Thursday, May 26, 2016

Repentance is Real!

It was so great skyping everyone yesterday! But now I have like zero new things to talk to you guys about.....things out here in Washington are going great. We had a wonderful week and are excited for the next week ahead of us. 
Today we went to Mt. St. Helens and it was a lot of fun! We hiked and saw the crater (from a distance) and I got a pretty cool tshirt. So that has been a fun experience. 

Since I already told you the is a spiritual thought for you. Something I have been pondering and studying lately and throughout my mission is obedience and the commandments. I love the thought by President Uchtdorf about the umbrellas. We think that Heavenly Father is waiting with a safe in heaven until we do something right then he throws down a blessing. But in reality he is showering blessings down but when we are disobedient we put an umbrella up. Which then causes us to not receive or recognize the blessings that he does give us. We are constantly being showered with blessings but are we allowing them into our life? The commandments are more than just rules, it is more than the primary answers of go to church, pray, etc. but they are the path back to our father in heaven. They help us to become so much more than we already are. To change our character and nature to be that of our savior. And they free us. We all can say that when we sin we feel guilt and that is the captivity of Satan. But when we are following the commandments we feel the spirit and that is freedom. Our spirits can reach their full potential and feel the love of God and the spirit abundantly. I'll be the first to say perfection is not in my character, however the savior provided a way. Repentance is real and I know it is. We have to use and apply the atonement. Don't just let it sit there without grasping it. We all have so much potential. You are a child of God. And his hands are always stretched out. I promise that it is better to take it than to take our own way. 

We meet a lot of people who are discouraged, angry, depressed, and lost. That is captivity and Christ is eternal life and joy. So what is the difference? I believe it is the spirit and we draw closer to the spirit by following the commandments. It's a simple recipe but sometimes difficult to follow. But that is why we have a whole life to be on the journey of discipleship. 

And that is why the gospel is so important. We met a man named Dan this week and he was not interested at first but he started talking about how he had lost his wife and we had an opportunity to talk to him about the plan of salvation. And we hopefully will see him on Tuesday. He was a pretty cool guy. We also taught a little bit about the plan of salvation to George. He has died like two times and wants to find purpose. He was pretty cool as well. Just gotta keep teaching and going. 

We are already ending the third week of the transfer and we are excited for Dhana and Michaels baptism in a few weeks! I love the Woodland area so much and am excited for a new week! I hope you all have a wonderful week and remember who you are :) 

Sister Stephens 

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