Monday, July 24, 2017

It's weird to think that we're almost done with the transfer, 

and with July altogether! 

This is us with Erica, the sister that was sealed to her parents, husband, and children on Saturday!  We didn't have a lot of time to go to their luncheon to celebrate, but we were biking by the church and stopped by (hence why my face is so red).
This week we had the immense privilege of going to the temple with a family as they received their own endowments, and then to attend their sealing this weekend. It was humbling and so, so beautiful! A little bit of backstory - Alejandra joined the church first, and has since worked with the rest of her family, and now three of her sisters and their whole families are members and her parents and her own husband and children are all members as well. She's also brought a lot of friends into the church. Well, on Tuesday, Alejandra's father, her sister Erica, and her brother-in-law Miguel all received their endowments. Friday, we witnessed a set of four sealings in the same room - first, Alejandra and Erica's parents were sealed, then Alejandra and Erica were sealed to them, then Erica and Miguel were sealed, then their two kids were brought in and sealed to them. The room was so, sooo full of love and happiness, and incredible emotion! We were so humbled to be asked to come by the family. Alejandra was crying so many tears of happiness, it warmed my heart. That is the joy of sharing the gospel!!

But because of all of our trips to the temple this past week and a half, we're running out of miles that we're allowed to use on our car. So we've been biking a lot more - on Saturday we biked 11.3 miles in the afternoon heat and I thought I might die. And then yesterday, as we were biking to try to visit a less active, there was a MONSOON! We were absolutely SOAKED through, every time I peddled my foot went into water, the street was so flooded! Luckily most of my things only received little to no water damage, but my bag was definitely not made for rainy climates! And we didn't get the phone out of the side pocket and inside of Sister Hanson's bag fast enough, so now the touch screen isn't working ... which means it's impossible for us to do anything but answer if someone calls. It's a problem ... but hopefully we'll get it worked out soon! Anyway, as wet as we got and as crazy as it was, it was actually kind of fun and definitely makes for a good story. We were all excited that this less active was DEFINITELY going to let us in (we've never met them) but they still didn't answer the door ... oh well!

Sad news from this week, though - remember the member who told us she wanted to get her two kids baptized? She cancelled four lessons we had set up with her this week and we have since not been able to get a hold of her and she did not come to church, nor did the kids. So ... they're not going to be able to get baptized this weekend most likely :/ 

But we got in touch with Luis again! He's not quite as prepared as we thought, he was talking about how busy he was and that he didn't have much time in his life right now. We talked about putting the things of the Lord first, and as we were talking with him I felt one of the strongest promptings of my mission. He's working on building a house in Mexico for his mom, and I said, "If you read one verse in the Book of Mormon every day this week, you will receive a call from Mexico, and something that is not working out with your project will be resolved." We were both a little shocked by it, but I felt the Spirit confirm, as did Sister Hanson, that it was an inspired promise that would come to pass if he did his part. So we're praying for him and hope he'll accept the blessings our Father in Heaven is trying to give him!

Thursday night we held English classes for the first time! Only one person came, but we all still felt like it was successful (we're just starting so not everyone knows about it yet). Also, it was SO nice and refreshing to be teaching like that again! It wasn't exactly how I usually teach, but it definitely had theatrical elements of role playing and I felt much more comfortable in that setting than teaching as a missionary haha - just because I feel more confident that I know what I'm doing.

I've been reading a lot in 1 and 2 Samuel and getting a LOT out of the stories! 1 Samuel 28 - Saul goes to a witch to have her conjure up the spirit of the prophet Samuel since God won't answer his prayers. Verse 14's footnote talks about how the vision of 'Samuel' was not of God. Therefore, it must have been of the devil. But everything prophesied comes to pass. Why? Because, as the footnote says, the effect of the vision was to destroy all hope. Saul wasn't fated to die in the way that he did - if he'd truly turned to the Lord, he could have received forgiveness. But the evil spirit masquerading as Samuel lied and convinced him it was impossible and he should just give up (vs. 16). It was a spirit of despair, and Saul made its words a reality by fatalistically believing them. He's the one who gave up on the Lord, not the other way around. We need to be careful not to let the devil deceive us into thinking the Lord has given up on us, because He never will - His arms are always stretched out to us!

