Sunday, September 23, 2012

Hello Everyone!
A week full of miracles! It's such a delight to see them.
So, we finally got back into contact with a couple investigators who are living together. They want to be baptized but unfortunately they have to be married first. When we saw them the other night, Chris told us he had a concern (I started getting apprehensive at this point) and explains how he wants to be married first before they get baptized. It's what he feels is the right thing to do. Relieved, we explain that that is definitely important and we proceed to talk about marriage and the temple and begin making plans with them for a time and place to be married. I tell that story for two reasons: #1 The Lord prepares the hearts and minds of His children to receive the message of the Gospel. #2 I never want to plan a wedding ever again in my life. It's not fun playing match-maker.

More miracles I've seen this week include people overcoming their addictions. We have been working with several people in their fight to overcome addictions to alcohol and especially tobacco. I have seen the Atonement at work as they strive to follow the Lord's counsel and rely on His strength. 

One very POWERFUL influence in life is that of music. Again, I have SEEN and EXPERIENCED personally the power that music can have on an individual. The First Presidency has stated, " Hymns can lift our spirits, give us courage, and move us to righteous action. They can fill our souls with heavenly thoughts and bring us a spirit of peace. Hymns can also help us withstand the temptations of the adversary." (First Presidency Preface of the Hymnbook) When one is overcoming trial and addiction, the music of the Lord can fill us with strength to overcome them. There are multiple times that in a lesson or even during a service project, my companion and I have sung a hymn and it always, ALWAYS, changes the mood of the activity. Read the hymns to yourselves and try to find the messages the Lord would have you find. I add my hope to that of the First Presidency, "We hope the hymnbook will take a prominent place among the scriptures and other religious books in our homes." There is joy in singing the hymns of the Spirit. Indeed, the Lord himself has stated, "For my soul delighteth in the song of the heart; yea, the song of the righteous is a prayer unto me, and it shall be answered with a blessing upon their heads." (D&C 25:12)
If you are facing a problem, going through some trial both large and small, or if you are even striving to overcome some addiction or some sin that easily besets you, sing away. If you hate singing or feel it's not your thing then listen to the hymn and sing it silently in your heart. Give it a shot. It's worth it.

Elder Smith

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