Monday, January 17, 2011

The Lord continues to teach me.......week 25

Serving the community of Amilcingo

The baptism of Fabiola.

My Dear Family,

It´s really good to hear from everybody. It made me smile to think that my family is still starting and completing projects during Christmas. It´s great to hear from you Dad. I bet that you are enjoying that fact that you have not been required to travel as rigorously right now as in the past. Every day I learn more and more the reasons for various things in our family. I learn and appreciate the examples set by my father, my mother, sister, brother in law, and brothers more and more as I understand bit by bit what it means to be a disciple of Jesus Christ. Thank you for all of your examples and the lessons that you continue to teach me.

This week, where to begin. We had a baptism this Sunday in the morning before the services. It was the baptism of a young woman named Fabiola. She was baptized in the morning and received the Holy Ghost after the baptismal service. It was really special to see it. We have really tried hard to animate the members to be more involved in the work. They have responded very well and I believe that the work in Amilcingo is going to be expand rapidly. That´s another thought, changes are coming up next week. Who knows what is going to happen. If you don´t hear from me you´ll know why.

The Lord has and continues to teach me many lessons that will bless the lives of many people. One of those lessons has been about service. I have thought a lot about service the past few weeks. I have studied, pondered, and the Lord has helped me to better understand what it truly means to serve. Various comments from the prophets of today as well as those of old teach us that we cannot have spirituality without service. There is nothing that makes us more happy in this world and prepares us for the world to come like selfless service to your fellow man. There is a portion in Gospel Principles that says that the work of God is wrought about through the faith and actions of men, women, and children. Like the principle of faith, the Lord works according to the faith of the children of men. In the same manner, the work of the Lord is wrought about by those who are willing to act. The love that we have for God and for man is manifest through works, particularly service. By serving with this love, we are in all reality, bringing about the work of God. I have thought a lot about this topic as well as in terms of Justice and Mercy. I have thought about how oft times when we see that someone has not been at church, has not participated in the activities, or maybe isn´t doing everything that they should, we are really quick to tell them what they should do. But the Lord taught me something extremely important. We do not knock at the door of that person to tell them all that they are doing wrong. Rather, with sincere concern for that person, we arrive at their door, ask if everything is ok, and we offer whatever we can to help them. The Lord taught me this lesson very powerfully. One demonstrates what one might understand of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This person may claim to have faith in Jesus Christ. The other however, understands what it means to take upon himself the name of Christ. This person understands how the work of God is brought about and in what manner. I hope, pray, and serve so that I can be more like the latter.

Well family, until next week, take care. I love you all dearly and never forget the grand blessing it is to be a member of the church of Jesus Christ of latter-day Saints.

Elder Russell