June 27, 2011 Gyumri 1 (North) – Week 6
Ye Shall Be Delivered
“And now…I would that ye should remember, that as much as ye shall put your trust in God even so much ye shall be delivered out of your trials, and your troubles, and your afflictions, and ye shall be lifted up at the last day.” – Alma 38:5
I really have seen this in my life and more importantly in the lives of others. I know that the Heavenly Father is a personable God. He truly cares about us on an individual basis. He loves each one of us with to an unfathomable degree. Because of this love, he has sent us here to this earth, to learn and grow from our trials as well as to learn to rely on his all-powerful hand. It is in relying on him through our trials that we find joy. Too often we trial and solve a problem with a quick fix, when really the resolution is merely a life lesson that we need to learn. If we rely on God and trust him, enough to keep all of his commandments he will guide us through our trials and we will feel that indescribable love.
This week was very successful as far as personal growth is concerned, but few people accepted the message. Few people really came to understand the urgency of salvation and being cleaned from our sins. As I was standing in a field, waiting for a man to come and meet us I asked to myself, a silent prayer to God, “What was I supposed to do differently this week, what did I do that caused these people to make the choice to reject this truth?” Then the Lord answered my prayer with a divine feeling. A small but unforgettable miracle. It felt as though a blanket was wrapped around my shoulders and I heard in my mind, “Do not doubt, I am pleased with your work”. I smiled. I was amazed once again that God would answer my prayer so perfectly, so quickly and so personally.
I had another experience this week with the Spirit, the Lord’s guidance. We have a few individuals investigating the church in a housing development called “Moosh”.
Elder Frye and I went out to meet with a few people, with whom we had previously planned to meet. They weren’t home. We were disappointed that people would so openly trick and disrespect us. We started to walk towards home for dinner, when I was prompted to pause and pray “Is there somewhere that we should go before we return home?”
I had a feeling that we needed to walk due west along a straight road. I felt a small tug in that direction. I wasn’t sure, but I thought that it was a divine tug. I wasn’t sure if it was me just thinking and then I turned right (North) to walk down a different road when I felt another fascinating sensation. Right about where my heart is I felt as though a compass inside of me had turned and was pointing West, despite my turning North. So I tested the feeling and I started walking South and the compass spun to point West. We continued walking West. We reached a point when the tug and compass faded. Elder Frye and I were left next to a few apartment buildings. I saw a few men looking at us. They were standing by a wall. I quickly thought of what I could do, to give them the chance to talk with us, without making them feel awkward about a random American starting a spiritual conversation (It is illegal to openly proselyte, unless they start the religious conversation.). A question came to my mind, “Ask about the address here in Moosh?” So I walked over, politely asked if there was a 39th Building. He said no I thanked him and started to slowly walk away. We stopped us and said, “So what are you two doing here in Armenia?”
To make the story short, we spoke to these men. One of them was seeking to know how to feel free from the burden of sin. He wanted all of those guilty feelings to be taken away. I promised him that they could be through Faith, Repentance, Baptism by Water and Receiving the Gift of the Holy Ghost. We planned a meeting for the next day and parted. I was again amazed that God would so gently and yet so precisely guide us to his Children who were seeking his help.
I know that Christ did leave that “Comforter”. He did not leave us alone. He left it to bless us if we decide to follow Him. The Spirit does no good for someone who won’t listen. If we don’t want to follow Christ, why would the spirit bless us with spiritual gift and guidance toward Christ? He won’t.
I know that as we read the Words of Christ and seek to follow his example we will be filled with God’s Love and therefore God’s Power.
3 Nephi 12:6 “And blessed are all they who do hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled with the Holy Ghost.”