Shawnee is a one of a kind place let me tell you. I will definitely be coming back here someday to show yall around. It is an adventure every time you step out of your apartment. You meet some of the craziest, most loving people in the world here. Anyways, my mind has been focused on a scripture this week. Out here in Shawnee where the baptist population is RAMPANT...sometimes all you can do is work and have faith. There really is no secret to "success". There is no crazy approach that works with most people, it really is just being led by the Lord to those whom He has prepared and bearing down in pure testimony of the Savior and His gospel.
Being in Shawnee has taught me alot about Faith, Hope and Charity. I have come to love the simplicity of those 3 principles. In the scriptures it refers to those 3 principles as the "fountain of all righteousness". I think of a fountain flowing continually with no end. When we strive to master those principles in our lives, a fountain of righteousness flows unto us continually. The perfect "trifecta". Being hopeful is absolutely key in Gods eternal plan for us. I am so sick of hearing all the doubts people have about the Restored Gospel and about God's plan for us. If anything, just hope that it is all true. Take a look at your life and picture yourself without your house, your car, your money, your clothes, your entertainment, your phone (aka ALL CARNAL SECURITIES that we have been "lulled" into) etc...and what do you have? You, your knowledge, your testimony, your spirit and your family. I have often heard that death is the great equalizer and I love it because its so true. When all is said and done at the end of our lives, what will we have? In other words, what do we HOPE we will have?
We all know that death must come. But do we hope we will be able to live again because of what others refer to as the ressurrection of a Savior? Do we hope that He made that possible for us? Do we hope that we will be able to live with our families again someday eternally with God? Do we hope that all our guilt and sins and mistakes can be washed away and cleansed? Do we hope for happiness in such a stressful world? Do we hope that what others refer to as an "Atonement" can literally lift us above the weaknesses that we all have as human beings? My question is, why don't we have more hope for these things? When it comes to belief in a God, why are we not more willing to believe and take chances of faith? What do we have to lose? Why can't we put ourselves out on a limb, jump into the Saviors arms and at least hope that He will catch us? I am here to tell you that He will. He cannot fail you. He loves you unconditionally and your hope and your faith in Him will allow you to be ressurrected as He was. He did make it possible for your family to be together again. His Atonement is very real and will wash your sins away through faith on His name. You can overcome your weaknesses and be happy by keeping His commandments and living as He would. It will take sacrifice on our part, but in the end, we will all realize that it was only an eternal investment. Even if you can no more than desire to believe or hope, let it work in you until you can do something about that believe and experiement, and I promise He will not fail you. If we want to become the person we want to be, each day we must consistently be the person we want to become by being more Christ-like and throwing off all "ungodliness".
Here's a challenge for ALL of you. Take a piece of paper and write down ALL of the blessings that flow from the Gospel of Jesus Christ and His true Church. Think about the blessings of prophets, apostles, priesthood, temples, eternal life, eternal families, eternal happiness, eternal peace, patriarchal blessings, Another Witness of Jesus Christ (whom everyone claims to love so dearly, yet rejects another witness of Him) The Book of Mormon, tithing, the law of Chastity, the sacrament etc....Write all of those down and more and then ask yourself these questions....
1. Do I hope all these things are true?
2. What can I do to obtain these blessings?
3. What am I willing to give up in a world of mortality, to lay up eternal investments like these in a world of eternity?
Then do something about it... And ALWAYS remember. Don't be so easily distracted. If doubt gets in your way, get it out and hope. Pray for the strength. I promise God will send help.
I love you all. This Christmas season, remember Him.
Elder Dallin Cutler
we have had gnarly ice torms and trees just fall down. this was outside our apartment saturday night. we went running.
at our christmas conference. the bretheren in the Lord