I was so blessed this week to be able to watch General Conference! I had heard that conference is like the Superbowl for missionaries, and I can tell you that it isn't. It's BETTER! We got to watch every session on both Saturday and Sunday, and I learned so much from every single talk! The most important thing that the Spirit taught me, though, was a reaffirmation that Thomas S. Monson really is a prophet of God, and that the apostles are chosen men ordained of God. Their words are vital scripture for us today! They are our outlet to hear exactly what God wants us to hear, in language that we can understand in our day! I am so grateful that God loves us so much to give us this direction through prophets.
One of my favorite themes I noticed throughout conference was the theme of obedience. As a missionary, you have heaps and heaps of rules and you're told to be exactly obedient to all of them. As disciples of Christ, missionary or civilian, we have commandments to be obedient to as well. A lot of times I think people think of obedience as a chore, or submission, or a degrading thing that admits that we don't have power. But obedience to God's laws is not. As L. Tom Perry said in his talk on Sunday, obedience is not weakness; it is what qualifies us to receive the power of heaven. Being obedient is choosing to access the infinite wisdom and power of God. All the things he commands us to do are for our own good, will bring us blessings, and will help us come closer to Christ. As we obey our Heavenly Father, we become more like Him. We become qualified to receive the blessings and divine assistance that he yearns to give us. Jesus Christ, as in all things, is our prime exemplar of obedience. He didn't have to suffer in the garden. He didn't have to be nailed on the cross. He was not killed by His crucifiers; He chose to die for us. He had all power to deliver Himself, yet He chose to be obedient to His Father's commandments and complete the atonement. The atonement was made possible by the obedience of our Savior. And if the Savior has such need and such willingness to be obedient to His Father, how much more need have to to be obedient as well. Obedience is not weakness.
And that's my sermon for the week! ;) On another note, we gave our sweet Mercedes a copy of the Book of Mormon this week and she is excited to start reading! She shared an experience that she had while reading her Bible. She said she felt like God was talking to her through the scriptures and telling her that she should listen to the message we have to teach her! So cool! We love her so much, and we know Heavenly Father does too!
Big thanks to everyone who has written me letters and emails! I promise I will get back to all of you as soon as I can! I even bought stamps to send real letters home, but I stuck them in a Book of Mormon and forgot about them and I'm pretty sure I gave that Book to Mercedes. So I'll have to ask for them back soon.
I love you all! The church is true!!
xoxox Sister Larsen