Friday, April 22, 2016

Teaching by the Spirit - From Alli March 2016

Teaching by the spirit is one of the most important yet most challenging things to do as a missionary. I have found that it all begins with our own personal obedience and consecration. The more humble you are and the more dedicated you are to your responsibility, the greater the opportunity you allow for the Spirit to enter into your heart and the hearts of your investigators. I have found that absolutely nothing I say or could say, nothing I have done or could do will be able to change or inspire anyone's life. We have been called to represent the Savior, Jesus Christ. It is not about us. It is about allowing His words, His love, and His spirit to touch the lives of those we teach. In order to allow this to happen, we must be living according to His teachings. We must be following in His footsteps and relying on Him to make up for our weaknesses. I have had countless experiences of being in a lesson and not knowing what to say at all. I remember thinking so many times, "How can we help this person? How will they ever understand? What should we say? What invitation should we leave with them?" and being stressed because I didn't have an answer. But as I recognized that I was truly not capable of doing anything and that I needed divine help, was I then only able to have my mouth literally be filled with words that were exactly what that specific person needed to hear. Another thing I have learned about teaching by the Spirit is to ACTIVELY listen to its promptings. It takes physical concentration and effort but the more we act, the more often those promptings come. One specific example was with an investigator that I love so dearly! Still to this day she isn't baptized but we had very powerful spiritual moments together. She was taught by some Elders about a year before we happened to end up at her home by accident. She invited us in and before we knew it, we were seeing her and her family every week. One lesson she opened up to us and told us that she really wanted to know that the church was true but every time she prayed, she would have a dark feeling, get really confused, and get a headache. I remember my companion and I pausing as she told us that for a moment...then I felt the strongest impression to promise her that if she prayed that night, that she wouldn't have those feelings, and that she would find the answer she is searching for. Those words were not mine....I don't think I would be able to promise such a blessing without the influence of the Holy Ghost. As we closed that lesson, Sister Sambe (the investigator) got really emotional and thanked us for bringing the Spirit into her home. She continued to doubt but she later told me that she knew the church was true. that the priesthood had been restored through Joseph Smith but she still needed time to make the final transition and be baptized. From that moment on, I felt a greater connection with the Sambe family and continue to keep in touch even though I have been transferred. I know that she isn't a member of the church, but I am grateful that through the Holy Ghost, we could help her to feel its presence in her life and to help her to be able to build a relationship with our Heavenly Father through prayer.I am grateful for the gift of the Holy Ghost and I know that it is the only way that I have found any success as a missionary. I am grateful for the Sacrament that we partake of each week that enables us to be worthy to have this gift. Cherish the sacrament, be obedient, be consecrated, be humble, and you will be able to perform miracles for the Lord through the power of the Holy Ghost. 

much love,
Sister Bingham

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