Thursday, January 28, 2016

Warpenter is a Go

Well, another transfer has come and gone which means we got transfer calls yesterday. We got the news that Team Warpenter is a go.  Both Hermana Waters and I will be staying here in Modesto for another transfer. I also got released as a sister training leader which means I get to spend my last two transfers as a normal missionary.  I am so grateful for the time I had as a sister training leader, I learned so much.  I am grateful though that I will not have that burden on my shoulders.  It has been hard not being able to dedicate all my time to my area. I don't know what I am going to do with all of the extra time we are going to have. Oh wait, I do. We are going to get on our bikes and find people!

This week was really good though. Hermana Waters and I have been working really hard on our teaching skills and teaching people and not lessons. One of my weaknesses is definitely letting my own knowledge get in the way of the spirit.  It is amazing to see how different the lessons go as we focus on their needs and letting the spirit guide the lessons.  We come out feeling so edified and with the peace that they actually understood the principle we were teaching and will be applying it in their lives.  We have been talking about all of our lessons afterwards, what was good, and what wasn't so good.  I think that has been a huge source of our growth over this transfer. It is hard sometimes because it is hard to admit that you didn't do well or that you need to improve. It gets a little bit easier each time.

In one of our studies this week we got on the topic of perfection and perfectionism.  The topic was started by Ether 12:27, one I know that many of us are familiar with. It says:

"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."

We talked a lot about the difference between having the appearance of being perfect and actually becoming perfect as the Savior commands.  We decided that the difference lays in this scripture and in recognizing our weaknesses in front of the Lord and in front of others.  Perfectionism is based in pride and becoming perfect is the opposite and is based in humility.  Interesting how Satan tries to twist that principle and make it something completely wrong.  I know that for a lot of my life many of my actions were motivated by what others were thinking of me.  It wasn't that I wanted to be seen as perfect but I didn't want to be seen as not being perfect, or somewhere close to it. We talked about how destructive that can be and how that that same mindset is what lead many of the Nephites to leave the church and lose their testimonies. I don't know where my perfectionist desires started but what I know now is that I do not want to be seen as being perfect.  I am not and nor will I be during this life time.  I know that it is only through humbling ourselves, recognizing our weaknesses, and striving to develop Christlike attributes that through him and his Atonement we can become perfect. When we obsess about being perfect, whether it be about how we look, sound, appear, then we really are denying the Atonement. If we were perfect we wouldn't need the Atonement.  

Each and every day I become more grateful for the weaknesses that my Heavenly Father has given me. I love them because through them I turn to him and to my Savior.  It is through this turning that I then gain access to the power of the Atonement and the power to change who I am.  I love the peace that comes when the only the only thing I have to worry about is what the Lord thinks about what I am doing and who I am.  I know that he will always be satisfied as long as I am doing my best and as long as I pick myself back up again after I fall.  Acknowledging our weaknesses is where the real strength is.

Life is good though. I can't believe I only have two transfers left.  My time is short and I just want to make the most of it. I hope that everyone is doing well and that you all have a good week. Love you all!


Hermana Carpenter

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