Sunday, January 11, 2015

Increase of Happiness and Spirit

Good Day to you my loved ones!!! I DO love you all! You are all fantastic. I am grateful for the part you have all played in my life thus far and hope you continue to be a part of it. You are an inspiration. Remember That!
  It has been a good week! 6 weeks have come and gone once again! A new transfer has begun. Elder Nathan and I are both staying in Normanhurst! We are excited about it! Glad to be here and happy to improve it! This last p-day we got together and hit some golf balls at the Thornleigh golf center! It is right by a busy road so they have these huge nets, pretty cool. One of the zone leaders came with a Tongan Elder he lives with. So we had a fun little activity. Driving is weird... it is stress relieving because you hit something but also aggravating because I cannot hit the ball. haha. I am getting better though! Getting better. We had the last district meeting of the transfer while on exchanges so we took a big group photo, turns out only 1 of us left. Had a fun district lunch afterwards at Westfield: Hornsby. Later that day on exchanges we had to take some photos. Almost a year ago Elder Watts and I were regular missionaries, junior companions in fact, on exchanges in Taree. We took a photo then at a scenic place, so we  had to recreate the Photo, now as a District and Zone leader, in a scenic place here! haha. SO I included a phot of us at a scenic place. I will have to send both the old and new pictures next week.. ha. funny! well... on to the Good stuff!
   I was pondering on what I could write to you this week about and share as my core experience with God. I was thinking and thinking when Elder Nathan was recapping what we did this week I realized there was such an increase of Spirit felt and Happiness in all that we did! Upon thinking about it for a moment I realized it came from two changes in attitude and behavior which hopefully will change into a change in Nature! The first: An intentional increase in diligence and work. We realized we had been slack in a few areas and determined to become better than we were. We worked and did more than we had for a few weeks. As a result we talked to many more people and were again thinking about how we can do even better. We were happier, felt more joy in our days, and felt more meaning and purpose to all we were doing. The second: Relying on the Savior and His Atonement! Doing so really enabled us to change and make ground on our 40 Day fasts, our process of purification. Changing our will to match his and praying for the strength to do so. I have done this often. The key thing is as Moroni says, to have "a sincere heart and real intent," and I would like to add faith! If we have a sincere heart and really intended to follow the promptings we receive (and accept the way out the Lord gives in the face of temptation) we must have faith. Believing that we will receive an answer and really will have the chance to get away from the wickedness that will inevitably face us. I can't think of a better way to describe how to have faith than a sincere heart and real intent. That has been my lesson learned this week. By Working, increasing our diligence, and relying on the Savior and his Atonement we received a great uplift in Spirit and Joy. A lesson I am grateful to have learned.
    Teaching as Jesus taught. I have been trying to be happier when I teach. I noticed this week when we were watching "The District" videos for 12-week study that I began to feel the "Missionary-buzz" (as I call it) again! It was fun. I remembered the zeal and excitement I had coming out on my mission. I realized what we are and what we do: Represent Christ and re-present  Christ in our Areas. I noticed the missionaries that had the successful and spirit filled lessons had all been happy when teaching, still respecting and maintaining the high level of the spirit in attendance. I realized that is how Christ likely did and would teach. Happily. That is one way I have been trying to improve my teaching this week.
  One good thing I will do for Elder Nathan this week... I keep getting funny ideas from Elder Guthrie. He would make funny jokes about silly things we "was going to do" for his companion, Like sing him a lullaby before 10:30. I don't plan on doing that but I will do something good for him this week. I am sure I will have many opportunities to serve him through out he week, make him a lunch, make his bed, etc. However, I think the BEST thing I could do for him would be to change myself and be a better example to him. A better example of missionary work, and a better example of a consecrated and sanctified Missionary & Leader.
 I love you all! So much. HEAPS even! You are an inspiration! Remember that.   
        Elder Ford

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