Hermana Garner

Thursday, July 20, 2017

So Much Going On 

There is SO MUCH going on I feel like I can barely wrap my head around it! Each day has felt like a year this past week, and we've hardly had any time to catch a breath or two.

One of the biggest things that happened this week was going to the temple with Claudia. She was baptized about a year ago, but when we got to this area Hna Hanson and I discovered that somehow she'd been forgotten about and no one had talked to her about going to the temple.  The Spirit was INCREDIBLY strong. After she'd changed and we were heading out of the temple, she expressed, "I feel - weird. I feel this joy and happiness that I didn't even know was possible. It's almost bursting out of me." She expressed how she could feel gratitude from those she did the work for, and I told her I felt the same. It was a wonderful, wonderful experience that strengthened my testimony incredibly, and hers as well. 

Tuesday afternoon was a bit rough - we got in a car accident. I tried to pass someone who looked like they were pulled over to the side, but it turned out they were turning left and just hadn't turned their turn signal on. They drove off, and neither us nor the sheriff's department could find them - they probably didn't have insurance. It wasn't a bad accident, the car was still drivable and neither Hna Hanson and I got hurt, but it was definitely a little scary! We felt protected by the Lord and were grateful for that!

That night we had a great lesson with a part-member family, and the father committed to come to church. Of course, then they went out of town for two weeks ... but we feel confident that he'll start progressing when they get back!

Wednesday we stopped by Luis (the new investigator we put on date last week) only to find that he

was rushing out the door to get to work - he got a new job at a restaurant opening up here, Pita Jungle. Well, they were having a friends and family day last Friday as a promotional (they open today) and he invited us to come for free. We decided to go, and the food was AMAZING!!! It was a $45 meal that we got for free, appetizer, entrees, dessert, drinks - we felt so spoiled!
Luis had committed to come to church, but he didn't show up, so he's unfortunately not on date for the 29th anymore, but we have an appointment tomorrow, so we'll see how it goes!​

  Thursday morning we met two new potentials who told us they'd really like to learn more, that they're looking for a church to go to, so we're excited about that! And then Thursday night we had an interesting lesson with our new investigator Ana - her husband came downstairs and basically anti-ed us while we were sitting there, but she was tuning him out and reading the restoration pamphlet, and when he started talking about how we worshiped Joseph Smith she interrupted him and said, "Dejame hablar," (Let me talk) before rebuking him and saying, "Reading this, they don't worship him, they just see him as a disciple." Sister Hanson and I were like, "EXACTLY," and her husband quieted down a bit and we were able to commit Ana and her mother to both read and pray about the Book of Mormon, and they seem to have a sincere desire to learn

  Friday we had an incredible experience with Angelina - she's progressing slowly, but still progressing. She understands what she needs to do, and what she's not doing, in order to receive her answer. She was another investigator who went out of town for the weekend, but she committed yet again to come to church next week. We feel so strongly that if she comes to church she'll receive her answer about if the church is true! She wants to know, and keeps asking us about how she can develop more faith, and how she can help her family members do the same.

Sunday was our busiest day this week, but it was also a day when I saw one of the biggest miracles of my entire mission! None of the people we invited came to church, and we were pretty disappointed, but were moving forward in the faith that we would, somehow, have four baptisms this transfer. Well, just after sacrament we hurried up to introduce ourselves to a less active who's never answered her door for us, and she says, "Hey, thanks for coming over - I have two kids that I want to get baptized." We were floored, and met the kids - they want to get baptized too, we just need to make sure they understand everything and aren't just doing it as a 'cultural' thing but understand that it's a promise with God - and that their parents understand that part of their kids keeping that promise will be coming to church, so they have to recommit to their own covenants and bring them. But as of now, they're scheduled to be baptized on the 29th!

