Saturday, April 23, 2011

Easter Freedom

     Hey, this is Sister Fulton! Sister Kenemore asked me to do a blog today and I am so excited to share one of life's greatest lessons. Since the time I was very young I would hear comments like, "It's a free land-you can't tell me what to do," or "I'm free to be whatever I want to be." Freedom really is a gift and one that's overlooked way to often. My dad has always been very passionate about the American flag and what it truly stands for. He's done many flag ceremonies and even flag retiring that have made me come to love the flag and the precious ideal of freedom it holds.  Hundreds and thousands of courageous and brave men and women have given their lives to bring freedom, and now after so much war, we can finally stand and say we live in a free land! Even the sound of that makes us so happy.  We really are so blessed to live free.  but even while being so blessed, living in a free land doesn't give us complete freedom.
  So many times we all experience heartbreak, sorrow, frustration, guilt, shame and there is only one key that would unlock the chains of the soul and bring us incredible peace and joy. That is in turning back to Christ, our Master Healer.  At this happy Easter time we can remember Christ and His Atonement and Resurrection.  He died for us so we can all live again, but he also suffered for us so we can live free and happy.
  As described in the bible dictionary under "Atonement," when we sin, we lose control over our own will and become a "slave to sin" and that's what gives us all the those bad feelings.  But whats amazing is that through Christ's sacrifice, if we have faith in him, Repent, be baptized by immersion, and receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, we can be made completely clean and pure.  now this is freedom.  Christ lived for us, He suffered and died for us, and now lives again for us. 
  So during this Easter time, lets remember the cause of our freedom and the incredible joy it brings, and as said in Galatians 1:5:
"Stand Fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage."

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

The Power of Sincere Prayer

  Many times in our lives we hear the term "Power of Prayer". This in my head has taken on a completely new meaning. As a missionary I have never prayed more in my life than the past 6 months. I have needed it. But it's not just power of prayer I have noticed, but the power of sincere prayer.
  We were visiting a lady the other day who told us she hadn't been praying. This made me very concerned because she understood that prayer was important but hadn't for some reason. There are a few reasons why we don't pray. Maybe we forget or we're tired or maybe as in her case, as she shared with us, she didn't feel 'worthy' to pray.
It hurt me to hear her say that she felt unworthy to pray. She had made some mistakes and felt like she couldn't talk to her Father in Heaven. I knew what she meant by that but those thoughts are only from the Adversary. Our Father in Heaven would never tell us we are not worthy to pray to Him. We can ALWAYS pray to Him.
  He is our loving, kind, ever patient Father in Heaven. No matter what we have said or done will change that. It reminded me of the scriptures in the bible in Psalms 38 when David had sinned greatly. He had a man killed and he also committed adultery and knew what he had done was very wrong. He knew that he would have severe consequences but this is not the point today. The point I am trying to make is that David still prayed. He knew he had sinned but he still prayed and begged the Lord for forgiveness. If anyone was to feel unworthy to pray it would have been him.
  We talked with this lady about this. We told her she needed to pray. Prayer is not an easy thing sometimes. But it is necessary. The past 6 months of my mission would have never been possible without sincere prayers to Him daily.
  We need to pray. Always, everyday our hearts should be turned to our Father. He is waiting to help us. We should be showing our love and appreciation for Him in everything we do and say. Prayers are our time to be alone with Him. To tell Him our frustrations of the day, to tell Him our joys and our sorrows. He is ever listening no matter who we are and what we've done. I know this is true because I have felt it in my life time and time again.
  If there is anything going wrong or missing in your life, take 10 minutes every morning and night and set it aside for a personal, private prayer with your Father in Heaven. It will change your day, your mood, your outlook on life, and feel closer to Him.
-Hermana Skroski

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

What is your desire?

    I'd like to start by apologizing for not blogging in so long! It has been a crazy week! There has been something on my mind a lot lately from a talk given by Elder Dallin H. Oaks in this last General Conference.  He answered two questions that I had before General Conference:
1. How can I be a better missionary?
2.  How do I reach my full potential?
Elder Oaks answered my two questions with one simple word, and that word was DESIRE! Since then, I have been so intrigued by his talk and by the word "desire"...what does it mean to have a desire? what should we desire?
   Elder Oaks says: "In his sermon on faith, Alma teaches that faith can begin with 'no more than [a] desire to believe' if we will 'let this desire work in [us]' ”
   He talks about 3 physical desires that our bodies have:
1.  food
2. shelter
3. sleep
  We all have the desire to eat or to sleep in a nice comfortable bed all snuggled and warm and sleeping without being interrupted. All physical things, but if we have a DESIRE for something more than just eating, like fasting for someone who really needs help, or giving up sleeping so that we can make sure that everyone else is taken care of when you are in the middle of war, then we ascend beyond ourselves.
  There was a talk given by Elder Bruce C. Hafen titled: The Atonement: All for All.  He said, "We can have eternal life if we want it, BUT only if there is nothing else we want more." When we truly desire something, we set our sights on that, and reach for the stars!
  I have come to realize that anything we do in this life takes a desire and when we let it work within us, and we begin to take the action necessary to reach that goal, it's not always easy, but it is so worth it! For instance, I have struggled my whole mission with getting up on time so I enlisted the help of a fellow Sister missionary to call me every morning till I am awake and going for the morning.  I am so grateful for caring people that want to help, and if there is anything that I can do to help my followers on this blog I will do it!