November 14, 2016


Arlington 6th Ward


Elder Brandon Harris

Another One Behind Us Helps Us to Improve the One Ahead

Hello! It's me. Yep. Monday already. This goes by really fast haha.

We had did more service this week, we did the privet patrol thingy

again where we basically took down mini forests. It is really fun to

see how an overcrowded and unhealthy forest turns into a beautiful,

open, healthy forest when the unhealthy trees are taken out. It is

such a cool thing to put forth all of that physical effort. It feels

good to do that every now and again!

This week we did some finding, of course, because we are missionaries

and we find people when the members don't and that happens quite

often. So, what we decided to do was go and chalk up a sidewalk in a

park. It was really fun and we generated some interest. While we were

drawing the Plan of Salvation we had a few people stop us and ask us

about what we are doing. That is one thing that I love about drawing

out things in chalk. :) That, and it stays there for a while haha!

Sam is still a rock star! We taught on Thursday and we took him to a

fireside that President Whitney put on. It was fantastic for both Sam

and me. President Whitney shared some stories that were great. He and

Sister Whitney love Christmas. Like, more than normal people haha.

They have Christmas lights up from September to late March haha. Their

Christmas tree is up year round and their phone, instead of ringing it

plays Christmas music. He shared a fantastic Christmas story form Alma

7. It is a great one if you haven't read it recently. ;)

I also had the opportunity to give a training in zone conference with

Elder Harris on revelation through prayer. It was a fantastic. I had

several missionaries come up to me after and say how it was an answer

to prayers. That was a testament to me that the things that President

Whitney asks us to train on and the things he feels impressed to say

are truly revelation and answers to prayers. I know that I benefitted

greatly from studying and preparing for the training. I loved feeling

the spirit work through me. I also have the opportunity to study and

give another training on having the faith to act upon the Atonement. I

love it. I love training missionaries! I learn so much and I am so

edified when I prepare to do that. I will attach my training for ya :)

Nikki is moving along. She is so full of love and hope. She has her

fair share of trials. We had the cool experience of expecting to teach

her about the Plan of Salvation when we went over on Saturday, but

instead when we got there, we ended up teaching about the Atonement

and prayer. Now, if you have served a mission or have taught a Sunday

school class on the atonement, you can pretty well know what that

experiences was like. But just in case it's been a little while, I

will share it anyway. Teaching about the Atonement is my absolute

favorite thing to do as a missionary. I love studying, I love teaching

other principles, I love meeting all kinds of people. But nothing is

quite like testifying of the love of God. I love looking into

someone's eyes that are laden with sorrow, hopelessness, fear and

guilt and watching that leave them when they feel the spirit teach

them that Christ took all of that upon them and, if we let him, he

will take it all away. When a person who has been filled with the

world lets the spirit take hold of their heart, in that moment their

eyes are filled with light. It is the most glorious thing that I can

think of. And I get to see it on a near daily basis. Such was the case

with Nikki. Her eyes filled with the realization that there is in fact

hope. There is in fact true love out there. There is in fact someone

who she can trust whole heartedly without needing to doubt.

You know, this week wasn't out of the ordinary. There wasn't much that

sticks out beyond that of the normal week. We did some service, we

taught some people about the gospel. We went to our Sunday meetings

and we received much inspiration. I love being on a mission. There is

nothing in this world that could have benefitted me more. It has

taught me about life, death, sorrow and joy. It has taught me a higher

sense of commitment and service. But you would think that throughout

all of that, I would be able to sense a change in myself. I will let

you know that I barely feel a thing. A missionary returned to this

ward last week and spoke in sacrament meeting. Everyone that saw him

remarked about how he changed. He noted that he didn't feel like he

was different. He knows that he is, but he can't see it. I know that

the same has been for me too. How does hat happen might you ask? The

answer is in Alma 37:6-7

        "Now ye may suppose that this is foolishness in me; but behold I say

unto you, that by small and simple things are great things brought to

pass; and small means in many instances doth confound the wise.

        And the Lord God doth work by means to bring about his great and

eternal purposes; and by very small means the Lord doth confound the

wise and bringeth about the salvation of many souls."

It has been by small things that I have changed. I don't recognize it

right now but that is because I have lived through the changes.

Nevertheless, I am different. I am a good different. Now, that Casey

you know is still there, just all if not most of the bad parts are

gone. I have been refined. I have been refined into a tool that the

Lord can now use to his purposes. I should say that I am still being

refined and molded but I have been changed.

"The changing power of the Atonement isn't immediate as we would like

it to be. It happens over time. Just as A river forms a canyon, the

Atonement will shape us in many different ways. It will wear down the

places in the rock where it is weak until they ultimately disappear

all together. Of course, it takes time for this to occur. A titanic

canyon cannot be formed overnight. So it is with the Atonement. We

must be patient as we allow it to shape us and submit to our fathers

will. When we do so, we will begin to see a marvelous change take

place within ourselves. As long as the river is flowing; as long as we

are actively and faithfully applying the Atonement in our lives, our

weaknesses will disappear."

As we are patient and have a deep obedience, obedience to everything

even down to the promptings of the spirit, we allow the Atonement to

work through us. I think that the best way to explain this is in the

Lord's own words so I will end with that in Ether 12:27:

"And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give

unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient

for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble

themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak

things become strong unto them."

Keep the Faith and Hurrah for Israel!

Love, your missionary son and brother, Elder Jefferies


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