Monday, June 20, 2011

Mission Conference

This week was good. Slow but good. Dad you would be so proud I'm doing jujitzu(how do u spell it?) with all the Chinese people in the park during the week for morning exericise. It's so funny to go exericise in the morning and see all the chinese people working their chakra's and patting their legs and gathering their chi. It's great.

Ward is still good. The activity went well. Thank you so much for sending all that music mom and jenna it worked out perfectly. The relief society president told me to make sure to tell you thanks. Did I tell you our relief society president has purple hair? Ya its pretty cool. I'm being serious.

This week we had an amazing mission conference with Elder Gong and Elder Christensen from the first quorom of the seventy. It was so wonderful and I really felt a deep sense of gratitude and the spirit testify of the truthfulness of the things that we were talking about. I really enjoyed all of it so much. It's interesting because sister Harry and I had talked a couple of weeks back about things that really bring the spirit into a lesson and what gives us passion to teach. We agreed that the atonement and bearing pure testimony of Jesus Christ you can't go wrong. We talked about how he is the center of our message. He is the one that we are following and teach about. As missionaries we extend and invite others to come unto him. So, it was really cool when our 6 hour mission conference was all on the atonement of our Savior Jesus Christ. It was very personal and we got to ask them many deep questions and have the questions of our souls answered. I also learned that there is a reference to the atonement of Jesus Christ at least every other page in the book of mormon. That's a lot of Jesus talk right there. but then again, it is another testament of Jesus Christ.

We had lunch at the conference and had various tables set up. I sat on the table with my companion and a few of the other sisters, including Sister Nelson and Sister Gong and sister christensen. It ended up that Elder Gong came to sit by his wife which I happened to be sitting on his other side. So it was kind of cool because he naturally started up conversation with us missionaries. He asked me what makes New York a unique place to serve. Well, there are many things that make New York unique. You won't find another mission quite like it. But speaking to a general authority I didn't know quite what to say at first so I turned to the other sisters and let them speak their thoughts. We decided to relate it back to the diversity aspect of New York. I then related the experience I had back on the bus a while back where I met a girl from the middle east ( i think afganistan), Jewish, and she believed that Jesus was the Christ. You don't get that combination very often. Find one other place in the world you bump into those types of combinations. I don't remember totally what was talked about on that bus ride so maybe it was a bad example to bring up because then Elder Gong asked me what I asked her after I told her that. I don't remember. So it kind of ruined the point he was trying to make. But, i started in on asking him about the atonement. The atonement of Jesus Christ is the crucial part in the plan of salvation. Without it, we aren't really going anywhere. It is the power to heal us physically and spiritually. It is the power that bridges the gaps between our spiritual and physical death from God. The majority of mankind believes in a savior. All of Christianity believes in Jesus and that he died for us. But at the same time there are so many people that don't know how to apply that to their lives personally. Maybe to a small scale. We can't really comprehend it because it is an infinite atonement the utimate sacrifice. So, sometimes I feel its a little gray for people even though they understand that Jesus is the Christ. Right? So Elder Gong naturally told me that what I was here for. To teach people how to come and use the atonement of Jesus Christ in their lives through repentance. Then I asked him if we need to do everything we can before we can access the atonement of christ to bridge where we fall short. During one of my lessons I've heard the perspective that God lets us go through our own getsemani a little bit in order to become more like him so we can't just lay it all at his feet before we've started our problem. I wish you could talk with this guy. His whole countenance just reminds me of a Chinese Yogi Master with all this wisdom and his words always just ring such wisdom in the way he says it. He is so kind and very humble with all this wisdom he seems to have in his sleeves. He then asks me. " Do you breath sister lewis?" I say, "Do I breath?" just making sure I heard the question right. Yes. "Yes I breath...." He says. "How?" I'm kind of stumped for a minute. Trying to decide what answer he is looking for. Uh, with my lungs? He says, "Yes isn't every breath we take a gift from God? I think the atonement has a lot more to do with our way of being and existence than we think." Point being yes we do use the the atonement to bridge our gaps but it's a lot more on the side of mercy than it is on judgment. We use the atonement every day and it is the power by which we exist and are able to progress. I think I really don't think I explained that very well in an email but I really liked the conversation that we had. It was so cool! He is really nice and so was elder christensen.

Our other topic of conversation was how the quorums are set up. I always get so confused in D&C when they talk about it so it was just good to have it from someone that knew what was going on. So there are 8 quoroms right now. The first 2 quorums of the 70 are called as general authorities and are called to serve world wide. The first quorum of the 70 serves until the age of 70 and then the rest of the quorums serve usually for a period of around 5 years. Quorums 3-8 still have areas that they are assigned to.

Sister Gong had us make up these Psalms for part of the conference. It was really fun to get it all done. This was mine.

Praise y the Lord for he hath enlightened my mind with light.
And given me the strength and means to build his kingdom
The Lord he is omnipotent. My master and companion through the fight.
And I will always serve him as my Lord and Savior. For through him we find our ourselves.

One last part of the mission conference that I just absolutely loved was when a young sister missionary that I used to serve with got up and asked the question. I know that these things are true. I've grown up in the church. Yet sometimes as I'm teaching or I hear about the conversion of others I question my own conversion or my worth because I haven't ever had experiences like theirs. Yet I still know that they are true.

President Christensen explained that the stories of others conversions become part of our own as we teach them and as they share their experiences with us. Elder Carnohan then got up and shared a very powerful testimony of how the greatest miracle in the whole world is true conversion and that as some of us that have grown up in the church there is no greater blessing or miracle than to have the conversion of our parents. I really liked that. I know its true. I have been blessed with a home of the gospel. I 've seen its blessings. People can say it's not true but it is. And it works and it is evidence enough that it is true. You can deny the talk but you can't deny the results. Doesn't mean it is easy but it is definitely worth it.

Love you all,

Much amor, Hermana Lewis

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