Monday, July 11, 2011

Doctrines, Principles, and Applications

Thanks dad for your letter and I know exactly what you mean… really it is super hard to write about something different every week because sometimes there is just nothing going on.
So I will have to take some new pictures hopefully I can take them in better lighting so that you have better pictures on your side.
I have been reading a lot in the Book of Mormon lately. I have been spending a lot of time to really study the book. To take out all that I can from the pages. I have taken to marking it and writing down my thoughts on sticky notes.  I have also made it one of my goals to come back and have the ability to answer whatever question Haleigh or Saydi has in their Spanish home work. Don’t worry girls I am coming back… just wait for me!!!!!
 I have been spending a lot of time in reflection. Thinking about how much I have changed. This all began with one of our investigators. We have an investigator that left for the United States to work when his children were 13 and 10 and like 4. When he came back 12 years later, he though in his mind he knew that his children would change, but still expected to find them a little bit like he left them. We had a very deep conversation with him that eventually lead to tears… he was having a hard time with the fact that his youngest daughter, now 16, didn’t like him and doesn’t respect what he tells her. To be honest I shared a little about our family and what has happened to us. We arrived at a humbling conclusion. He will always be the father of the family, the provider, the protector. Sometimes when we are young we cannot see that we take advantage of our blessing like the Nephites. They had many blessings, and peace in the land but because of pride all returned to war and bloodshed. Sure in this day and age we don’t use swords, axes or bows… but our words can cause more damage than material weapons. The ability to control our words is a talent. The urge to yell, more often than not, triumphs over reason. I quickly realized in this lesson that I was learning a principle of life. How do I apply this knowledge? In a talk given to missionaries in the MTC Elder Bednar said that we could have success in the mission if we applied three ideologies in our teachings. He counseled us in that we could improve every message given by categorizing the lesson in Doctrines, Principles, and Applications. For example if I wanted to teach a lesson about the Atonement (doctrine), the principles are the fall of Adam, and our purpose here on the earth and the sacrifice of Jesus Christ, and repentance.  How do I apply the Atonement? I can repent; partake of the sacrament, fast, read the scriptures about the Atonement, ect. If I apply this same system of thought to the lesson I had with my investigator, I am able to see the situation differently. In this case I began in reverse; the application is humility and an increase in love.  I need to ask myself, what could I teach him that could help him to be more humble and loving? Faiths, repentance, baptism, receive the Holy Ghost and endure to the end. Doctrine: the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This method of thinking can develop the stronger capability to teach to the needs of someone and not the lessons. I know that all I learn here in the mission is applicable outside the 2 year training period. The mission trains the missionary to be a better convert just as quickly as he is willing to accept the fact that we to must learn.
What will it be like to come back? I don’t know.
Will everyone change while I am gone? You can bet on it.
Is there any reason to worry about it? Absolutely not!
Love ya and miss ya
Elder Harris
There are only three things that i really do need. thumb drive, ankle high black boots and................................... a new journal!!!!!!!!!!!

Noe Baptism

Another Great Day!

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