Yes. This last week there was a Bagyo, which means typhoon. It wasn’t super terrible here. We just got a lot of rain. For a whole week straight. There were two nights were I didn’t get a whole lot of sleep because of the loudness of the rain and because the thunder sounded like it was going off right outside out door so… ya… that was fun. We didn’t really get flooding here, Manilla got the worst of it. People keep saying that we are supposed to start another Bagyo today. And everyone keeps saying that we will be getting rain almost everyday until December… I don’t mind the rain so much, it’s the being wet all the time that wears on me. But it’s all good. I am super happy to be here.
Training seems to be going well. Sis Feinga is adjusting really well. And she is super awesome. She is trying to OYM on her own and she is always involved in the lessons. Even if its just a line or two or extending commitments. I really love her! I think I already said this, but she is from Tonga. She has long beautiful curly hair. She is really funny. Kinda quiet, but just AWESOME!!!
So this week I’m going to talk about faith. Our mission president asked us to read the Book of Mormon with a focus on faith. I have hundreds of scriptures about faith written down in my study notebook. And then he asked that we write a one page paper on faith and I am going to share my "paper" with you.
When I started writing this summary on faith some questions came to my mind. 1) What is Faith? 2) How do we obtain Faith? 3) Once we have faith what do we need to do to keep it? 4) Why is it important that we have faith?
1) What is Faith? Faith is hope. You cannot have faith without hope or hope without faith. The two go hand in hand. Faith is hoping for things we can’t see. It is having a hope that there is a Savior of the world who atoned for our sins, pains, and weaknesses.
2) How do we obtain faith? In Alma 37:27 it say all we need is a desire to believe, and that’s a good starting point. A desire to know is essential but then we have to do something. We need to act on the smallest particle of faith and then we will receive that witness. We will receive faith.
3) Once we have faith, what do we need to do to keep it? Rarely is word faith used on its’ own in the Book of Mormon. It is usually accompanied with words such as repentance, prayer, fasting, believing, doing the will of the Lord, Etc… To maintain and grow out faith we have to do something! We all know that faith without works is dead. Meaning if we don’t act in some way then it is not true faith. I think of faith like a muscle. Use it or lose it. People with moderate amounts of muscle generally work out hard everyday to keep them strong. But as soon as they stop the muscles start to atrophy. Healthy people usually have a decent amount of muscle, so it is with faith, the more we work it, the more we use it, the more it will grow and strengthen, allowing us to become spiritually strong.
4) Why is it important that we have faith? I think that the biggest reason that we need faith is because the Lord has said that he works miracles among the children of men, "according to their faith." So miracles can mean different things to different people. Here in the mission we consider it a miracle sometimes to get people to come to church. And ever baptism is definitely a miraculous event orchestrated by God. For people who are not missionaries, miracles might be as simple as passing that exam that you have studied weeks for and are dreading and you are relying on the Lord with all you have. Some might consider it a miracle to wake up every morning, or when you are holding a new born baby in your arms. The list of miracles goes on and on, but none would happen without faith. I know that without faith, one very young man could not have been an instrument for the Lord in bringing about the greatest Miracle in this dispensation, the restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the translation of the Book of Mormon.
Faith is not a perfect knowledge. If we has a perfect knowledge there would be no more need fore faith. In Ether 3:19 after the Brother of Jared saw Jesus Christ it says, "He had faith no longer, he knew, nothing doubting." Christ is sometimes referred to as the author and finisher of our faith. Meaning that only through Christ can we obtain faith and only through Him can we overcome our need for faith. So I guess my really short definition of faith is, "A hope and love for Jesus Christ and leads us to do acts that bring us closer to him and will sustain us until that time when he will show himself unto us and we will know, nothing doubting, that he is the Christ, Our Savior, and The Redeemer of all mankind."
This has been a really great assignment for me, I love reading the Book of Mormon but it meant so much more to me when I was searching and pondering the meaning of specific verses. I would like to encourage all of you to read the Book of Mormon with a specific topic in mind. It will help you better understand and appreciate the importance of that topic. I love you all, and I hope you are all doing well. Until next time.
Sister Mary Christina Cox
NOTICE: This email message is for the sole use of the intended recipient(s) and may contain confidential and privileged information. Any unauthorized review, use, disclosure or distribution is prohibited. If you are not the intended recipient, please contact the sender by reply email and destroy all copies of the original message.