Guess what! I am going to be twenty! 20!
Guess what else. I weighed myself in the doctor's office with Hermana Pitcher and I gained fifteen- twenty pounds.
Thoughts on covenants and the Atonement: As a mission we’re studying the “Bear Up Your Burdens with Ease” by Elder Bednar, May 2014. You can watch or read it here. Lots of studying and pondering on that talk, I’ve had to read it a couple times to start to get it. Elder Bednar went pretty complex with his analogy.
A few thoughts:
- Many times I think of the “load” as something that has to be some natural catastrophic event that is horrible. But it is a much broader definition than that. I think a “load” (or a good load) is “any aspect of our lives that pushes us to rely on the Atonement of Christ.” That could be an awful disaster, but it could also be a new job that we want to do well in, a calling that stretches, a desire to be a good parent, a desire to be more charitable, a desire for more direction, a big decision to make, wanting to help someone else or have better discernment.
- We need to evaluate the THINGS in our life-- Ask myself, “Is this thing something that is pushing me to use the atonement? Could I be using the Atonement in this thing to make it go better?” If the answer to those questions is No, drop it. It’s a waste of space in your life.
I was studying the analogy and some ideas came in the form of pictures about cows.
It’s kind of hard to see, sorry. Repaso (a review):
1. A little cow pulling a cart full of bubbles. He says, “This is easy, I can do this by myself.” The bubbles are meaningless loads.
2. The little cow gets stuck in the snow and doesn’t have the traction to get out. The snow is inevitable. The cow says “Stuck.”
3. The little cow replaces the bubbles with weighty loads-- real loads-- to get traction. He says “But, I'm still stuck,” because now the cart is heavy.
4. A big cow comes along and yokes himself to the little cow and his load. The little cow doesn’t really like the idea of a yoke, but he needs help so he does it.
5. The big cow pulls with the little cow and they get unstuck. The little cow starts to trust the big cow and since the big cow knows how to get home (where all the other happy cows are), the little cow allows himself to be led. They have to go through a couple other snowy patches and sometimes the big cow lets the little cow pull a little more so he can get stronger, put he’s always there and he’s always pulling.
The caption says: “If we never had to pull heavy loads, we would never have needed Him. But if we never needed Him, we would have never asked for his help and would have known how to get home.” And below that it says, “All we have to do is take the yoke, push a little, and WALK-- Follow Him.”
I think the snow (maybe) is our natural man-- our natural nature that makes it impossible for us to be with/like Heavenly Father. We can’t get over the natural man without Christ.
I think the yoke is covenants. We put some restrictions on ourselves SO THAT we can have somebody else pull and so that we can be led by someone who knows what they’re doing. When taking the yoke, we have to decide what we want more: What we want right now (our freedom) or the happiness of the end destination. We have to trust Heavenly Father’s word that the end destination really is better.
A veces (sometimes), Heavenly Father drops rocks on our carts to pop the bubbles and give us a really big incentive to ask Christ to help us. Some people still don’t. But what we can do is “compel ourselves to be humble”--CHOOSE to take on big challenges (usually service) that require us to use His help-- put our own rocks in our own cart. It’s kind of like what Elder Holland said about living in the “Realm of Miracles”-- we need to live in such a way that we could not do it alone.
|Sisters De Leon, Lia, Torales, and Castro|
For the Stress Management capacitacion (training session) we did a visual at the end where Elder Samano (assistant to the mission president) read the Doctrine & Covenants 84 verse about Christ on our right and our left and before our face with angels round about.
"... I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up." — Doctrine and Covenants 84:88
Before reading it, the assistants selected a sister from the congregation, told everyone to close their eyes, led the sister onto the stage and turned off the lights, and after reading the scripture we opened our eyes and the sister was on the stage in the middle of the figures of Christ and angels, a graphic description of the verse. It was very, very moving.
Life as a capacitadora (trainer) is going swimmingly. I’ve learned that you are NOT happy unless you are working. Being in the field and teaching all day, every day is where a missionary ought to be. A couple times we had off days where we planned for half a day or wasted a lot of time planning and couldn’t do intercambios (exchanges with other missionaries) until the next day-- and it was really bad. But as soon as I was working with the hermanas, I was super happy. And all of my intercambios are going well.