Email August 18, 2014 – Elder Kenneth Wm. Burton
Bunch of Burtons
We spent a few hours on Saturday chopping wood as a service for some members in our Ward. Its made it so the last few days both Elder Durrant's and my hands have been super sore. A good sore, but there are all these random things that make them hurt more, like pull ups this morning, or a strong hand shake. Luckily typing doesn't cause any problems.
We were knocking the other day and the first person, one of two, who was home was this older woman named Else. When She had been about to close the door it was when she said she new about our church and had a few problems with it so she didn't want to talk. We asked her what those were and she when't off about how our church forces us to do the things we do and she has no idea how anyone could be happy in the Mormon church. She told us about how her daughter back in the States had a friend who is LDS and that the next time she's in the States visiting her daughter she's going to go to church with the friend to see what it was about. A great opportunity! I invited her to church on the spot, telling her about all she would learn coming to church with us the next Sunday. She seemed interested and we talked for a little bit and resolved a few other concerns and then after giving her the address and times she told us she would probably see us on Sunday. And that we could stop by to teach her more! She didn't end up coming to church unfortunately. Maybe next week after we have stopped by and taught her a lesson. She did say though to tell our parents thank you for raising us so well. And yes Thank you! It actually led to two potential investigators this week. Both older women, Else and Inger who we talked to while contacting on the fjord. She also was about to turn us away, but we were able to start a conversation and she when't off about how such nice young men we were. She even stopped another older couple who walked past and started bragging us up to them. Going off about our Danish and how we had been raised so well. While Elder Durrant talked to the couple I talked to Inger and she accepted a Book of Mormon, surprised we would give her a copy for free, and promised she would begin to read it before we met with her again. She gave us her number as well, wanting us to come by and teach her more about the book and about why we are out here as missionaries.
We had a lesson this week with a few Jehovah's Witnesses. They know exactly how to be converted to the Church, because they do everything the opposite. Normally we begin teaching someone with simple important doctrine. They jumped write in asking why we fight in wars and why we believe Jehovah is Christ. They wouldn't pray with us either. Saying they could just do it on their own after the lesson, and they wont read the Book of Mormon. We have one more lesson planned with them, but if they aren't willing to read or pray I don't think it will go very far.
I was studying in Alma a few days ago and came across a few verses in Alma 5 that I fell in love with. Words that apply perfectly to why I am here and what I believe.
The words of Alma our my own.
And now, my brethren, I would that ye should hear me, for I speak in the energy of my soul; for behold, I have spoken unto you plainly that ye cannot err, or have spoken according to the commandments of God. For I am called to speak after this manner, according to the holy order of God, which is in Christ Jesus; yea, I am commanded to stand and testify unto this people the things which have been spoken by our fathers concerning the things which are to come. And this is not all. Do ye not suppose that I know of these things myself? Behold, I testify unto you that I do know that these things whereof I have spoken are true. And how do ye suppose that I know of their surety?Behold, I say unto you they are made known unto me by the Holy Spirit of God. Behold, I have fasted and prayed many days that I might know these things of myself. And now I do know of myself that they are true; for the Lord God hath made them manifest unto me by his Holy Spirit; and this is the spirit of revelation which is in me. I say unto you, that I know of myself ...concerning that which is to come, is true; and I say unto you, that I know that Jesus Christ (has) come, yea, the Son,the Only Begotten of the Father, full of grace, and mercy, and truth. And behold, it is he that (came) to take away the sins of the world, yea, the sins of every man who steadfastly believeth on his name. And now I say unto you that this is the order after which I am called, yea, to preach unto my beloved brethren, yea, and everyone that dwelleth in the land; yea, to preach unto all, both old and young, both bond and free; yea, I say unto you the aged, and also the middle aged, and the rising generation; yea, to cry unto them that they must repent and be born again. (Alma 5:43-49)
I have been called of God to declare his word unto this people that they may have eternal life. I know that this is Gods work. He loves his children so he has sent to earth his Prophets and has given to us his holy scriptures that we may come to a knowledge of him and live in a way that we can return to live with him again. His laws have been given to us that we may use them to become more than we could have become without them. I know this because I have lived them and have seen the difference it creates and the growth that comes from living the commandments of God. This is why I am here, to help others learn that they have a loving father in heaven who has sent his son Jesus Christ and that through him we will live again. And that through him we can be rid of our guilt, we can be forgiven, we can become more and we can gain eternal life through following him. I testify that I know that my Redeemer lives.
I hope everyone is having an amazing time getting ready for school to start again! Good luck and work hard remember D&C 58
26 For behold, it is not meet that I should command in all things; for he that is compelled in all things, the same is a slothful and not a wise servant; wherefore he receiveth no reward.
27 Verily I say, men should be anxiously engaged in a good cause, and do many things of their own free will, and bring to pass much righteousness;
28 For the power is in them, wherein they are agents unto themselves. And inasmuch as men do good they shall in nowise lose their reward.
-Elder Ken Burton