May 4, 2015
Something that has been on my mind this week is where we are as families within the church and where the family is within the world standards.  In Preach My Gospel it says, "Happiness in family life is most likely to be achieved when founded upon the teachings of Jesus Christ and when parents make their family their highest priority. By divine design, fathers are to preside over their families in love and righteousness and are responsible to provide the necessities of life and protection for their families. Mothers are primarily responsible for the nurture of their children. In these sacred responsibilities, fathers and mothers are obligated to help one another as equal partners” (Ensign, Nov. 1995, 102). Together, parents are to teach their children the gospel of Jesus Christ and help them live it.  Satan has a mighty grasp on families today.  In 2 Timothy 3: 2-5 Paul describes apostasy and the perilous times of the last days as such: "For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, truce-breakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, high-minded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God.  Having a form of godliness, but denying, the power thereof, from such turn away." Now, is the Proclamation to the Family describing a perfect, ideal home?  Yes.  Are there any perfect families?  No.  That is why this is a doctrinal standard and it should be our goal.  Once upon a time there was a man named Lehi and one night he had a dream.  He saw families holding fast to a rod of iron walking towards a tree of life.  Then he looks around and sees individuals in a great and spacious building laughing, mocking, (insert 2 timothy 2:3-5 here, lol) and all sorts of awful things towards those holding fast to the rod. All those who held fast lived happily ever after and all the others did not.  I am sure those mocking, laughing, and pointing from the great and spacious building were loud.  But it is not always the loudest voice that is the correct voice.  Sometimes growth and strength is easier in theory instead of in practice.  But as we strive to reach our goals, as we try to #holdtotherodda, as we love our families and humble ourselves, Heavenly Father will bless us with more things than we can comprehend.

In Alma 5:27 it says, "Could ye say, if ye were called to die at this time, within yourselves, that ye have been sufficiently humble?"   Humility is recognizing gratefully your dependence on the Lord and acknowledgment that your talents and abilities are gifts from God.  In John, the Savior says, "I can of mine own self do nothing... I seek not mine own will, but the will of the father which hath sent me." This past week has been hard, hard in the sense that I needed to humble myself and try to understand the importance of God's greater plan and trust more fully in his way and in his timing.  I think it's ironic that my mission scripture is Proverbs 3:5-6, "Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths."  I should probably apply that more... whoops.  We all make mistakes.  This past week I have come to realize through humbling experiences that love is a blessing and curse.  A curse in the selfish sense that (insert one of the following: 1. when your recent convert is on her death bed after battling ever single type of cancer known to man.  2. when you see one of the worst possible accidents happen - no details included.  3. when you have to drop a family of non-progressing investigators.  4. your companion spills buckets of water on your  "I am turning 8 and being baptized" scriptures.  5. when your 14 year old investigator decides that worldly entertainment is more “pleasurable” than the magnificent and lasting happiness of the gospel) your heart literally breaks in to two when you see these loved ones struggle in any aspect of life. Imagine the worst high school break up and multiply it by at least a thousand and you might experience a piece of missionary life.  Loving people can lead to disappointment and sorrow but only because you care and are concerned, not because you stop loving them.  Why is love a blessing?  When you love someone they can experience a particle of the love God has for them and a tiny piece of their divine potential.  It is important that we humble ourselves so God can work through us to help our lost brothers and sisters find their way back to him.  Just like Ammon said in Alma:26 (my favorite Book of Mormon chapter) 11-12, "But Ammon said unto him: I do not boast in my own strength, nor in my own wisdom; but behold, my joy is full, yea, my heart is brim with joy, and I will rejoice in my God. Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things."  We can overcome Satan’s direct temptation, use of lies and deception, stirred contention, and mighty discouragement as we humble ourselves and recognize God's hand in all things.  We, as individuals and families, "are happiest when founded on the teachings of Jesus Christ."
And now a S/O to my wonderful mommy because Mother's Day is coming up and she just deserves a S/O.  In Alma 56:48 it says, "we do not doubt our mothers knew it."  This is talking about the 2000 stripling warriors.  As much as I would have loved to believe that my mom was wrong in all aspects of life (stupid teenager- good thing I am an adult now) I always knew that my mom knew best. My mom is the most humble, genuine, Christ-like, hardworking person I know.  She helps everyone around her and she loves EVERYONE. I want to be my mom when I grow up. I LOVE MY MOM. HAPPY M DAY. I can honestly say, "I, Sister Rodda, have been born of goodly parents."
Oh and there were also some awesome things this week that I didn't mention above so here they are:
1.  stake conference. rocked my socks off.
2.  SM, a potential investigator invited us over for dinner on mother's day. kinda cool,
3.  S, a referral, committed himself to come to church without us even asking
4.  M, had an awesome lesson with her and she is progressing.
current investigators; C, M, S, My, A, E
That's all for today folks. Love and miss you all.  See you on m day!!!!!

love sister rodda.

1 comment:

  1. Hey sister Rodda, I'm sitting here in the doctor's office getting choked up as I read your letter. I love that I can feel your testimony as I read your words. Ps, Olivia still prays for you everyday to "make lots of friends on your mission". Let's just say she means friends as people to teach. :) love you! -Melissa Harmon