This week was pretty awesome. We taught 21 lessons which is pretty darn good for the area. The standard of excellence for the mission is 20 lessons a week. We will hopefully commit somebody to baptism tonight. We found out today that our zone is leading the mission in stats. Numbers are everything haha just kidding. We lost an investigator yesterday. She said she doesn't want us to come back, but she will come around eventually. When she doesn't have two slaves to come do service every week and doesn't have two guys for her to wine and cry to. We went to a fireside last night where Jim bean spoke. He was the guy in charge of securing and choosing the spot for the temple. He has met personally every prophet that was alive when he was. He does a lot of the legal work for the church properties. He remembers everything. It's crazy. Yesterday we visited the guy who takes care of his granddaughter because they weren't at church. She and her grandma were sick. Marley is the little girls name. She is the one who is special needs because her mom did heroine. She was sick and kept on touching Elder Smith. And then she asked if he was sick and he said not yet. Then she asked me if I was sick and I said I don't think so, but she didn't touch me. So brother rice (the grandpa) said "well we know who the Angels are looking out for. Did you notice she didn't touch Elder Garfield". It was super funny. Last pday we went to downtown Portland and went to voodoo donuts and what not. We went to the Scientology church and talked to them. We took their personality test and they told us all about how Scientology could help us. It was super funny. They basically have you take a personality test, alter the results to make you feel bad about yourself, and then tell you how Scientology can help your nonexistent problems. They tried to sell us their dianetics book haha. They were like "Scientology can help you be a better missionary". So that was basically my downtown experience hahaha.
Spiritual thought for the week
By elder holland
May I refer to a modern “last days” testimony? When Joseph Smith and his brother Hyrum started for Carthage to face what they knew would be an imminent martyrdom, Hyrum read these words to comfort the heart of his brother:
“Thou hast been faithful; wherefore … thou shalt be made strong, even unto the sitting down in the place which I have prepared in the mansions of my Father.
“And now I, Moroni, bid farewell … until we shall meet before the judgment-seat of Christ.”
A few short verses from the 12th chapter of Ether in the Book of Mormon. Before closing the book, Hyrum turned down the corner of the page from which he had read, marking it as part of the everlasting testimony for which these two brothers were about to die. I hold in my hand that book, the very copy from which Hyrum read, the same corner of the page turned down, still visible. Later, when actually incarcerated in the jail, Joseph the Prophet turned to the guards who held him captive and bore a powerful testimony of the divine authenticity of the Book of Mormon. Shortly thereafter pistol and ball would take the lives of these two testators.
As one of a thousand elements of my own testimony of the divinity of the Book of Mormon, I submit this as yet one more evidence of its truthfulness. In this their greatest--and last--hour of need, I ask you: would these men blaspheme before God by continuing to fix their lives, their honor, and their own search for eternal salvation on a book (and by implication a church and a ministry) they had
fictitiously created out of whole cloth?
Never mind that their wives are about to be widows and their children fatherless. Never mind that their little band of followers will yet be “houseless, friendless and homeless” and that their
children will leave footprints of blood across frozen rivers and an untamed prairie floor. Never mind that legions will die and other legions live declaring in the four quarters of this earth that they
know the Book of Mormon and the Church which espouses it to be true. Disregard all of that, and tell me whether in this hour of death these two men would enter the presence of their Eternal Judge quoting from and finding solace in a book which, if not the very word of God, would brand them as imposters and charlatans until the end of time? They would not do that! They were willing to die rather than deny the divine origin and the eternal truthfulness of the Book of Mormon.
For 179 years this book has been examined and attacked, denied and deconstructed, targeted and torn apart like perhaps no other book in modern religious history--perhaps like no other book in any
religious history. And still it stands. Failed theories about its origins have been born and parroted and have died--from Ethan Smith to Solomon Spaulding to deranged paranoid to cunning genius. None of
these frankly pathetic answers for this book has ever withstood examination because there is no other answer than the one Joseph gave as its young unlearned translator. In this I stand with my own great-grandfather, who said simply enough, “No wicked man could write such a book as this; and no good man would write it, unless it were true and he were commanded of God to do so.”
Make sure you anchor your faith in the divinity of the Book of Mormon. As you do that your testimony of every other aspect of the gospel will grow. Don't anchor your faith in church policy, church leaders, or friends/parents in the church. The only way to remain a faithful unwavering servant of the Lord is to gain a testimony for yourself of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon.