“ … And they were also distinguished for their zeal towards God, and also towards men; for they were perfectly honest and upright in all things; and they were firm in the faith of Christ, even unto the end.” - Alma 27:27

Monday, April 18, 2016

THE SABBATH: A Day of Peace, Preparation & Protection

Good Afternoon Everybody!!! I have the best family ever! 

Jake, CONGRATULATIONS ON THE ENGAGEMENT!!!!! I love you! I am proud of you for always being an example to me and setting the pace. Ali, Danny, Dallas, Jake, Mom, Dad, and even you little Llama-you've set the bar high, and it keeps getting higher! I'm grateful for the best family in the whole world, and it keeps getting bigger. I am so blessed! This past week was filled with many joys and miracles. I'm grateful for the tender mercies that never cease and the rejoicing that comes as we focus on the Lord and our families.

One of the greatest blessings that came last week was going to Singapore for zone conference and training.One of the things we prepared to learn with was how we delight in the Sabbath as missionaries. Originally, I was stumped. We wear our church clothes; just like every other day. We teach and serve people; just like every other day. We take the Sacrament and renew our covenants, but oftentimes, that moment in my week goes by too fast to reflect on anything because I'm so focused on what has happened already rather than what will happen in the future. 

As I prayed and pondered, I was brought back to one of the simplest truths. We must put the Lord first. Sunday is the first day of the week, but how often do we consider it as the last day of the weekend? We normally work Monday through Saturday and think of Sunday as our "rest" day to catch up on everything, but what if we changed our thinking to understand that Sunday is the day to prepare for everything? It is the first day of the week. Before Monday, we take the Sacrament, have a fresh start, serve the Lord, give all we have to Him, and we receive the promise to have the Spirit with us always. I pray that I can always put the Lord first and treat Sunday as the first day of the week; a day of preparation and protection for the things coming rather than a day of hurry and rush to catch up on everything from last week.

While sitting on a plane back to Miri, I was next to a middle-aged Chinese man. As soon as I said, "Hello!" he said, "Don't talk to me, I know who you are, and I know you'll just try to convert me." That made me laugh a little bit, even if he didn't think it was very funny. After a very personal sincere prayer, and a few very simple, noninvasive questions, he opened up a little bit and started pelting me with questions. He wanted to know everything! He is Christian and had heard STRANGE rumors about the Church of Jesus Christ. After about an hour of discussion, I asked if he had any more questions, and then I shared with him the Restoration. He was a completely different person compared to when we first sat down. He was willing to listen. He responded to the things I shared and to the questions I extended. There was a special spirit there at that time because he felt understood. 

I know that we must first seek to understand before we expect to be understood. I love bearing witness of the Restoration and a Savior that continues to direct us today through a living prophet. I know these things are true!

I love being a missionary! When we put the Lord first in our life, we truly don't have to worry about anything else. Sure, there are daily struggles and problems that we learn from, but everything is for our good. I am learning so much, and I feel peace as I rely on the Lord to guide me.

I want to be better. I want to change. I want to serve the Lord as best as I can. Thank you for the letters your write, the prayers you give, and the examples you've set. I love serving the Lord, and I will do all I can to follow him and help others do the same. 

Love, Elder Lloyd

No comments:

Post a Comment