I'm incredibly excited to start this blog! I have been wanting to start this blog as a way to share my testimony and life experiences with the other sisters (and brothers?) living on this gorgeous, God-given earth. I want to share what it is like, step-by-step, to fill out your papers. I want to share how to prepare for your mission. I want to share about temptation. I want to share about redemption. I want to share about the Atonement. I want to share about my Savior, and your Savior. I want to share about my family and my life as I go about discovering who I am and what God's plan is for me in this life. I want to share what is is like to go through this process of getting ready to serve a mission, because when I was researching missions, there was not a lot of information about what it was like to fill out papers. I had a lot of questions about what I needed to be doing right now, I was having trouble finding the answers to my questions. I'm hoping to keep this blog up throughout my mission and hopefully into my mission of life.
I am really terrible at keeping up with a journal, so I'm hoping this blog will make me a little more accountable about writing things down because I want to be able to share specifics in my posts and I want to be able to have my life experiences written down to share with my future family someday. This blog is something that the Lord has been prompting me to do for quite some time now and I think that it is important that I listen to that prompting. Apparently, I have something to share and who am I to deny others of my knowledge. I am in no way perfect, I am not all-knowing, nor will I ever be but I do have a special, exciting and crucial message to share with the world and I know for a fact that it is time for me to share it. The Lord asks us to share what we know and as it says in Doctorine and Covenants 84:62; "Therefore, go ye into all the world, and unto whatsoever place ye cannot go ye shall send, that the testimony may go from you into all the world unto every creature." It's my sincere hope that this blog someday touches somebody's life and that they can find the unlimited joy and peace that comes from being a faithful member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
So, on that note, I'd like to share my testimony as it is now, because I'll be sharing it as I go about this process and I'm interested in seeing how it will change as I go through my life.
I know that I belong to the TRUE church of Jesus Christ and I am eternally grateful to my Heavenly Father for allowing me to be born into a family that already had a knowledge of this perfect gospel. I do understand how truly fortunate I am for having been given such an amazing blessing from Heavenly Father right from the beginning. I know that my family is eternal and that someday I'll be able to be sealed to my own spouse so that I can have my own family with me forever.
I know that I have the God-given right to agency. In the premortal life, I chose to come to this earth to get a body and to be tested. I knew then that this life would be full of choices and that some of those choices might make it impossible for me to return to my Father in heaven but I made the choice to come here anyway because I know that I am strong enough to live in this world, face adversity and temptation and STILL make it back to my Heavenly Father. I also knew that by making that choice that I would get to have my Heavenly Father with me every step of the way if I chose to accept Him into my life. I know that this mortal life is short, and that we were sent here to be refined and polished through trials and hardships so that we can someday inherit all that our Heavenly Father has.
I know that Christ is the Savior of this world. I know that without Him, I will not be able to return to my Heavenly Father or have eternal life. I know that because of His sacrifice, His Atonement, I am able to repent and live life without the spiritual shackles that come with sin. I am free because He broke the bonds of death and sin.
I know that Joseph Smith truly translated the Book of Mormon with God's help and that he was the Lords' hand in building this wonderful, true church. I know that Joseph Smith is a true prophet of God and I know that we have a current, LIVING, prophet on this earth today. I sometimes take for granted how marvelous it truly is to have this blessing. I get to hear from my Heavenly Father, straight from the mouth of one of His most trusted servants, like the people of old got to hear from their prophets. I am so grateful to live in the time that I live. I also know that the current prophet, President Thomas S. Monson, and the general authorities that are called to lead this church are truly called of God. I sustain them and trust in their inspired wisdom.
I know that the Book of Mormon is true. It has been a life-changing book for me to read and study. I am a book lover. I read all the time, but I have never come across a book that applies to my own life as well as the Book of Mormon. I gain so much knowledge and guidance from that book and I know that it is true because I have prayed about its truthfulness and my spirit swelled with peace and pure happiness, which I interpret as a solid "YES!" from my Heavenly Father. I testify that anyone can know that the Book of Mormon is a true book, if they take the time to read it and pray about it.
I would also like to testify that I know how powerful prayer can be. Prayer is how I communicate with God. He listens to me. He knows me. And He loves to hear me talk to Him about my problems and my triumphs. Heavenly Father is so loving and forgiving that it is hard for me to even write about prayer without tearing up. Prayer is something that does not come easy to me, but I know that when I do open my heart and my soul to Him, He hears me and He rejoices that I am finally letting Him into my life. Prayer is a tool I use to help me concentrate, to calm my fears, to voice questions and concerns, prayer is like calling my Father on the phone and telling Him about my day and the experiences that I went through. Prayer is how I ask for my Fathers forgiveness when I forget who I am and what I should be doing. Prayer is how I repent. Prayer is also how I express how immeasurably grateful I am to my Heavenly Father for giving me the life, body and family that I have.
I am proud to say that I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I am proud that I get to be an advocate for this church everyday of my life. I am humbled that the Lord chooses me to be His hands, feet and mouthpiece because there are so many days that I do not feel worthy of His trust but I serve Him anyway because I know it is right.
There are so many things that I know to be true and so many things that I need to share but I want to get more into depth with these subjects in later posts.
I love this gospel. I love my Savior. I am so excited so shed some light on the subject of the LDS faith and on what it is like to prepare to serve a mission.
As my dad always says, "Remember who you are and where you came from" or "be true to who you are and the name you bear", Whether that name is your family name or Christs' name (or both!), you are an example and an inspiration to those around you so, do yourself proud.
Have a fantastic Sunday everyone!