Tuesday, September 23, 2014

week 56.
This past week has been hard, but incredible. 
This month as a Zone, we had a goal of 18 baptized, 18 confirmed (IN REXBURG I MIGHT ADD). That was 2 baptisms for each of the 9 companionships. I was in the leadership meeting when this HARD goal was put forth. In that meeting I had a clear spiritual impression that we could and were going to do it. At the beginning of the month we only had 11 baptismal dates and some were in October. 
If all goes according to plan this weekend, we will have 18 baptized and confirmed. Some INSANE miracles made that possible, and will help us do it. 
Heavenly Father is in this work. He IS preparing people to receive this true gospel. If I did not know that before, I do now. The Church is true. I feel so blessed to be a member of this great church led by God. It's SO true. He really is leading and guiding us. I wish I could put into words the great feelings of joy and gratitude that I feel right now. I'm almost crying.
Today, I want to talk about The Book of Mormon. (p.s. I know it's true)
I want to give examples from every book in The Book of Mormon where it testifies of Christ, with explanations. I invite the Spirit to testify to all of you the validity of these scriptures and this book. Note: I prayed about all these scriptures and sharing them. This may be the most important thing you ever read.

1 Nephi 17:50
 50 And I said unto them: If God had commanded me to do all things I could do them. If he should command me that I should say unto this water, be thou earth, it should be earth; and if I should say it, it would be done.

We believe in and testify of Christ's power. He can do all things.

2 Nephi 2:6-9
6 Wherefore, redemption cometh in and through the Holy Messiah; for he is full of grace and truth.

 7 Behold, he offereth himself a sacrifice for sin, to answer the ends of the law, unto all those who have a broken heart and a contrite spirit; and unto none else can the ends of the law be answered.

 8 Wherefore, how great the importance to make these things known unto the inhabitants of the earth, that they may know that there is no flesh that can dwell in the presence of God, save it be through the merits, and mercy, and grace of the Holy Messiah, who layeth down his life according to the flesh, and taketh it again by the power of the Spirit, that he may bring to pass the resurrection of the dead, being the first that should rise.

 9 Wherefore, he is the firstfruits unto God, inasmuch as he shall make intercession for all the children of men; and they that believe in him shall be saved.

Christ is the only source of redemption. He suffered and died for us. I am a missionary to share this knowledge.

2 Nephi 25:26

26 And we talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy of Christ, and we write according to our prophecies, that our children may know to what source they may look for a remission of their sins.

We do all these things for families and others to understand who Christ can be for all people.

2 Nephi 31:20-21

20 Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.

 21 And now, behold, my beloved brethren, this is the way; and there is none other way nor name given under heaven whereby man can be saved in the kingdom of God. And now, behold, this is the doctrine of Christ, and the only and true doctrine of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, which is one God, without end. Amen.

There is no other way to be eternally happy than Christ.

Jacob 4:7

 7 Nevertheless, the Lord God showeth us our weakness that we may know that it is by his grace, and his great condescensions unto the children of men, that we have power to do these things.

All things are possible with God's help and grace. Through him we overcome weakness.

Enos 1:26-27

26 And I saw that I must soon go down to my grave, having been wrought upon by the power of God that I must preach and prophesy unto this people, and declare the word according to the truth which is in Christ. And I have declared it in all my days, and have rejoiced in it above that of the world.

 27 And I soon go to the place of my rest, which is with my Redeemer; for I know that in him I shall rest. And I rejoice in the day when my mortal shall put on immortality, and shall stand before him; then shall I see his face with pleasure, and he will say unto me: Come unto me, ye blessed, there is a place prepared for you in the mansions of my Father. Amen.

If we serve Christ, we will return to live with Him and receive rest and be resurrected. 

Jarom 1:11

 11 Wherefore, the prophets, and the priests, and the teachers, did labor diligently, exhorting with all long-suffering the people to diligence; teaching the law of Moses, and the intent for which it was given; persuading them to look forward unto the Messiah, and believe in him to come as though he already was. And after this manner did they teach them.

We do everything to help others to have faith in Christ.

Omni 1:26

25 And it came to pass that I began to be old; and, having no seed, and knowing king Benjamin to be a just man before the Lord, wherefore, I shall deliver up these plates unto him, exhorting all men to come unto God, the Holy One of Israel, and believe in prophesying, and in revelations, and in the ministering of angels, and in the gift of speaking with tongues, and in the gift of interpreting languages, and in all things which are good; for there is nothing which is good save it comes from the Lord: and that which is evil cometh from the devil.