And then there were two new people in the Gospel Principles class, relatives of recent converts who are getting sealed this week in the temple, who are having us over for an FHE tonight, so there's a lot of potential there as well!

This morning we enjoyed a hike as a zone, and it was fun! I was also rather pensive, I recorded some of my thoughts and will send them to you in a video.​

There was SO much I learned in my studies this week, I feel like I could write a novel. I'll do my best not to. 

1 Samuel 1:18 - I was incredibly struck by the faith that Hannah had. The moment she'd received her promise from Eli the priest, she went away rejoicing with no doubt in her heart that she would be given the promised child and blessing. 

1 Samuel 2:10 (footnote b) - "anointed" is translated from the Greek "christos." So "Christ" is a variant of "anointed," meaning his name and title signifies His calling of the Lord.

2 Nephi 16:6-7 - The Seraphim put a LIVE coal on Isaiah's mouth to cleanse him. Repentance is not a painless process, though it is worth it - as a result, Isaiah could see and converse with the Lord.

1 Samuel 4 - The Children of Israel brought out the Ark of the Covenant to war thinking it would protect them, but they were unworthy, so instead they were smitten and it was taken. The Lord cannot protect us if we are not keeping our covenants.

1 Samuel 15 - Saul justified sinning against the Lord by not destroying all of the Amalekite's flocks by saying he did it to sacrifice to the Lord. But our wisdom is not greater than the Lord's - we must obey in all things and not yield to our own desires and judgements, even if they seem righteous (vs. 22)
(Last one, I promise!) 1 Samuel 17:40, 49 - Even though David only needed 1 stone to kill Goliath, he prepared himself with 5.

Hermana Garner

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Happy 4th of July

This was such a great week, I've been so excited to write to you about it!

Monday and Tuesday were pretty slow and we unfortunately didn't get to see many people, but we still had some great experiences! And then, Tuesday night, all the missionaries got together at one of the churches to spend the 4th of July there (we weren't allowed to be out proselyting for safety). It was SO much fun, I took a few videos - we had a short little devotional, where Elder Janda, who's from France, thanked us for all being there to celebrate the independence of his country, America, even though we were all immigrants. It was pretty hilarious. I was spontaneously asked to play the National Anthem on the piano and botched it, but it didn't matter. I used the decorations you sent to decorate the gym and we played a bunch of games in there and just enjoyed our time together. Driving home, we got to see some of the fireworks which was a tender mercy!

And then, we got to go to the temple Wednesday morning!
It was a surprise, we were told just the day before, but it was definitely a welcome surprise. I felt so much peace and love from the Lord as I was there, and was again incredibly grateful that I was sent to a mission where I have the opportunity to go to the House of the Lord often!

Wednesday was FULL of miracles, but I'll just talk about one to save time - we had an extra hour of time because some of our plans fell through, so we prayed before leaving the house to know where to go. As we got in the car, Hna Hanson says, "Let's go try the potential we have in the apartments." The story behind this apartment is literally just that someone told us they thought they heard someone speaking Spanish inside. So it was a sketchy referral, we didn't know anything about them, and the few times that we'd knocked no one had answered. But we followed the prompting and headed over, and heard a vacuum on inside, so we at least knew someone was home and we were going to figure out if they spoke Spanish or not, or were even interested.  Well, this man comes out, introduces himself as Luis, and yes, he does speak Spanish. He says, "Yeah, I know quite a bit about Mormons, but I've never tried it out." I felt the Spirit super strongly and just said, "Well, we're going to invite you to try it out." He smiled and said, "Okay, sure."He didn't have a lot of time, and we had to travel to another appointment on the other end of our area, so we only were able to talk to him for fifteen minutes. But at the end of those fifteen minutes he agreed to read and pray, and committed to be baptized on JULY 29TH if he knows it's true!!!!!!!  It was seriously SUCH a miracle!!!! Pray that he'll get his answer and follow through!!!

