Monday, September 5, 2016

Missionary Work and the Atonement

"The field is white all ready to harvest..." A picture we found in Goodwill
Hello, Hello!

So sorry, this email will be short. Sister Miller and I are emailing today at the church (the libraries are closed for Labor Day, so normally we would be emailing on Tuesday) we wont be able to email tomorrow though. We have a big meeting up in Charleston with President Salisbury and the other mission leaders. It is basically a day long meeting. We have to wake up at 4:30 so that we can get up there in time for the meeting to start at 9:30. WOW! We have so many things to do... I don't think I have ever been so stressed out on my mission! It's good stress, but it has still been tough. I have been thinking a lot about how it's the toughest things that make us grow the most. But how do we get through the toughest things?
I have been pondering a lot of this talk. If you are a missionary I know you have heard this talk. It's by Elder Holland and it is amazing. I have been trying to put it in context of my own struggles and trying to apply it to me specifically.  I would encourage all of you to try to apply it to your own lives as well. ENJOY :)

"Anyone who does any kind of missionary work will have occasion to ask, Why is this so hard? Why doesn’t it go better? Why can’t our success be more rapid? Why aren’t there more people joining the Church? [Or in my case, why am I so stressed? Why do I feel unqualified for this task? Why is Satan working so hard to bring me down?] It is the truth. We believe in angels. We trust in miracles. Why don’t people just flock to the font? Why isn’t the only risk in missionary work that of pneumonia from being soaking wet all day and all night in the baptismal font?

You will have occasion to ask those questions. I have thought about this a great deal. I offer this as my personal feeling. I am convinced that missionary work is not easy because salvation is not a cheap experience. Salvation never was easy. We are The Church of Jesus Christ, this is the truth, and He is our Great Eternal Head. How could we believe it would be easy for us when it was never, ever easy for Him? It seems to me that missionaries and mission leaders have to spend at least a few moments in Gethsemane. Missionaries and mission leaders have to take at least a step or two toward the summit of Calvary.

Now, please don’t misunderstand. I’m not talking about anything anywhere near what Christ experienced. That would be presumptuous and sacrilegious. But I believe that missionaries and investigators, to come to the truth, to come to salvation, to know something of this price that has been paid, will have to pay a token of that same price.

For that reason I don’t believe missionary work has ever been easy, nor that conversion is, nor that retention is, nor that continued faithfulness is. I believe it is supposed to require some effort, something from the depths of our soul.

If He could come forward in the night, kneel down, fall on His face, bleed from every pore, and cry, “Abba, Father (Papa), if this cup can pass, let it pass,” then little wonder that salvation is not a whimsical or easy thing for us. If you wonder if there isn’t an easier way, you should remember you are not the first one to ask that. Someone a lot greater and a lot grander asked a long time ago if there wasn’t an easier way.

The Atonement will carry the missionaries perhaps even more importantly than it will carry the investigators. When you struggle, when you are rejected, when you are spit upon and cast out and made a hiss and a byword, you are standing with the best life this world has ever known, the only pure and perfect life ever lived. You have reason to stand tall and be grateful that the Living Son of the Living God knows all about your sorrows and afflictions."
I know that Christ knows exactly what we feel because he suffered for e v e r y  s i n g l e  o n e  o f  u s. Because of what he did for us, he can lift us up. Even if we hit rock bottom, Christ is the rock. I know that is true, and I know that he can help each one of us in any trial we face. Jesus Christ is our Redeemer, He is the Savior of the world, and he loves YOU! He can and will help us. And when we labor in His service, it will be hard, but it will be worth every tear, every trail, every hardship. I know that this is true.

I love y'all so much!!

~Sister Kayla Marie Willis

:) send me mail! 
1389 Dow St. #B
Christiansburg, VA 24073

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