Monday, January 13, 2014

Chickens and Changes...

  I was helping the one of our ward families catch their chickens to put back in their coop! one of my new favorite things! I've realized I'm such a farm girl!

Howdy friends and family!

This week has been really eye opening for me. I was really really struggling with some personal things and didn't quite know what to do. Wednesday we had our Zone meeting and our Zone Leader Elder Weed said exactly what I needed to hear- it was SO inspired! Normally Zone Leaders will give trainings about how to contact or how to begin teaching but instead he just talked about struggles. He talked about how we really need to make an effort to get along with our companion and really seek the Lord to be our constant help or else we as missionaries struggle and our areas struggle. It really helped me pin point exactly what I was struggling and through the Spirit of the meeting I received a lot of peace and hope. The next morning I pulled out one of my favorite talks, Broken Things to Mend by Jeffrey R. Holland. It explains so simply that the Savior's only invitation is to follow Him because "He knows the way out and the way up." Elder Holland so beautifully explains how we can truly come to follow our Savior and give him our things that burden our hearts. He ends with my favorite poem. For my 23rd birthday my parents gave me my favorite present ever- a journal from my grandmother Gwen who passed away before I was born and some of her books that she had marked up. One of the books was about Christlike attributes and broke each one down with lovely stories and examples of things like humility or charity. Well within this book is a poem about Jesus Christ and I want to share it with y'all:

In Nazareth, the narrow road,
That tires the feet and steals the breath,
Passes the place where once abode
The Carpenter of Nazareth.
And up and down the dusty way
The village folk would often wend;
And on the bench, beside Him, lay
Their broken things for Him to mend.
The maiden with the doll she broke,
The woman with the broken chair,
The man with broken plough, or yoke,
Said, “Can you mend it, Carpenter?”
And each received the thing he sought,
In yoke, or plough, or chair, or doll;
The broken thing which each had brought
Returned again a perfect whole.
So, up the hill the long years through,
With heavy step and wistful eye,
The burdened souls their way pursue,
Uttering each the plaintive cry:
“O Carpenter of Nazareth,
This heart, that’s broken past repair,
This life, that’s shattered nigh to death,
Oh, can You mend them, Carpenter?”
And by His kind and ready hand,
His own sweet life is woven through
Our broken lives, until they stand
A New Creation—“all things new.”
“The shattered [substance] of [the] heart,
Desire, ambition, hope, and faith,
Mould Thou into the perfect part,
O, Carpenter of Nazareth!”

I think it is so symbolic that Christ was a carpenter before he started His ministry. I know that because of the things He did when He was here on earth, because of the Atonement, He truly has the ability to fix us. There are so many times when I feel so broken beyond repair. In fact, when I first read this poem I was doing my best to come back to church but I just felt so broken and so unworthy of anything good and this poem gave me so much hope. There's something else we can learn from this poem, we need to be making the effort and pursuing Christ. That's what I realized last week when I was struggling, I wasn't doing anything to come to my Savior. I am grateful for the ways that God reminds us to simply turn to our Savior and give ourselves to Him. I can promise you that when we truly give ourselves and our struggles to the Savior, we will find relief.

I am so grateful to have this experience as a missionary. I meet people from every walk of life and testify that they will always have someone to turn to for help, our Savior Jesus Christ. I have seen the power of this message this past week. I have seen the hope it can bring into someones eyes. I will never be able to thank my Father in Heaven enough for this experience, for the things I have learned and the thing I have felt.

Brothers and Sisters, I know that God lives. I know that He sent His Son for us and that through Him we can overcome everything whether it be in this life or in the next.

I leave these things with nothing but love for my Heavenly Father, Savior and all of you!

Hermana Knight

P.S. Cool update about the woman we met in Wamart last week! We finally caught her home yesterday and met her boyfriend King James- such a character! It turns out they met with the missionaries for quite a while and loved it! King said he really wants to be "Norman" but he also wants to be a rapper. So we explained that he can be both! We are going back during this week and are so so grateful that Heavenly Father guided us to them in Walmart! Seriously folks, this was NO coincidence! Another testimony that God lives and His hand is in our lives! Also, our favorite less active couple came to our Ward movie night to watch The Other Side of Heaven! It felt SO good sitting next to them and having them there with us. I just love them so so much! 

Carolyn and me on her birthday.

 We have a goal to write in the area book every night and to make it fun we decided to wear costumes when we do it!

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