There were a couple of less exciting things - we were really excited for Sunday, because we had 17 investigators and potentials who had agreed to come to church ... and literally not a single one of them showed up. Which was really disheartening, but I'm deciding to grow my faith instead of start to doubt! I still believe we'll have four baptisms this transfer!

The other frustrating thing (that was also a miracle, really) was that we tracted into this member, and he got super excited when we told him we were Spanish missionaries. He told us that his neighbor has been investigating the church. Here's the thing - she's been meeting with the English missionaries and going to the English ward, but she doesn't speak English!!!!!!! She has an interpreter who's coming to her lessons and going to church with her, but she doesn't catch quite everything and wants to participate in Gospel Principles but can't. We texted her and she was SO excited, she had no idea that there was a Spanish ward let alone Spanish missionaries.

  In other news, our AC broke AGAIN, Hna Hanson and I have been unintentionally matching our outfits every day which is just ridiculous, and this morning in the shower I looked down and THERE WAS A SCORPION CRAWLING ON MY FOOT!!!!!!!!!!! One of the most TERRIFYING moments of my life!!!!!

I've been learning SO MUCH from the Old Testament! I love it! ​In Joshua 10, there's a story about one of the battles that Israel had with the kings of the Canaanites. They were vastly outnumbered, but the Lord told Joshua not to fear, that He had delivered them into their hands. Well, in verse 11, the Canaanites are running away and "great stones from heaven" fall on them, and the scripture says that more people died from those than from the men of Israel battling them. It truly shows who won that battle, and it wasn't the children of Israel!​

​2 Nephi 9:52 - "Let your hearts rejoice." This phrase stood out to me so much. Joy is a choice, though at times a hard one to make, and the Lord will help us as we seek it!​

Joshua 23:6 - this verse relates being courageous to keeping the commandments of God, and I'd never associated that word with obedience before. It was really interesting, and gave me a new perspective!

Anyway, just some of what I learned this week! Hope you're all enjoying your scripture study as well!!

Hermana Garner

Here are a couple of videos from this week

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

It was a really incredible, eventful week! 

I've seen the Lord's hand so much in my life as this week has gone on, and Hna Hanson and I are really excited for the rest of the transfer!

On Wednesday we had zone conference, which was an amazing experience for a number of reasons. Hna Shaffer and I sang in a small group for the musical number, "I Need Thee Every Hour," which is my favorite hymn in the hymn book. It was a great experience, I was glad to be able to use my talents! And the training that we received in zone conference was really amazing - we talked a lot about the power of bearing testimony and received a promise that if we had 10 quality gospel discussions a day (even if people aren't interested) and always, always ask for referrals, that baptisms in the mission would double. Hna Hanson and I have committed to do that, and we've met so many people and seen them put directly into our path by the Lord as we've striven to do so! As a zone, we also made a very prayerful goal of having 18 baptisms this transfer. When Hna Hanson and I were praying in our companionship about what our goal should be, we felt very strongly that we should settle on the number 4. It's a bit daunting at moments for me, since I haven't had any baptisms my whole mission, but we've talked a lot this week about how the Lord loves impossible odds. I feel no doubt that as we continue to work diligently, the Lord will bring those 4 people to us one way or another who are prepared to receive Him and make covenants! Our whole zone has seen so many miracles as we've continued to pray and fast for this goal.