 26 And now, my beloved brethren, I would that ye should come unto Christ, who is the Holy One of Israel, and partake of his salvation, and the power of his redemption. Yea, come unto him, and offer your whole souls as an offering unto him, and continue in fasting and praying, and endure to the end; and as the Lord liveth ye will be saved.

All good things come from Christ. It pleads that we accept and follow Christ.

Words of Mormon 1:8

8 And my prayer to God is concerning my brethren, that they may once again come to the knowledge of God, yea, the redemption of Christ; that they may once again be a delightsome people.

It is through God that we become truly happy. We cannot really be happy without him.

Mosiah 3:17

17 And moreover, I say unto you, that there shall be no other name given nor any other way nor means whereby salvation can come unto the children of men, only in and through the name of Christ, the Lord Omnipotent.

Again, there is no other way than Christ to receive Salvation. none.

Mosiah 4:9

 9 Believe in God; believe that he is, and that he created all things, both in heaven and in earth; believe that he has all wisdom, and all power, both in heaven and in earth; believe that man doth not comprehend all the things which the Lord can comprehend.

God created everything for us. He knows all.

Mosiah 27:29

 29 My soul hath been redeemed from the gall of bitterness and bonds of iniquity. I was in the darkest abyss; but now I behold the marvelous light of God. My soul was racked with eternal torment; but I am snatched, and my soul is pained no more.

Through Christ we can be freed from sin and pains. 

Alma 19:12-13

2 And it came to pass that he arose, according to the words of Ammon; and as he arose, he stretched forth his hand unto the woman, and said: Blessed be the name of God, and blessed art thou.

 13 For as sure as thou livest, behold, I have seen my Redeemer; and he shall come forth, and be born of a woman, and he shall redeem all mankind who believe on his name. Now, when he had said these words, his heart was swollen within him, and he sunk again with joy; and the queen also sunk down, being overpowered by the Spirit.

A man sees bits of Christ life in a vision before Christ's life. That new knowledge gave him and his such great joy! The spirit caused he and his wife to be overcome by the Spirit and pass out. 

Alma 22:16

16 But Aaron said unto him: If thou desirest this thing, if thou wilt bow down before God, yea, if thou wilt repent of all thy sins, and will bow down before God, and call on his name in faith, believing that ye shall receive, then shalt thou receive the hope which thou desirest.

If we pray, we can come to understand the truth, if we ask in faith.

Alma 26:11-12

11 But Ammon said unto him: I do not boast in my own strength, nor in my own wisdom; but behold, my joy is full, yea, my heart is brim with joy, and I will rejoice in my God.

 12 Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever.

We are nothing alone, but with God we can do all things. 

Alma 56:47

47 Now they never had fought, yet they did not fear death; and they did think more upon the liberty of their fathers than they did upon their lives; yea, they had been taught by their mothers, that if they did not doubt, God would deliver them.

We need not fear. We must believe that God will help us overcome all challenges (in this case, a war. None of these young men died because of their faith.

Helamen 5:40-41

 40 And it came to pass that the Lamanites said unto him: What shall we do, that this cloud of darkness may be removed from overshadowing us?

 41 And Aminadab said unto them: You must repent, and cry unto the voice, even until ye shall have faith in Christ, who was taught unto you by Alma, and Amulek, and Zeezrom; and when ye shall do this, the cloud of darkness shall be removed from overshadowing you.

When we find ourselves in darkness (metaphorically), we can call on Christ and he will help us.

3 Nephi 11:3-17
This is when, after His resurrection, Christ comes to the Americas to visit his other sheep. (John 10:16)

  3 And it came to pass that while they were thus conversing one with another, they heard a voice as if it came out of heaven; and they cast their eyes round about, for they understood not the voice which they heard; and it was not a harsh voice, neither was it a loud voice; nevertheless, and notwithstanding it being a small voice it did pierce them that did hear to the center, insomuch that there was no part of their frame that it did not cause to quake; yea, it did pierce them to the very soul, and did cause their hearts to burn.

