Thursday, 17 September 2015

Strengthening A Testimony


This week was super hot! But we still had a lot of fun. In fact we were outside on those very hot days doing service! It was fun, but I am not used to it being super hot. Elder Weaver is from Las Vegas so he is used to it. We ​racked up a lot of pine needles and then trimmed back some bushes and also cleaned a swimming pool filter and cleaned the side of another swimming pool. Service is so worth it! Makes me so happy (As it releases endorphin.) 

We also taught a seminary class this week and shared the parable of thew lost sheep and then watched a little movie clip about "Reaching out in Love". We were told that there would only be about 8 or so students but then just about we were to start another seminary class walked in so we had like 20 people there which made it a lot more fun! 

Who did we teach this week? 
Joan. She is a music teacher and she invited us to see her student do a recital at an retirement home. We showed up after they had begun and was very shocked when she saw us there! It was really cool! and I was surprised at how loud her student can sign! I could never do that! We had a lesson with her also. She always has very good questions and it was funny as she asked about what we can do on the Sabbath day. It was funny as we had practiced this lesson with a member a few days ago and then day after that we taught it to a less active member brother Bittle and then we taught her it a few days after that! So lots of practice! After we answered her question we read the Book Of Mormon as that is the most powerful thing we can do. That is the keystone of our religion. 
Meraja. We had a lesson with her and some members were with us. We went over what the church is and how it was restored from former times though the prophet Joseph Smith. The next day we did service for her.
David. We haven't been able to have a lesson with him but we have talked to him a few days this week as we live close by and see him a lot. 
Unutoa. This is a family whose father is not a member yet but we taught him a few weeks ago or so. We went over the first lesson - brother Leininger assisted us - and it was a great lesson. Elder Weaver and I asked good questions and bore testimony of the things we know for ourselves to be true. 

This week our mission president called me to inform me of a challenge my mother is having. This was shocking to hear, but I was reminded of a blessing that I received a few years ago that said that we all face life's many challenges. I was also reminded of when I was set apart as a missionary on Dec. 31st 2013. In the blessing it said the following, "You will be able to withstand any home challenges or homesickness knowing you are doing the Lords work." At the time it was interesting to hear "Home challenges" but it all makes sense now. It shows that God is omniscient and He blessed me with that blessing to be able to continue working out here in the field. 

I decided to ask God to know if the Book Of Mormon is true and I received my answer as I read the scriptures a couple days later. I was reading in 3 Nephi 21:10 which is when Jesus Christ visits the Americas (Other sheep he has) and he does many marvelous things for the, including healing many sick and much more. But He told them in this verse that a servant (Joseph smith) would be marred because of the unbelievers. Those against the church at that time of Joseph smith thought they could stop the church but killing the prophet, but further on in the verse it says that Gods "wisdom is greater than the cunning of the devil". And it is - look the church still is here today and will be until He comes again. How did this answer my question to know if the Book is true? Well it showed me that here is Jesus Christ a thousand years earlier telling us about the future of Joseph smith, and how can Joseph smith who translated this great work know how he would die? He for sure wouldn't have got together with the opposition and ask them to murder him that way - right? But is that just a coincidence that I just read that verse that day? No. So I looked up where this cross reference went to - it led me to D&C 135:1-6. In this section it recounts a little how Joseph and his brother Hyrum were marred (which fulfills what Jesus had said). Then in verse 4-5 it tells us that Hyrum was reading the bible which is how God told him through his scripture study in the bile that he would die. This was my answer that it was God was showing me that he was answering my prayer through the scriptures! 

Having this added knowledge on top of me already knowing the Book of Mormon is true is like adding a few more drops of water in a bucket named testimony. But if you were to leave it alone it would dry out due to evaporation. This is why it is important for us to always have a strong testimony of the church and of the doctrines. You always need to be filling it up. What are you doing to fill your bucket? 

In Mathew 7:11 it says, "If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father which is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?" SO when we ask God to know something he will only give that which is good. He won't tell you a lie, He can not do so. SO you can ask Him anything and he will answer you, but in His timeline and not ours.

This morning I was studying in the Scriptures (as we do every morning as missionaries - that's over 600 hours of personal study on my mission! ) I was searching in 3 Nephi 23. Jesus is still with the people here in the Americas at this time and He asks Nephi who had the records (record of Niphites which part of the B.of.M is translated from) to see them. Jesus then asked Nephi why he had not recorded that many saints had risen at the time when Jesus Christ was resurrected and ministered to them. Niphi then remembered and Christ commanded him to record it. As I saw that I asked 2 questions. 1 - How does one forget such a thing and 2 - Why is this recorded for us? It then taught me that it is important to keep a journal of our journey - because otherwise we will forget such sweet experiences. In the beginning of that scripture Jesus commands us to search the words of Isaiah diligently. Never before did I notice the word "Diligent" there. It showed to me the importance of taking our studies seriously and that we need to be diligent - otherwise our bucket will dry out. 

Last night We went to Why I believe - where people who just joined the church share their conversion story and testimony. It was amazing to hear so many testimonies about how they found the church and how God answered their prayers. One that was super cool was a man who used to be Muslim. He was Muslim first and then Agnostic for many years. He and his friends went to Utah and he asked his friends why everyone was so kind? His friends told him, "because they are Mormon!" So when he returned San Francisco he ran into two missionaries! And the rest is history. These are juts little snippets of what I can remember. Another man was raised Protestant but then he parents protested - later in life he wanted to turn his life around and started to read the bible. After a few years he wanted to join a domination. He checked many out and after a few moths he just didn't feel right about it. His few Mormon friends kept on inviting him and finally one got him to come to a activity - the friend said that it wont be church and there is free food! They said a prayer over the food and ended "In the name is Jesus Christ" He then asked his friend if we believed in Jesus Christ. Of course! He was shocked as he thought we were not followers of Jesus! Which we are. 

I know that the church if true. I also know that God answers prayer and if you pray to him you will also able able to receive light or truth in your life. I know that God is full of love and that he wants each of us to return to Him again. I know we can all do this by following his blue print that He has given us in the scriptures. I know more than I can see the computer screen that this is the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ that has been restored to the earth and I know it is true. I know you too can find out, if you will just follow the blueprint given to us in the word of God. I have found so much happiness as I have lived the Gospel and as I have shared it with others. That is one of the many reasons why I am serving for 2 years. I know that through Jesus Christ we can be cleansed of all our sins and that we can feel peace in our lives again. 

I say this in the name of Jesus Christ Amen. 

PS. The church just came out with this awesome video of kids about helping them to know what to do when they see pornography. Here is the link 
It is awesome! And shows that it is never to early to teach your children about this. 


Elder Kloosterboer 

Cleaning the swimming pool