Thursday, September 29, 2011

My Standard to Life

This is a quote I got last summer from my young men's president back home. Its something that has helped me on the hard days throughout my mission. I hope it helps you as well. (Sorry, no pretty pictures this time)

"I am part of the fellowship unashamed; the dye has been cast. I have stepped over the line, the decision has been made. I am a disciple of Jesus Christ. I won't look back, let up, slow down, or be still.

"My past is redeemed, my presence makes sense, my future is secure. I am done with low living, small talking, colorless dreams, tamed visions, cheap giving, and dwarfed goals. I no longer need pre-eminence, positions, promotions, or popularity. I don't have to be right, first, recognized, praised, regarded, or rewarded. I now live by faith, lean on His presence, walk with patience, am uplifted by prayer and labor with power. My face is set, my gait is fast, my goal is heaven.

"My road is narrow, my way is rough, my companions are few. My guide is reliable, my mission is clear. I cannot be bought, compromised, detoured, lured away, divided, or delayed. I will not flinch in the face of sacrifice, hesitate in the presence of the adversary, negotiate at the table of the enemy, ponder at the pool of popularity or meander in the maze of mediocrity. I won't give up, shut up, or let up until I have stayed up stored up, and paid up for the cause of Christ.

"I must go till He comes, give till I drop, preach till all know, and work till He stops me, and when He returns for His own, He will have no problem recognizing me. My banner will be clear."

The greatest thing I take from this is, remember who you are and who you work for. Who are you? A child of God! Who do you work for? Jesus Christ of course.

I love you all. Keep working through the hard times.
--Elder Aaron George--

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Treasure Maps! A Perilous Journey With a Great Reward!

Alright, so this blog post was kind of put on the back burner for a few weeks because of the recent transfer. Things got a little crazy, but now I have some time to sit back and reflect on some cool personal experiences in my mission so far.

A few weeks ago, while Elder Brunson and I were serving together, we had a dinner with a family in Lewistown. As we waited for dinner to be served I grabbed a napkin and started doodling. To get the kids involved I asked "Hmm, what should I draw?" One thought for a moment and replied, "I don't know." Then I with my child-like randomness said "Oh, I know!! Let's draw a treasure map!"

As we drew our treasure maps a thought came to my mind about our Heavenly Father's plan for us and how we are given our own treasure maps. Sometimes we find our map in an old basement or dusty attic, and sometimes a friend may already have found it and asks us to go on a crazy wild adventure with them to find the treasure. In the end though its our choice whether we follow the map or not.

So, where did this map come from anyway. We have this most amazing treasure, which is life in our Heavenly Father's and Jesus Christ's presence, but who mapped it all out for us? Who showed us the way to our treasure?
...Jesus Christ did
He went through this life, full of its dangers and booby traps, just so He could show us the way. Getting to the treasure wasn't easy for Him. He had to deal with betrayal, loss, hunger, pain, hardship and trials of every sort. Why though? Why would anyone choose to live that kind of life and follow that kind of map?
The answer is simple. When it all comes down to it, the hard times were worth it because the treasure is priceless. After you finally dig up the treasure, all those trials and hardships fade away and are swallowed up in pure joy and happiness...
So, next time you face trials and ask "Why me?" remember this. It will all be worth it. The journey may be hard and full of danger, but you have your map and Christ, the one who got that map for you, suffered through it all not to keep the treasure for Himself, but to give it to all those that follow the map, have the courage to take the first step, and make it to the end.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Potter's Wheel

   Last night during my personal prayer before I went to bed I received some inspiration on this blog post. I was on my knees last night trying my hardest not to go through the motions of prayer and actually have a good one on one conversation with God. I was feeling a little anxious and excited because of the responsibility I was about to receive to train a new missionary. As usual I questioned whether I was worthy of that trust and whether or not I was ready for it. This is just one of the thoughts and feelings I received from that prayer...

   In pottery there's a special instrument in making clay pots and that is the potter's wheel. The wheel is a circular platform that spins so clay can be formed with slight effort and movement. The most important part of the process though is the beginning. Your clay has to be right on the center of the wheel, because if its not the clay is going to fly off the wheel or become impossible to work with.

   Our Heavenly Father works with us in the same fashion. We are the clay and He is the potter. He forms us to what he desires and we in turn desire to be shaped the way he wants us to. There is one condition though. For Him to begin forming and shaping us we must be in the center of His wheel. The wheel is the gospel of Jesus Christ...

As we continue to center our lives around Christ and His gopel we are able to be built up and be ready for the time when we are put into the fires of trial and struggle to be made into that which we are destined to become.

"But now, O Lord, thou art our afather; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the bwork of thy hand." (Isaiah 64:8)

The words of Isaiah are true. We are His clay and we are the work of His hand. We must let that work be a good work and center our lives upon the Gospel of Christ. I challenge everyone to bring your lives into allignment with God's will and receive the blessings He has in store for you. I leave this message in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

If you have any thoughts, feelings, or opinions about this post please feel free to share.