Here we are finally! It has been a hectic week! I didn't think this day would ever come. But, thanks to the help of Heavenly Father, I was able to get through it all and everything turned out great! It was a good week, just exhausting.
We had to go to 6 week training this week, which put a wrench into the week. But it was still super good! I got to learn a lot and I got to get together with some of my old MTC pals! They are all super great and I was so happy to see them! They all seem to be doing good and are adjusting pretty okay, which is good to hear.
I got to go to a steakhouse this week! That was delicious! This part member couple, the Crocketts, took us Greenwood sisters and the Fort Smith elders out to eat, cuz they are well off financially, and were able to all have a fun time together. It was a little bit of a sad evening because Elder Yeates, who also was my zone leader, was being transferred out of the area. We were all sad to see him go! He was an amazing zone leader and a really good missionary.
The next night, we went over and cooked dinner for the Crocketts, which was fun! I miss cooking so much and I was happy to have that opportunity. It was also a great service for Annie Crockett, as she had been exhausted and we don't know if she would have eaten anything if we hadn't been there to make dinner. However, I did make a silly mistake. I accidentally cut my hand off! It was quite messy, with blood all over the place. Just kidding! I didn't cut my whole hand off, just a few fingers. Actually, it was a cut on my hand, but it still hurt like crazy! I'm not used to using sharp knives when cooking. But thankfully, the couple wasn't around, so they didn't find out!
The two girls, Kadie and Presley, had their interview, which went really well. They both passed! Hip hop hooray! So we were able to have them baptized on Saturday, which was good. It was a busy day, as Sister Nelson and I had so much to do! We had to help out with a funeral in the morning, with food and cleaning. Then, we had to make a small refreshment for after the baptism, while we filled the font, printed the program, and set up chairs. It was chaos that day and we didn't have time for much else. When people started freaking show up, it was a little hectic. You could tell Satan was working, trying to disrupt the holy meeting we had planned. But, all worked out just fine, as Kadie and Presley were baptized and then confirmed yesterday. I was so happy for them!
This week, I would like to talk to you all about personal study. Unfortunately, it is from my own follies and experiences this week. With all the things we had to do this week, we didn't have time to have personal studies. Because of that, my Spirit started to go hungry and needed nourishment. I had some struggles because of it and it was harder to be in tune with the Spirit. I learned how important it is to take time to study the gospel, pray about certain things, and seek Heavenly Father's guidance and answers. Now, I was still praying and I was trying to get answers from the Holy Ghost. However, it was much harder as I had not been able to look for the answers and gain knowledge of these things.
I would like to invite you all to take time out of your day and study the gospel. Now, I spend an hour, which doesn't feel like long enough for me, but you do not need to make it that long. Twenty to thirty minutes will be just fine. Now some of you may think this is too long, that your current Book of Mormon reading takes about 5 minutes, if not less. Take another look at those 5 minute studies. Are you getting all you can from what you are reading? Are you actively looking for answers and learning about the stories and teachings? If not, it might do you better to take a little longer.
There are many different ways to read the Book of Mormon. You can read it straight through, study a certain subject and look for relating scriptures, jump to your favorite parts, use cross references. There are many options. Find what best works for you. I recommend that if you feel as if you don't know the Book of Mormon well enough, to start from the beginning and intently read each chapter with spiritual eyes.
It also is helpful to start with a prayer. You can ask Heavenly Father certain questions and look for the answers as you read. You can ask for the guidance of the Holy Spirit to help you find and read what you need. You can pray to know what is the best way to study. Never be afraid to ask Heavenly Father for guidance and direction. If you have the faith, He will answer. The only times He doesn't is if we are lacking on our part or perhaps it is not the time for us to receive the answer.
Taking notes is also beneficial. You can keep record to certain insights you receive so that you might look back on them and see how what you studied helped you at that time or be reminded of what you need to do.
I would like to ask all of you to try and study in the morning or the day. Though there is nothing wrong with studying at night, as you still can get that spiritual guidance. However, it can be harder to pay attention and the events of the day may distract you and you may be too tired to invest your full attention. You also are able to receive that spiritual strength at the beginning of your day when you do it in the morning and find yourself more in tune with the Spirit as you go throughout your day.
Lastly, I hope you are all doing Come, Follow Me. For those of you who aren't, I would invite you to please do so. Whether you are a family or one person, it doesn't matter. It was made for family and individuals. If you are missing out on family discussions, I would invite you to take time a study it on your own. It is a valuable tool and you will find your knowledge and spirituality increase.
I know that this will bless your life, as you can be closer to your Heavenly Father and have the Spirit in your life more. You will find it easier to choose right from wrong. I have seen it change my life and I can feel the difference when I don't take the time to feed my spirit. I know we have a Heavenly Father who loves us and I know the Holy Ghost can guide us in our lives every day.
I love you all and I hope you have a wonderful week.
Love, Sister Savannah Johanson