This week was an amazing week, in the words of Oliver Cowdery "these were days never to be forgotten" (Pearl of Great Price pg 58) This week we had zone conference with our mission president which is always a revelatory experience but was followed up two days later by two sessions of stake conference, wherein we not only got to hear our wonderful, spiritual giant of a man, President James Kirk (yes that is probably a significant part of his awesomeness) but also Elder Walter C. Selden of the 70, as well as our mission president, and the temple president for the Columbus Temple District. It was amazing and inspiring to see them discuss and educate us on what the work of salvation means, and what it actually means to "Hasten the Work of Salvation" They talked about how the President Monson has exercised the Priesthood keys given to Joseph Smith by Moses in the Kirtland temple, to gather in scattered Israel and to bring all to a knowledge of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I would encourage everyone to check out the website hasteningthework.lds.org and to study the "Go About Doing Good" section in chapter 9 of Preach My Gospel.
In D&C 8:3 the Lord talks about how the spirit of revelation is that same spirit "by which Moses brought the children of Israel through the Red Sea on dry ground." Elder Betzold, my wonderful companion and I, saw this in action yesterday. So we had gotten home really late Saturday night due to stake conference and accidentally leaving the keys at the stake center, so we didn't get a chance to plan for Sunday. So we were going around shoveling people's driveway and doing things that we had needed to do throughout the week and then kinda petered out we had about an hour before dinner and were kinda out of things to do, and so my compnaions ask me what way he needs to turn at an intersection and I am all like "I don't know where are we going" and he responded with "I don't know that is a good question" then I had a street pop into my mind that we had intended to tract several days ago and it was as clear as day that I could feel the Spirit telling me "go to Inverness" so we head on over to Inverness and we get out and are just about to knock on the first door when we see somebody stuck in the snow. So we run over and help him out, he is a great guy by the name of Mike and we talk to Mike a little and find out that he already knows all about the Mormons because he has been out to Utah, and we ask him where in Utah he has been and he is all like "Ogden, Salt Lake City, Clearfield to take care of my aunt" and then I get real excited because I am from Clearfield and so I start asking him about his family and aunt and what not and he starts telling us about his life and how he has always tried to help people and what not and then we get the feeling to show him Mosiah 18 where Alma is talking to the people at the Waters of Mormon, about comforting those that stand in need of comfort and such and we ask him to read it aloud, and he does then we talk with him a little more and commit him to read all of Mosiah 18 and then Elder Betzold, who is an incredibly powerful missionary spiritually, says a prayer and he gets tears in his eyes and we ask if we can come back on March 1st and he says yes. So now we have another one of God's children that has a copy and has read and felt the power of the Book of Mormon and who has said we could return all because we heeded the prompting of the still small voice that told us to go somewhere. The strangest thing was that at the time it didn't really even feel like a spiritual prompting it just felt like an idea of something to do, a kind of vivid thought, the Lord is Hastening his Work, the missionaries I have met are raising the bar and lengthening their stride, the question becomes now will we begin to lengthen our stride as well, will we make sure to keep up with the Lord and the missionaries in bringing Salvation to God's children?
I know that Jesus is the Christ, I know that the Book of Mormon is the most powerful and correct of any book on earth and we were commanded by a prophet of God 26 years ago to flood the earth with the Book of Mormon and there are still those who have not heard it's message. If you do not yet have a testimony of the power of the Book of Mormon then get one now, read it by yourself and with your family every day before next conference, record how you feel each day, then at conference take a look at what has changed. The Book of Mormon will do more to change bad behavior and bring the Spirit of the Lord which is the Spirit of Miracles. More than just use the Book of Mormon in our own lives though we need to share it with the world, for those who are abreast of the troubling political and social issues that are plaguing the world I say that sharing the Gospel and especially the Book of Mormon is more than just an issue of Salvation, it is an issue of national security. I invite every person who reads this to acquire 10 copies of the Book of Mormon Pass Along Cards (preferably the Saviour in America and not Alien Jesus) and distribute them before the beginning of general conference. A real easy way to do this is when you meet someone new just ask them if they like to read, when they say yes, tell them about the greatest Book you have ever read, tell them they can get a FREE copy by calling the number on the back of the Pass Along Card, bear your testimony of it, and shazam you have planted a seed you have spread the Gospel it wasn't awkward it wasn't strange it was you telling people about your favorite book.
The time for speaking of missionary work is done, the time for conjecturing on how to help people is done. Now is the time of action, now is the time to spread the Gospel; the blessings of the Gospel only come as we go and do, Nephi didn't get the plates by waiting in the cave for an angel to bring them to him, he went and did. I know that as we seek to spread the Gospel in love we will see miracles happen our conversion to the Gospel will deepen and the blessings will be poured out such that there shall not be room to receive them. I so testify in the name of Jesus Christ my Lord Saviour and Redeemer. Amen.
The Report of Elder Poe