Sunday, July 13, 2014

I bid you farewell

Today I had the opportunity to give my farewell talk! I was so blessed to be able to speak on my favorite scripture and the one that will be placed on my mission plaque. I can't believe in just 10 days from today.. I will be on my way to starting my wonderful mission adventure! ENJOY! 

Good morning brothers and sisters,

I find it crazy to think that in just 10 short days I will officially be a full time missionary, and because of that, I get to share with you my favorite scripture and my testimony today. My favorite scripture is found in the Book of Mormon, Mosiah chapter 7 verse 33. At this point, Ammon and a couple other brethren have made their way to the land of Lehi-Nephi, and a man name Limhi is king. At this time, King Limhi’s people are in bondage to the Lamanities…King Limhi was a righteous king who wanted to do what was right. In Verse 33 at the very end of the chapter, King Limhi gives his people great advice, It reads (he says):

But if ye will turn to the Lord with full purpose of heart, and put your trust in him, and serve him with all diligence of mind, if ye do this, he will, according to his own will and pleasure, deliver you out of bondage.

I love this scripture because of how simply the concept is laid out. We are told exactly what we need to do, and we are told the blessing that comes along with it. In this scripture we are promised that the Lord will deliver us out of bondage. This doesn’t mean when we are taken by someone and tied up, or enslaved by someone else. Of course we can look at it that way, but it can also mean that he will deliver us from hard things, times when we are struggling, when we see no way out, when we are afflicted and feel broken. He promises that he will help us in our time of need, when we are lost or alone and have no where else to turn, he will be there, and he will relieve us from what is holding us back.

For this blessing to occur in our lives, The Lord asks us to do a few things.

 Number one: turn to him with full purpose of heart.
He wants us to look to him in everything that we do. He wants us to recognize his hand in our lives and appreciate what we have. The Lord wants us to really give everything we have to him, our time, our effort, and most importantly, our hearts. He wants us to want to look towards him, to love, trust and to serve him with our whole being. Even when we feel like we might not have anything to give, nothing to offer, he just wants to see us try.

Number two: put your trust in him
The Lord wants to know that we accept his will, that even when hard times may be at hand, that we lean unto him as the one who we can trust. Even when our path seems cloudy, we should always remember that no matter the amount of visibility, the Lord will get us through. It might not be the way we want, or the way we expect, but we will be brought through with greater growth and understanding of God’s love for us. How comforting it is to know that he can see the beginning to the end, that he knows what path to lead us down to get us to where we want to go. It’s up to us to trust him, and not worry about anything after that. It isn’t as easy as it sounds, but the Lord recognizes our efforts. I love the scripture found in Proverbs (it reads): “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.“In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths”.
The third and final thing that the Lord asks us to do, before he promises to deliver us out of bondage would be to:  serve him with all diligence of mind

We must be willing to serve, now this could be in the form of a full time mission, your church calling, or even helping your family or your neighbor, in Mosiah chapter 2 it says “When ye are in the service of your fellow beings, ye are only in the service of your God.” It is as simple as that. But we must do it with all diligence. We must put everything we have into serving. We have to look for the chances to reach out and uplift and make someone’s day brighter every chance that we see. That isn’t always an easy task. I find it hard sometimes to help others when it would be so much easier to do something else more selfish. But the blessings that come from serving others are tremendous and I’m so excited to have the opportunity to spend 18 months focused completely on others and making their lives better and bringing them closer to Christ, while coming closer to him myself. 


The last part of the scripture that I want to mention is a part that is easily overlooked. Let me read the end of the scripture again

“..If ye do this (this being the three points we just talked about), He will, according to his own will and pleasure, deliver you out of bondage.”


Brothers and Sisters, the Lord wants to help you. He wants to make your life easier, he wants to direct you in your life. But he will not take away your agency. As you look to the Lord and show him that you want him in your life by following Christ’s example of service and diligence, by trusting his will, and doing all you can to dedicate yourself to him whole heartedly. He will GLADLY bring you peace and comfort and deliver you out of the binds that hold you down.

But if ye will turn to the Lord with full purpose of heart, and put your trust in him, and serve him with all diligence of mind, if ye do this, he will, according to his own will and pleasure, deliver you out of bondage.

It’s a simple scripture but as you look into it more, you can see that it give us instruction to help us continually move forward.


Until next time, 

-- Sister Wagner

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