Monday, December 30, 2013

December 2, 2013

This week was Thanksgiving, which means around here in Ohio it turns into annual, be too busy season. 

 This week was a little bit sparse in setting up appointments, because apparently if you have family coming into town Thursday for Thanksgiving, or you are leaving the day after thanksgiving that suddenly means you can't meet with missionaries for the entire week. It is actually quite puzzling that people can't find an hour in an entire week to discuss the Being who gave us everything we have, and continues to grant us the breath of life from day to day.

 In fact with the onrushing tidal wave of holiday business moving towards us like a screaming mountain of crazy it has caused me to seriously reflect on the purpose of this life and why we are, and more importantly what we are doing to fulfill this purpose.

 A purpose gives something meaning a purpose is the reason something exists, for example the purpose of a knife is to cut, the purpose of a missionary is to "invite others to come unto Christ by helping them receive the restored Gospel through faith in the Jesus Christ and His Atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end". the purpose of a salad shooter is too dice salads. If something is no longer fulfilling it's purpose than it doesn't have a reason for existing, if a knife doesn't cut we throw it away, if a missionary doesn't fulfill his purpose he should get sent home, if a salad shooter doesn't slice salad we spend 30 years trying to fight with customer support services to get a new one since it is still under warranty.

 In the same way, we that have accepted the Gospel of Jesus Christ into our hearts understand that we too have a purpose in the this life which is to become closer and closer to our Saviour and Our Loving Father in Heaven through changing ourselves to become like them by drawing on the power of the Atonement. Do we ever stop to think if what we are doing is helping us carry out our purpose in life. There are two people we are working with that really illustrate what happens when we don't seek to carry out our purpose. One Brother is currently living alone, he has recently overcome a second bout of cancer, and is divorced with one daughter and grandson who he hardly ever sees, despite working with this brother for three months he still has had difficulty giving up things in his life that are preventing him from coming back to Christ and coming to church, this brother continues to drift from day to day without doing much in his life, and just existing really. Then there is another sister we are working with who has a beautiful family and two wonderful little girls that is always on the go. Her daughters are well on their way to becoming olympic swimmers, she volunteers at the YMCA and works as a part time teacher, and a million other things. This sister is constantly on the go and constantly moving, but she too has trouble making it to church because of all she is involved in. She is constantly moving but often laterally. Both of these individuals are wonderful beloved children of God that have incredible potential but neither of them are moving forward in life because they aren't helping fulfill their purpose. At the last day when all things that we have done are brought forth and we give a final accounting of what we did with this life what will be able to say we did? Will we be able to say we have carried out our purpose? 

Luckily a knife that doesn't cut can be sharpened, and missionary that doesn't work can repent, and a salad shooter that doesn't slice can be replaced under warranty that will break down in the exact same amount of time as that last one.

That is the good news of this holiday season, is that because 2000 years ago a young babe was born in a stable, we can put behind us our past mistakes and our missed opportunities and become a sharpened knife, a repentant missionary, even the miracle of a fixed salad shooter. That is the miracle of the Atonement and the meaning of this holiday season that is the purpose of Christmas to turn us to Christ and help us understand again what our purpose is.

I know that Jesus Christ was born 2000 years ago in a lowly stable, that he descended from celestial worlds on high to ransom mankind, but of even greater worth I know that his life did not end 33 years after his birth but that he still lives today that he broke the bands of death and hell and through him and only on his name can we find our purpose, salvation, and happiness every other avenue will falter in the end will not make up the difference at the final accounting, but he already paid the price if we will just accept his offer. 

Introducing Preparing for a mission:
We are adding a new section to the Elder Poe report for those who will soon be embarking on a full time mission called Preparing for a mission. Today we would like to focus on the first question in preparing to serve a mission, which is. Should I serve a mission. If you can respond yes to the following two questions then you should definitely serve a mission.
1. Are you a young man between the ages of 18-27, who holds the priesthood?
2. Are you currently worthy, or willing to repent and become worthy to serve a mission? 
If you can answer yes to both those questions then you should serve a mission. The prophet has commanded you to, and when you entered the waters of baptism you covenanted to follow the commandments of God, that is one of them. 

The Report of Elder Hunter Poe

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