One thing that I have been studying and thinking about a lot lately is the Sacrament. I am trying to allow myself to more fully prepare for the Sacrament and take advantage of the holy ordinance that it is. When you think about it, you can look up at the stars and see the amazing beauty that is up there. It is pretty breathtaking, and is one of my most favorite things to do, especially here in Oregon because we don't get to see the stars too often with the cloudiness! But then picture the stars, and think about the power that it was all created by. The Priesthood! We are so blessed because that same Priesthood has been restored to the Earth and we have the opportunity each week to participate in an ordinance in which that Priesthood is present. Each week we get to access the powers of Godliness! It truly is an amazing thought. I am so grateful for the Sacrament. I'm still trying to fully understand how I can prepare more fully for it, and allow it to have the effect on me that it should, but it is something I'm working on. I have something that I want you to watch. It's on the Gospel Library. Go to "Leadership" then "Sabbath Day Observance - October 2015" and watch that training broadcast. I had some free time the other day and watched it. It was so so so so good.
After church, we had a ward missionary correlation meeting. It was for the purpose of discussing our big event that will take place here in July. We are throwing a big open house for the community where we will have food and games, but also do like a church tour at the same time. We are pretty excited about it. I'm pretty sure I won't be here at that point, but I'm excited for what it's going to do for the ward and the community. After our meeting, we sort of had a mini meeting with Brother Graham, I guess it wasn't really a meeting, but we talked with him for a while and just sat and talked about the gospel and stuff. It was awesome!
This morning during part of my studies I read Matthew 4. This is where Christ is fasting or 40 days and nights. I'm super grateful for the Joseph Smith Translation. Because at the beginning of the chapter it talks about Christ going to the wilderness to be "tempted by the devil." Bruce R McConkie said that "righteous men don't seek out temptation". Which is so true! Christ didn't go to the desert to seek out temptation and to try to be tempted by the devil. He went out there to commune with God. And after 40 days of fasting, I'm sure he was super exhausted, hungry, and most vulnerable. That is when he was tempted by the adversary. Those are the times when the adversary tries and tempts us. I have seen that on my mission! That's when he works really hard because that's when we are more likely to succumb to his temptation. But as always, we can learn from the Savior. Each time He was tempted, He shot it down. He gave it no thought. He stood true to who He was and to what His Father wanted Him to do. That's how we need to be when temptations come! Just move forward in obedience! The past couple of days have given me some really good insight into the reality of gaining a personal relationship with Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father, and what I personally need to do to allow that to take place.
This picture is from an exchange with Elder Hall: he's the one who knows the Kimzeys. He's from Washington, Utah (St George).