We got two new investigators this week, which I know was a huge answer to prayer and a fulfillment of the promises we received at zone conference! One of them was Luisa. We met her a week or so ago, and gave her a Book of Mormon. She said she was never home, but we stopped by to see if we could catch her or one of the other people who live there, and she happened to be preparing to leave for Mexico for the weekend, so had some time to talk. She let us in, and we taught her the first lesson. The spirit was so strong! She's already been reading the Book of Mormon, she wants to know how we can know if what's written in any of the scriptures is true and which church is really God's church, and when we shared the story of the first vision her jaw dropped and she was obviously touched by the spirit. At the end of the lesson we invited her to be baptized when she knew these things were true, and though she didn't commit to a date or anything she said that she does want to know if it's true and will read and pray, and she's coming to church with us this coming week! Pray for her and the rest of our investigators!

 Juan and Sandra are back in Guadalajara, but they're continuing to go to church and meet with the missionaries! We just got an email from Juan that they went to church yesterday and that their daughters came with them and loved it, that they felt the spirit very strongly. Juan's wanted to be baptized for a while now, he's praying for the Lord to open the hearts and minds of his family members so he can be baptized with them soon :)

 Angelina's one of our investigators :) We invited her to be baptized this past week, and she said she doesn't agree with organized religion and doesn't want to be baptized in any church. We talked about how it's not about joining a church but about making a covenant with God under the proper authority in his established way. She softened after that, and is praying to know if baptism is something the Lord wants her to do (she even prayed for it right there in front of us at the close of the lesson, which was awesome!)

I've been reading a lot in the Old Testament, I'm really behind on my schedule to finish reading all of the standard works before I finish my mission and am trying to catch up. There's been a lot that I've learned, I just love the Old Testament so much!

Deuteronomy 7:7-18 - I related this scripture to John 14:21.Deuteronomy 8:2-6 - Verse 2 especially stood out to me personally, about how the Lord tries us to see what's in our heart and if we will follow Him. I want to show Him that I will, regardless of my trials.

Deuteronomy 10:2 (footnote) - This verse confused me when I first read the Old Testament - why would the Lord have Moses break the tablets just to write the same things on the second ones that he made? But with the JST we learn that the Lord said "And I will write on the tables the words that were in the first tables which thou brakest, save the words of the everlasting covenant of the holy priesthood..." They didn't qualify themselves for the higher law, so it was taken from them.

2 Nephi 2:1-3 - I'm going to retype this scripture in the way that it stood out to me personally as I read it this past week, and the way I likened the scriptures to myself: " thy childhood thou hast suffered afflictions and much sorrow ... Nevertheless, ... thou knowest the greatness of God; and he shall consecrate thine afflictions for thy gain. Wherefore, thy soul shall be blessed ... and thy days shall be spent in the service of thy God." 

Hermana Garner

Monday, June 26, 2017

Hello, my name is Arizona, and I'm really, REALLY hot!

(video about the heat)

So this week the temperature has just been ridiculous. There were multiple times the gage in our car said it was 127 degrees. When it gets over 120 degrees we're supposed to be inside unless we have a set appointment that we're going to and studying or calling people, finding other things to do. We're not allowed to tract or proselyte for our safety.

Problem is, even being inside became a problem for us this week, because our AC broke AGAIN! Yep, that's right, hottest week ever and our AC decides to stop working. It was just upstairs in the bedrooms, the downstairs was fine. We ended up moving our mattresses into the upstairs landing because the air was coming there from downstairs and it was cool enough to actually sleep. So it's been sleep overs with the four spanish sisters all weekend haha. They're coming over today to fix it, we've been living like this for four days now.

We tried to fry an egg on the street. It didn't quite work.

This week was another roller-coaster week, with some days harder than others, but as always miracles sprinkled in between it all.  

Anyway, on to our investigators - Juan and Sandra are officially back in Mexico, it was hard to say goodbye to them but we're going to keep in contact. We love them so much! We had a few miracles lessons, and I've definitely felt myself starting to actually figure out how to do this whole teaching the gospel thing haha. 

We had an AMAZING lesson with Angelina, a new investigator, on Friday, she's so golden! She's a former who never got baptized, but is now really seeking for the truth, she said that she's 'avila,' which means hungry for knowledge. Pray for her, we think it's really likely she could be baptized this transfer!

thoughts this week ...

