Monday, April 8, 2013
General Conference, Riding Bikes, & Testimonies!
Elder Langford's Update: April 8, 2013
Hooooooooooo boy!!! Conference was fantastic right??!! When you're on a mission, I think naturally you just get so much more out of it, because you learn how to focus more, and you really know and understand more of what you're learning and trying to get out of it. This has been an extremely eventful week, and I don't know if I can account all of it (especially because my planner's at home :/) but I'll do my best!
I also had the opportunity of getting sick again for luckily just 2 days of the week! In those 2 days alone, I lost 8 pounds... but luckily after I was able to eat again, it came back real quick after some Smithfield's tasty barbecue ;) Mmmmm!! Dang I had so many things to say, but I don't have that planner... if you could see me right now, I paused typing and just face palmed myself... ahh!
We had an interesting exchange to Harker's Island. I was able to go, and as we were going to sleep, I asked the other Elder what his biggest fear was in the mission. He said that when he would go up to teach, or the moment to act and do missionary things such as contacting, or blessings, or any action, he'd always get this terrible anxiety thinking am I really ready? Am I worthy? Am I qualified to do this? We had a great talk about how we are qualified, and how fear is one of Satan's strongest weapons, and that faith, literally, is the opposite of fear, and if it is always applied, always takes it away. We had a revelatory experience on some of the details of understanding the practicality of faith in our lives and how to apply it, enough that we felt the prompting to get up and write it all down to further study later. It's been studies like this on topics that have really changed me in the mission field. I've come to see that there is knowing things, knowing truth, and then understanding the spirit of the truth, or conversion to it. If you ask someone, who read 4 to 6 novels on how to ride a bike, man I bet they'd be able to go into such detail on how the brakes work, how the shocks adjust to your bumps, and the spokes connect to all these different hinges, and the importance of your bike choice, and all those different specifics. You could also ask someone who's been riding a bike for a couple years, and think of the difference in the lesson and explanation in his demonstration on how to ride a bike. The first example is having a testimony, a firm knowledge that the gospel is true (that you can ride a bike). This is so key! If you don't believe you can ride a bike, you'll never be able to! The second example is conversion. You know that your testimony of the gospel is true, because you live it and apply it's principles daily in your life (you ride the bike ). Now, the more you ride the bike, the better you get! Just like on the mission when I first came out, I knew how to 'ride a bike'. Now, I know, and have been converted to ride a bike. I can ride without hands, and do all sorts of new things I never would've known if I hadn't tried them for myself. The Gospel works the same way. It is in the application of the knowledge that we have on the gospel, that we gain further understanding on it's principles. The difference between someone that knows how to ride a bike, and someone that rides it for a living, is a landslide. It's in the doing that we learn and understand! And as we understand, we find joy in our understanding, and as we find joy in our understanding, we want to find more knowledge and understand to find more joy in it, thus, Our eternal cycle of progression can be narrowed down to our desire for the application of our knowledge, to ever increase our joy. Pretty neat. I gotta say.