 4 And it came to pass that again they heard the voice, and they understood it not.

 5 And again the third time they did hear the voice, and did open their ears to hear it; and their eyes were towards the sound thereof; and they did look steadfastly towards heaven, from whence the sound came.

 6 And behold, the third time they did understand the voice which they heard; and it said unto them:

 7 Behold my Beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased, in whom I have glorified my name—hear ye him.

 8 And it came to pass, as they understood they cast their eyes up again towards heaven; and behold, they saw a Man descending out of heaven; and he was clothed in a white robe; and he came down and stood in the midst of them; and the eyes of the whole multitude were turned upon him, and they durst not open their mouths, even one to another, and wist not what it meant, for they thought it was an angel that had appeared unto them.

 9 And it came to pass that he stretched forth his hand and spake unto the people, saying:

 10 Behold, I am Jesus Christ, whom the prophets testified shall come into the world.

 11 And behold, I am the light and the life of the world; and I have drunk out of that bitter cup which the Father hath given me, and have glorified the Father in taking upon me the sins of the world, in the which I have suffered the will of the Father in all things from the beginning.

 12 And it came to pass that when Jesus had spoken these words the whole multitude fell to the earth; for they remembered that it had been prophesied among them that Christ should show himself unto them after his ascension into heaven.

 13 And it came to pass that the Lord spake unto them saying:

 14 Arise and come forth unto me, that ye may thrust your hands into my side, and also that ye may feel the prints of the nails in my hands and in my feet, that ye may know that I am the God of Israel, and the God of the whole earth, and have been slain for the sins of the world.

 15 And it came to pass that the multitude went forth, and thrust their hands into his side, and did feel the prints of the nails in his hands and in his feet; and this they did do, going forth one by one until they had all gone forth, and did see with their eyes and did feel with their hands, and did know of a surety and did bear record, that it was he, of whom it was written by the prophets, that should come.

 16 And when they had all gone forth and had witnessed for themselves, they did cry out with one accord, saying:

 17 Hosanna! Blessed be the name of the Most High God! And they did fall down at the feet of Jesus, and did worship him.

Christ Loves us all equally. It does not make sense that he would not show himself to all people after his resurrection. Read this passage again and pray about it. 

4 Nephi 1:15

15 And it came to pass that there was no contention in the land, because of the love of God which did dwell in the hearts of the people.

Through the love of God, all contentions can be resolved. 

Mormon 9:21

 21 Behold, I say unto you that whoso believeth in Christ, doubting nothing, whatsoever he shall ask the Father in the name of Christ it shall be granted him; and this promise is unto all, even unto the ends of the earth.

Through Christ,  prayer, and faith. We can receive all good things.

Ether 12:27
Christ talking through revelation

27 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.

Through Christ we can overcome weaknesses.

Moroni 9:25

25 My son, be faithful in Christ; and may not the things which I have written grieve thee, to weigh thee down unto death; but may Christ lift thee up, and may his sufferings and death, and the showing his body unto our fathers, and his mercy and long-suffering, and the hope of his glory and of eternal life, rest in your mind forever.

We can be healed through Christ of all worry and doubt. That doesn't necessarily take those problems away, but he can help us stay hopeful.

Moroni 10:4-5

4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not true; and if ye shall ask with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ, he will manifest the truth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.

 5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may know the truth of all things.

Through faith in Christ, we can know the truth of all things. Especially The Book of Mormon. I invite all, please, to get a copy, read it, pray about it, and it can and WILL strengthen you and your relationship with Christ. I promise this with all my heart. Please.

I know that he Book of Mormon is true. I have come to know this through diligent study of it for myself. I found out, FOR MYSELF, through prayer, that it is true. Please, just try it. Even if it goes against everything you've been taught, just try. What do you have to lose? You'll either be edified by it and find out it's true, or you'll have learned some interesting things about another religion.