Ether 3:1 - when the Brother of Jared is trying to figure out how to get light into the barges, it says that he took stones that he had "molten out of a rock." He didn't expect the Lord to do all the work, and didn't just pick up random stones - he fashioned the stones and put effort into making them acceptable before the Lord, doing all he could until the point where there was nothing left but to rely on God's power. It's a great example.

Hermana Garner

Monday, June 19, 2017

I Love Being A Missionary!

I'm staying here, and Hna Hanson's staying with me! We're excited to get to have another transfer together and particularly in this area. Great things are ahead, that much we're sure of!

It was a bit of a roller-coaster week, but overall great! Monday night was hard, though - we came home and were getting things out of our car and we hear the opening song of Beauty and the Beast. Now, I know that musical well enough that I IMMEDIATELY knew it was the new version. It was playing on a big screen in the park across the street from our house. Hna Hanson and I had to literally run inside to stop ourselves from being tempted to just watch it. 

On Wednesday we had a funny moment where Hna Hanson got back into the car after backing me (it's a rule, anytime I back the car she has to be outside of it directing me) and acted like she was a hitch-hiker who knew nothing about the gospel. We ended up role-playing lesson one, and just as we neared the investigator's house we were going to I started laughing and was like, "What gets me is we're doing this for fun." Hna Hanson lost it laughing.

I've started focusing more on exercising in the morning, because in a recent blessing that I received I was promised that I would be protected spiritually and physically by the Lord as I do the things He asks me to do, and exercising was one of them. I've been a bit lax about it, because I've been so worried about hurting my IC, but now I'm trusting in that promise and trying to be more active. So far so good - we're doing T25 videos together as a house, its' intense, I do what I can hahaFriday night we were at dinner with Juan and Sandra (they move back to Mexico this Saturday 😥) and they called Hna Cedeno, so we were able to FaceTime with her!! It was awesome. She's doing well, she's lost a lot of weight and things are crazy there, but she finally got accepted to school here! Hopefully she'll get her Visa soon and can be back in the states in a couple months!

We didn't get in with very many of our investigators this week, but we did have a few miracles! I wrote in my journal on Friday night, "I think the thing I love most about being a missionary is that you get to feel the Spirit testify of the truthfulness of the gospel several times a day - almost constantly, really. And I'm feeling it more and more as time goes on." I've seen myself change more and more as I've sanctified myself on my mission and feel more the constant companionship of the Spirit. It's a wonderful thing.

Anyway, Saturday we knocked on a potential's door (we've never met them, the neighbor just told us they speak Spanish) and she immediately let us inside. Her name is Angelina, and it turns out that she's a former investigator from who knows how many years ago. Her son actually goes to mutual with some of his friends, and as soon as we told her what time the Spanish ward was, she said, "Oh, I'll go tomorrow!" ... Unfortunately she didn't, but she was really interested in going to the Tucson open house and was interested in us coming back and teaching her again, so we have a new investigator! She seems prepared, we'll see if she'll take the step to get baptized this time around.

Hna Hanson and I are growing so much closer together, and it's just fun to be her companion! She's a writer as well so we toss ideas around at times, and it's a good creative exercise to keep my mind from wondering too much when we're driving in the car. But we're also both very focused on the work and our investigators and dedicated to helping them in any way we can.I love being a

Hermana Garner

Monday, June 12, 2017

I'm So Grateful for the Gospel!

Our ward had a party for "Dia de los Pap​ 
 ás" on Saturday, but they made a play on words and made it "Dia de Papas" which means "potatoes," so they had all these Mr. Potato Head decorations, played Hot Potato, had a Baked Potato bar, it was really fun :)
So even though this was a short week for emailing, I feel like there's SO much to share! We've received so many referrals and seen so many amazing miracles in the past few days, and I feel incredibly blessed! Transfers are coming up next week and I'm really hoping I don't leave the ward, I want to stay here because I feel like the work is just starting to pick up!

