Tuesday, August 26, 2008


I've always been jealous of boys who serve missions for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  I chose to get married and have children rather than serve a mission, but I've still always been envious of the knowledge and training missionaries receive.

I know the Book of Mormon stories well enough.  And I know basic church history.  I don't know the Bible very well.  And I can barely remember the scripture mastery scriptures I learned in seminary.  And don't even get me started on the Gospel Doctorine Sunday School class!!  I swear, they really need to dumb it down for me sometimes!!

Anyway, the reason I'm saying this is because I decided that I want to know more.  And I know I am not going to get the missionary training in six weeks the way those young men who serve full-time missions do.  So I picked up my copy of Preach My Gospel and decided to add that to my morning personal scripture study.

I've tried to use Preach My Gospel before for Family Home Evening lessons, but even then, the way the book is addressed to full-time missionaries confused me.  I didn't know how to really apply the lessons to myself.

I'm recognizing now that it does apply.  I just need to follow the spirit and find the things that apply to me and my situation in life.  So I won't be proselyting, but I can still serve the Lord, right?

Well, yesterday I started reading the chapter on the attributes of our Savior, Jesus Christ.  I figured that was something I could REALLY use some work on developing.  :)  Today I read a part of the chapter that focused on Faith.

I've had a hard time with faith in the last few years.  The thing I struggle with is knowing whether or not I have it.  I'll be in a situation where I'm praying to the Lord and hoping that he'll grant my request or answer my prayer based on my faith, the way he's promised us in the scriptures, and I'll think to myself, maybe the answer is just no.  Maybe it's just not His will.  Or maybe I just don't have enough faith.  I mean, I believe that if I have enough faith that through His power I could literally move a mountain.  I believe that promise.  But do I really have enough faith for that to ever happen?  I mean, do I really believe it as much as I think I do?  Could I make miracles happen?

I read the scriptures listed in Preach My Gospel.  I read the passages in the manual and the Bible Dictionary section on Faith.  It was funny to me the way I already knew everything I read.  I had learned every word of it in Primary, Family Home Evenings, Sunday School lessons, Seminary.  And my spirit knew it from some time way before I can remember.  But somehow I had forgotten.

Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.  Heb 11:1

And now as I said concerning faith - faith is not to have perfect knowledge of things; therefore if ye have faith ye hope for things which are not seen, which are true.  Alma 32:21

Funny how I forget.  I don't have to know everything.  I don't need to know how the Lord will answer my prayer.  I simply need to have faith, to hope, that He will.  Simple.

I think I complicate things too much.  I over think my faith most of the time.  But I do have faith in my Savior.  I do have faith that by living according to His plan I will return to live with Him again.  I might not have all of the answers to all of the questions right now.  And I can keep searching for them.  Because if I know that if I have faith, the Lord will show me, in His time and through my sincere study, the answers.


Kristin said...

You are amazing as always. Your testimony is very strengthening to me. I have a huge need to have more faith! I hope you are doing well and I am glad that Jason was able to come home this weekend.

Sara said...

Not that I'd trade my mission experience (as I'm sure you wouldn't trade your beautiful kids) but just remember, that there are returned missionaries looking at the mother you've become who are envious of the earlier start that you got. Also, just like you forgot your scripture mastery, you'd forget mission stuff too. Life goes on.

I really liked what you had to say about faith. Our bishop said that we should all have our own personal Hebrews 11 - you know experiences that we can say "by faith...we did this and that" Like, "by faith, we read scriptures as a family and have been blessed...etc" Your post is a good reminder to get back to the basics. We ALL need to do it, don't be hard on yourself.

Also, I am almost finished with the HypnoBirthing book and I totally want to your input/suggestions as one having already done it (did you take the classes?) - do you mind if I email you? Main question - how do you convince your doctor that you aren't going to have to push?

Kyle & Jill Revell said...

Thanks for sharing your testimony on faith!

Breeann said...

I am in the same situation right now, in fact just yesterday I was reading those same scriptures and pondering the same things. I too wonder if my faith is strong enough sometimes but I feel if we are constantly and consistently working at it that someday we will get there. Thanks for sharing!

Jobi Niu said...

McKenna! You're amazing! Your testimony is incredible! I loved reading this post. I LOVE missionaries too.. I should get the Preach My Gospel manual too. When I was a primary teacher for 9 year olds I would be preparing my lessons and had SOOO many questions. I asked Enoch 5 trillion of them, he know them all! Missions do so much for people, if they truly serve worthy missions I think. You're an amazing mother, wife, friend, and member of the church.. I look up to you alot. :)

Griffee's said...

Okay you've really got to stop doing that...you've done it again. Gone and said exactly what I needed to hear today. I'm sad you are moving and that we didn't blog stalk each other earlier. See you at the pool tomorrow!

Emily said...

i'm so not used to hearing this side of you and i love it. i feel the same way about wishing i could have that extra knowledge from a mission. i thin kyou're doing an awesome job of finding the answer and that's all that i think we are suppossed to fo. just try to move forward and make ourselves better. you really are incredible.

Jared said...

awwww...what an amazing couple of posts. You sweet thing. You know, it's funny because I too have felt that exact way! I really do remember having a lot of lessons on "Faith to move mountains" and wondered how in the heck anyone could do that...obviously nobody in the world now days has faith to move a mountain... Anyone seen any mountains that have been relocated? j/k :D You really made me think a lot about myself with your posts. I wish I could be more like you and pull myself out of my negative world.

Hannah and Benjamin Aeby said...

I always feel like I should be reading more and doing more. You are an inspiration! Thanks!