Sunday, March 5, 2017

There's not too much to report this week as Sister Randall has been sick with the flu all week long so we've been stuck inside the apartment.
For P-Day last week, we went ice fishing, which was pretty cool.  With all that has been going on we forgot about fishing licenses but I'm glad I didn't waste $30 on that for one day where I got bored really quickly waiting for fish.  A few of us got in this ice fishing tent to make it easier to see the fish, but if anything, it kept us a little bit warmer.
We went back to the church afterwards to have ice cream cake to celebrate Sister Randall's birthday the day prior and that is when Sister Randall was feeling ill and with a fever.  I didn't think this would last all day, let alone all week, so the next day we went to help out this lady in our ward make cookie pops for a Young Woman event. Soon after that we had district lunch and she couldn't even eat the chicken soup I made for her so we went home for her to rest.
Later on in the week we had one of the elders give her a blessing and another day Jen, one of our potentials, brought over her essential oils and all kinds of foods that were to help.  She asked us if we have ever heard of the BRAT diet.  She said once you can start eating a bit the first thing you eat is Banana, then Rice (but it must be bland rice), then Apples (so she brought apple sauce), and then Toast.  It took almost the entire week for Sister Randall to start eating foods.  We were lucky to have the ward members bring us dinner the nights they scheduled us to have us over for dinner.
While we have been inside all week, I took advantage and tried to be as productive as possible.  Some of the things I got done:  caught up in my journal writing; painted my nails; exercised a lot; cleaned the kitchen; sent off our mileage report to our vehicle coordinator; and did a lot of studying.  I have been reading the Old Testament like a dramatic novel and reading the student manual along with it for better understanding. It is evident to me how much "plain and precious truths" have been taken out of the Bible.  I really don't understand how any religion can be based on just the Bible alone, for this book has been through so many hands who wanted to deceive and corrupt.  I was reading an enrichment section on the importance of symbolism and similitude and this study out to me:  "Couching great truths in symbolic language helped preserve them from those who sought to take away the plain and precious parts of the scriptures.  Unquestionably, many plain and precious things have been taken from the Bible (see 1 Nephi .....).  The Prophet Joseph Smith said:  "I believe the Bible as it read when it came from the pen of the original writers.  Ignorant translators, careless transcribers, or designing and corrupt priests have committed many errors." (Teachings, p. 327).
The Prophet suggested deliberate mutilation of the text.  But those truths couched in symbolic imagery that require the "spirit of prophecy," or the "testimony of Jesus," to interpret (Alma 25:16; Revelation 19:10) were not understood by these "designing and corrupt priests" and thus were left basically intact."
I know we need modern revelation to piece back together truth that has deliberately been taken out of the Bible.  I also know the important of then having the Book of Mormon to be a second witness to the Bible.  In it it explains a lot of misunderstandings in the Bible and even helps to explain Isaiah, which we all know is so difficult to understand because of the symbolic language and imagery.  The Lord talks to all of his children in all lands they may be in and is still communicating to us through his living prophets.  "If you have never read the Book of Mormon, read it", to quote President Thomas S. Monson, our living prophet today.  You can only know the truth we missionaries testify of by reading and praying about it yourself.
We were able to attend an institute class which the topic, ironically, was on the Book of Mormon.  This class strengthened my testimony of needing both books in our religion .  This week I even had the opportunity to read the Book of Mormon over the phone with one of our investigators and bare testimony to him of the importance of reading it everyday.  This book has brought a lot of peace to my life and gives me the hope to carry on through trials because I know they are to strengthen us.  My mother emailed me a pretty cool quote that goes along with this:  "The only way God can show us He is in control is to put us in situations we can't control."  ~ Steven Furtick

Sent from ALASKA!
Sister Shelley Willden

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