Wednesday and Thursday were rough, though, because our AC broke. Wednesday night we came home and it was 85 degrees in the house, so we tried turning it down and nothing happened. We called the housing coordinators the next day, but they couldn't get anyone in to fix it until Friday morning. So we blasted fans throughout the whole house as it slowly got hotter and hotter. I barely slept at all on Thursday night, no AC in Arizona is no fun! Haha we're spoiled, but were very, very grateful when things were fixed!

Friday night, we had a lesson with Juan and Sandra. We'd been planning to watch the Restoration video with them, but we showed up and The Testaments was on the TV cued up and ready to go. They explained that they couldn't find the one we'd been planning on (the members they're living with had the case, but the DVD wasn't in it). I felt strongly that that wasn't a coincidence, and that this was the movie we were supposed to watch. I felt the spirit witness to me yet again the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon as we watched it, and when we reached the end of the video Sandra was crying for about five minutes. She's still holding herself back from accepting that all of this is true to a certain extent, but we know the Spirit is working with her and witnessing to her, so we're just trying to be patient. But they go back to Mexico next week, so we're just trying to strengthen them so they'll continue investigating when they get there. I'm pretty confident they will, we're going to write them letters as well.

Yesterday we saw HUGE miracles in sacrament! One of our investigators, who's wife and kids are members, came to church for the first time this transfer! He didn't stay all three hours, but it's a start! He's also keeping his commitments to read, we need to follow up a bit more on his prayers. But he supports his kids and helps teach them about how to gain a testimony ... he just needs to apply it in his own life!

Anyway, we also had a number of less actives who've never come show up, which was super exciting! Then, Hnas Showalter and Shaffer came up to us and were like, "Are you teaching someone named Ana?" and we were like, "Well, we have a referral for an Ana, haven't actually had a lesson with her yet ..." They pointed out a woman sitting towards the front of the chapel and said that she said she was meeting with the missionaries. We hurried over, and it wasn't the Ana that was a referral, but it was a former investigator that Hna Hanson and I didn't even know about who just showed up of her own accord with her two little girls and told us she wants to meet with us again! We were incredibly surprised, but are excited to get in with her!

I've also just had my testimony grow so much this week. I've felt the Lord closer to me than ever before and His love and support in every moment, especially the hard moments. I'm so grateful for the gospel!!

I've learned so much during my scripture study this week! I'm so grateful for the scriptures!!

D&C 84:109-110 is about how every member has a role and a calling and none is more important than another, I was touched by the way it is stated: "Therefore, let every man stand in his own office, and labor in his own calling." Sometimes we try to labor in others' callings (something I've seen a LOT on the mission) but as we trust in revelation and the organization of the Lord's church we'll be confident in the ability of our leaders and those who hold other positions to fulfill their callings, and that if they don't the Lord will make up for it.

I was also struck by D&C 18:5 - "Wherefore, if you shall build up my church, upon the foundation of my gospel and my rock, the gates of hell shall not prevail against you." Contrast that with Mormon 2:4, where Mormon talks about how the Nephites used all of their strength to try to fortify their city but the Lamanites still overcame them. Where are we drawing our strength from? Where are we building our foundation? If the answer is not in the gospel and in Christ, we will inevitably fall.

I also started reading the Book of Mormon again from the beginning. This week I was so incredibly struck by Nephi's experience with leaving Jerusalem. He mentions that when he prayed to the Lord, that the Lord softened his heart, which communicates that he felt resistance to follow his father. And it makes sense - imagine what a hard, hard thing that must have been! But rather than complaining and trying to logically explain it all, he looked to the found of all knowledge and received his own testimony of the Lord's will for their family and was ever faithful from that day forward. I love the scriptures! What are you all learning in your scripture study?

Hermana Garner