Honoring God 
Elder Decker.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

!Hola Todos! (just imagine that the first exclamation mark is upside down.)
We have had a FANTASTIC week. It's been full of ups and downs, but that's every week, is it not?
We had transfers on Wednesday, so I've got a new comp! Woot! Elder Henrie is from down town Phoenix. He's 25 and a super cool guy.
We had some cool experiences this week. Our Zone decided that we'd put the work in God's hands, and expect miracles. We set some really high goals and we WILL achieve them. 
Someone who we've been teaching set a high goal as well. She set a goal to read the Book of Mormon in 2 months. In Spanish, that's 11 pages a day. When she set that goal, she seemed committed to it, but, she started to doubt; saying "11 pages is a lot." She ended up reading less than 11 pages in 2 weeks. 
My last season of Cross Country, I made a goal to run a 5K in less than 23 minutes. I ran a 23.13 in my last race. I did not achieve my goal only because I was injured right after that last race. 
Sometimes there are reasons why we do not complete our goals. I was physically unable to run for months after that injury. Other times there are excuses. Excuses are things like "I don't have time", "I'm too tired", "I don't feel like it today". Excuses are nothing but hold ups for your growth. THEY ARE FROM SATAN. He does not want us to accomplish anything in this life. DON'T YOU DARE DOUBT YOURSELF. Don't let any stupid, lazy excuse get in your way.
We are Children of God. We have an incredible potential. Excuses will stunt our growth and keep us from becoming who God wants us to become. 
Set goals, then accomplish them. Just do it. 
Philippians 4:13 
"I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me."

Christ healed a lame man at the Pool of Bethesda. He can help you with anything. Set a goal, do all you can, take Christ's hand, and have faith. This applies in every goal you may have.
Honoring God 
Elder Decker

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Week 54
We got transfer calls this past week. On Wednesday...Elder Taylor will be leaving to go to Driggs. I have been here in Rexburg for 6 months already and I'll for sure be here for another 6 weeks. That's intense! I'm pumped! Super excited! 7 1/2 months in the land of the Mormons! Working through referrals! 
Shout out- Sis Heath, I'm SO happy to have heard from you! It sounds like everything is going fantastic on the home front!
TAKE THAT LONGHORNS! True blue through and through. 
We had a baptism on Saturday! It was super miraculous! Her name is Kamree, she's 9, and she has a real, keen desire to follow Christ and return to live with God! It was awesome to see that desire in someone so young. 
I don't have much longer, but the gospel is true! ESPECIALLY when we have trials. Trials are when The Gospel of Jesus Christ can be most felt and appreciated. If you are in a trial, even if you don't feel like praying, Just Do It. As you pray in faith, Heavenly Father will bless you. 
Honoring God
Elder Decker

Friday, September 5, 2014

Week 53
It's all quiet on the western front. Here in eastern Idaho storm clouds have accompanied us almost daily as we do our best.
Health update- I'm still not feeling fantastic, but I've been able to work every day. WHAT A BLESSING!
We had a Zone Conference on Friday. It was incredible. The spirit was SO strong there. I learned so much!
I especially learned about how we can avoid stress: study (being prepared), and planning.
If we believe that Heavenly Father has a plan for all of us here on this earth and after, and he's perfect... that means that if we want to become more perfect, we need to plan. We need to make goals and plan how we are going to accomplish them. I encourage you all to pinpoint something that you want to improve, write it down, then make trackable goals to accomplish it. 
As we have a plan, God has more opportunities to direct us, because he sees that we're moving. A stationary car can't be moved by anyone, it's not moving by definition. Changing the direction of the tires will do nothing. When a car is moving, then the turn of the wheel will change it's course. When we are doing what we can to head down the correct road and making progress, Heavenly Father can guide us with a turn of the wheel when necessary. 
In order to get anywhere, you need to study a map, so you have the direction to get somewhere worth getting to. On the highway of life, we need to know where we're headed. It is for that reason that daily scripture study is so INCREDIBLY necessary. We need to review the map and judge our course so we can stay on our way to eternal life. 
Here's the evidence of what I've said, on a very small scale, that happened yesterday.
We wanted to put this study, plan, thing to a test. So, we planned in great detail for a lesson that we were to have later that day. We planned what we'd teach, what scriptures, who'd talk about what, everything. We could put all of this because we had studied over a long time. That lesson was one of the most powerful of my mission. Our goal was for her to understand the importance of the Book of Mormon and read it. Because of the spirit that was in the room as we taught with power and focus, knowing the plan, she committed to read the Book of Mormon in 2 months. She decided that action is what it takes to come to know the truth. She made a goal and made a measurable plan to get there. It's all about plans. It is ALL about action. 
The spirit was so strong. Everyone in the room felt it. She was almost crying because of the Spirit's presence. 
Make a plan.
Honoring God
Elder Decker