfing more than anything, and he put that aside for something he new that would help him later on in life.. Seminary... Because of this decision he made to put the Lord first something better came along.
Sacrifice is a hard thing to do. Think of Abraham, he was told to sacrifice his son. Abraham was willing to do anything the Lord asked of him.  
The law of sacrifice was practiced since the time of Adam and Eve to the time of Jesus Christ.
A hand goes up (in class) and a question was asked, "how does this apply to our day? I don't find that its hard for me to make a sacrifice to the gospel." I thought this was a really good question and thought to myself of the sacrifices I have made for the gospel.
One thing that came to mind, was the recent converts that I have met and seen. They make many sacrifices, to do what they know is right. Some sacrifices are harder to make than others.
Missionaries sacrifice 18-24 months of their lives to serve the Lord. That can be hard there is school, jobs and family that we are leaving behind.
Yes, serving a mission is a sacrifice but its worth it. I know better things will come in time.
Its not just the missionaries that make a big sacrifice, there are many other sacrifices that people make to follow what the Lord asks of them. "One family sold their car to get the money they wanted to contribute to a temple building fund. Another family sold their home to get money to go to the temple. One brother sacrificed his job because he refused to work on Sundays."
Why do you think our willingness to sacrifice is related to our readiness to live in the presence of God? What sacrifices are you willing to make to do what the Lord asks.
Remember who you are and what you stand for!

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Hungry?... for spiritual guidance?

I know its only Wednesday, but this week has been a great week so far!
This Sunday was the first Sunday of the month, so fast Sunday. A day which we fast for 2 meals and give money for those two meals to the church which goes towards feeding the poor. 
I never fasted before I came on a mission. I always wondered what the purpose was. I didn't think that it was that big of a deal. 
Well the past months I have come to understand the importance of fasting and what is the purpose of fasting.
Like alot of us do, I have questions and concerns that I want answered. Fasting is a way for me to show Heavenly Father that I really need to know the answer to my question or need my concerns resolved so I can do my work that I am here to do.  
Before fasting, start with a prayer and during the day think about that question and/or concern that you may have. 
I have found that my questions have been answered and my concerns have been addressed. Not only that, but I feel so good that day. I feel so in tune with the spirit and able to recognize promptings that come to my mind.
This Sunday I fasted for a particular thing, something for me, my companion and our area here in Napa. 
Yesterday, I felt like Heavenly Father heard and answered my prayer. It was like and ah-ha moment for me, that He does love me and is helping me in my area and as a missionary.  
The great thing about fasting is that you don't have to wait til fast Sunday to fast. You can fast anytime about anything.
I know that it is important to fast, and we can be more in tune with the spirit and the promptings he gives us. 
If you have a question or concern about anything or anyone, I want to invite you to fast and pray to the Father about it. I know that it will be answered.
Remember who you are and what you stand for!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

A new calling... Online Missionary

I'm Sister Gorder serving in the Santa Rosa California Mission. I LOVE serving here in California. Its been a great experience for me so far to be serving the Lord.
Sometime in October 2010, I was serving in Vacaville, CA. I received a call from the assistant missionaries telling me that I needed to attend the leadership meeting that was coming up. I was very nervous, not knowing what to expect.
I arrived at this meeting, which was a few days later after I received the phone call. There we were told of a new thing that was happening. Not all missions are doing this, but our mission was one of the few that were chosen for this new thing.
Yup, some missionaries were chosen to be an online missionary. We were told that we would get a facebook, a blog, and spend a 1-2 hours a day online to teach the gospel and share experiences that we have had. Yes, I was one of those missionaries that were chosen.
To be honest I didn't know what to think or what to expect from this calling. Having had this calling for a few months now, has really changed my view on alot of things. Its exciting to see that we are not only walking the streets, knocking on doors, and riding bikes; but we are also sharing the gospel through, facebook. I love being a missionary and sharing the gospel. Sometimes when I try to explain my experiences they never turn out the way I want it to when I'm saying it out loud. It works for me being able to type it out and read it.:)
I'm grateful for this calling, and to be able to teach people online. Its been a great experience for me.
Its exciting for me to see that the work of the Lord really is going forward, and I'm happy that I have been able to be a part of it. I couldn't ask for anything else right now, I'm very happy to be here serving the Lord!

Friday, February 4, 2011

To Be Cont.. Abinadi

To continue from my last post....
I can see that just from watching the video, one of the priest Alma has this look on his face. You can just see that his heart has been touched by the things that Abinadi said by the power of the Holy Ghost.
In the video Abinadi teaches them to repent of their sins, and remember that it is only through Christ we can be saved. Alma's reply to this is," I will remember."
This morning I wanted to read Abinadi's story in the Book of Mormon, and how Alma's life was changed because of the things which Abinadi had spoken. In chapter 17 of Mosiah verses 2-4 it says that Alma "believed the words which Abinadi had spoken."  
He pleaded to the King to let him go. The king got angry with Alma and wanted to kill him. He "fled from before them [the king] and hid himself that they found him not. Being hid for many days he did write all the words which Abinadi had spoken."  
Alma repented of his sins and went to the people and preached to them the words of Abinadi. I love that in the first video I posted Abinadi said they couldnt touch him until he has said what the Lord wanted him to say. Because of that Alma had a change of heart.
CES Fireside for Young AdultsThe song in this video really touches my heart. "The words of a prophet enlighten my mind, their words of love and peace, and they come from our God on High. Listen! Listen! To a prophet of our Lord."
The last part of this video, where Alma is speaking is found in Mosiah 18:7-11.
I'm so grateful for Abinadi for doing the will of the Lord, and because he did Alma was able to go and teach his words. He continued the work of the Lord.
I love these Book of Mormon prophets and our living prophet today. I know that President Thomas S. Monson is a man called of God and does speak His words. I know that the words of a prophet "enlightens our minds, their words are of love and peace and they DO come from our GOD on high." Listen to the prophet of the Lord.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Abinadi and King Noah Chapter 5

On Monday we had a mission conference. Yes, I kinda already talked about some things that I learned. But as I was going through my notes this morning I read something that really stood out to me at the conference and again this morning.
Elder Kearon of the seventy, asked us about our favorite prophet. In the Bible or Book of Mormon. It was silent only for a few moments and then you start to see these missionaries hands go up and they start naming out all of their favorites. One prophet that was called out was Nephi in the Book of Mormon. Nephi is a very strong and faithful servant of the Lord willing to do anything the Lord asked of him. He then read in 2 Nephi 4:18 which says,"I am encompassed about because of the temptations and the sins which do so easily beset me. And when I desire to rejoice, my heart groaneth because of my sins; nevertheless, I know in whom I have trusted."
Elder Bowen then said, "Nephi felt like we do. Nephi could feel this way and yet he could still be Nephi."
Bad things happen to all of us but we have to chose to take it and learn from it or be upset, like Nephi.
I thought about my favorite prophet Abinadi. He did what the Lord asked him to do, and he was thrown into prison. I cant imagine what was going through in his mind and how he felt but he did what he knew was right. I love his testimony and feel the Spirit every time I play it..
to be continued....
Remember who you are and what you stand for!