Email October 13, 2014 – Elder Kenneth Wm. Burton
Bunch of Burtons
Happy Birthday Sam, Boston, and Boone! I sent letters last week, I hope they make it in the next couple days!
Ahhh.... we weren't able to get a ride this week for Familien Palargu for church. We had a ride worked out, a family that lived in their area had two cars and would drive both to church to have room for our friends, but then Saturday night we called and found out it wasn't going to work, one of their cars broke down. We're going to need to work even harder to figure out a ride for next week. It will be a little interesting because everyone has school off this week and are on vacation because of a tradition from when everyone worked on potato farms and would use the week off for the harvest. Kind of sounds like Idaho.
This week, on Friday I guess, we started something new in Holbæk. We had been in our weekly planning and had noticed again how we tend to have a lot more lessons towards the end of each week and not as many at the beginning. We figured that this was because we would get to a few days left and realize that we had a lot more lessons to teach in order to reach our weekly goal. So we've started setting goals for sections of each day. Each time before we leave the apartment we figure out how many lessons we need in the next few hours to reach our weekly goal, and then make a goal, for the evening hours for example, on however many lessons we believe we can teach in that time depending upon what we are doing. Its helped us remember each time we go out that we are going out to teach. Many times we kind of get into a rut of "finding" and don't end up actually teaching anyone. From the last few days we've found this new goal to help quite a bit.
A few days ago we were knocking and started talking to a woman at the door, we explained who we were and asked if we could share a short message about Christ because she was making the excuse that she was already Christian. She seemed somewhat interested but then turned us down saying it was a bad time. We walked down the steps deciding we would try again another time, but for some reason we both kind of held back, we didn't go straight to the next house like we normally would. We kept hesitating moving forward, when all of a sudden we hear a "Wait! Will you come in?" The woman we just talked to was inviting us back! Elder Eisert and I glanced at each other and then followed her in to meet the family. We then had a great lesson with the mom Line, her daughter Sara and their foreign exchange student Laura from Italy. They were very intrigued about the restoration and are excited to learn about then plan of salvation in a few weeks when their back from a trip to Finland.
In my studies on Wednesday I was reviewing one of Elder Bednars talks called Ask in Faith, and realized something I didn't notice before. The talk describes how we should act on the things we pray for, for an example a lot of times in church we pray for the people who weren't able to attend and we ask that they can make it next time. But if we are asking in faith then we should be going out and helping those who didn't come, to come next time. We shouldn't ask the Lord to do all the work for us. If we are to see the blessings we need to show our faith, because the blessings come after the trial of our faith. An example Elder Bednar gives, "We properly pray for the safety and success of the fulltime missionaries through out the world. And a common element in many of our prayers is are quest that the missionaries will be led to individuals and families who are prepared to receive the message of the Restoration. But ultimately it is my responsibility and your responsibility to find people for the missionaries to teach. Missionaries are full-time teachers; you and I are fulltime finders. And you and I as lifelong missionaries should not be praying for the full-time missionaries to do our work!"
What stood out the most was when he said, "I long have been impressed with the truth that meaningful prayer requires both holy communication and consecrated work. Blessings require some effort on our part before we can obtain them, and prayer, as “a form of work, … is an appointed means for obtaining the highest of all blessings” (Bible Dictionary,“Prayer,” 753). We press forward and persevere in the consecrated work of prayer, after we say “amen,” by acting upon the things we have expressed to Heavenly Father."
It says many times in the scriptures to always have a prayer in your heart. To be continually pouring out your soul to God. I believe this is done through continuing our prayers after we have said "amen". When we are following Christs example and are living the commandments we have the Holy Ghost with us constantly, it is this link that continues our prayers as we act on what we have prayed for. When the brother of Jared sought help from the Lord he prayed and then went out and acted before the help came. He did all he possibly could before the miracle.
We've now began not just asking for people to pray for, but then asking the Lord to bless us with knowledge for how we and our investigators can best help their friends. Of course some things are out of our hands, but that's when we must trust the Lords will.
I hope everything is great back home! Have a great week!
-Elder Ken Burton