Week 10 in the Utah Provo Mission

Hermana Kathleen Billings and Hermana Martinez in front of the Provo Temple.

Hermana Kathleen Billings and Hermana Martinez in front of the Provo Temple.

This morning WE WENT TO THE PROVO TEMPLE!  =D (Now I can add another temple to my list — one more closer to my goal of visiting all the temples in the United States.) I forgot how much I love being in the temple — there so much peace and happiness and light within the temple, and after the session I felt empowered, lifted, and strengthened. I recognize this feeling from when I would attend the temple up at BYU-Idaho. The spirit was so strong throughout the session, and as I listened I felt this strong desire for those we are teaching to reach this point to worthily hold a temple recommend and be able to walk through those temple doors and receive the gift of the Lord within those walls. I am so grateful for the Infinite Love of our Heavenly Father and His gift of His Son. I am grateful that after so many years of spiritual darkness, God reached out His hand again and restored His Church back to the earth. I am so grateful for the temple and the sacred covenants we make with the Lord within and the knowledge, power, spirit, and personal revelation He blesses us within those sacred walls.

Kathleen shows the paper Christmas tree that our friend Becci Rasche provided.

Kathleen shows the paper Christmas tree that our friend provided.

One thing I’ve been pondering these past few days is the importance of spiritual nutrition. Our physical bodies need a variety of nutrients, and we need food from each food group to receive those vital nutrients. Likewise, our spirits need nourishment, and those different spiritual food groups include attending church, praying, reading the scriptures, going to the temple, serving others, family history work, fasting, sharing the gospel with those with whom we come in contact, general conference, etc. We just can’t do one of them and expect to be spiritually healthy. We need them all together consistently for our souls (spirit and body) to be healthy.

The past few days I’ve been REALLY HAPPY. As I reflect back on what was so different this week, I realized that it wasn’t that we had more lessons or less cancelations, but my thought process has started to change. Instead of thinking, “Ugh, we have three more hours of this,” I’m thinking: “Okay, we have five hours with which we can serve God’s children today. Who can we help? How can we best use this time?” And even as I sit here writing my emails, I’m actually looking forward to this p-day ending because I want to go out and serve others.

Hermana Kathleen Billings becomes part of the Christmas spirit.

Hermana Kathleen Billings becomes part of the Christmas spirit.

It’s so interesting how a lesson from Hermana Pratt in the CCM (Mexico MTC) and Elder Bednar’s talk “The Attributes of Christ” have become so vital in my life and service as a missionary. One of the hardest struggles I’ve been experiencing is that battle with the natural woman in me and becoming more like Christ. But the Lord is helping me. A verse in the New Testament is really intriguing to me – “every branch that beareth fruit, he purgeth it, that it may bring forth more fruit” (John 15:2). The footnote for purgeth says purifies or test. And in Spanish, the verse uses “lo limpiará” with footnotes “le purificará o santificación.” I find that really interesting — as we bear fruit, the Lord purges us, purifies us, tests us, cleans us, and sanctifies us. (Reminds me of Ether 12:27.) I am so grateful for this amazing opportunity to learn Spanish. It is bringing a whole new look for me with the scriptures and gives additional insight into verses and absolutely BLOWS my mind! (I love it when that happens.)

Sé que Él es la cabeza de la Iglesia y esta dirigiendo Su Iglesia por medio de revelación directamente a su profeta viviente, el Presidente Thomas S. Monson. Sé que el Libro de Mormón es verdad y es evidencia conveniente de la Restauración. Sé que Jesucristo vive. Él nos dio un ejemplo perfecto para seguir. Somos bendecidos tener los relatos de la vida de Jesucristo en las Escrituras. Esta época de Navidad, les invito a buscar a Jesucristo y su carácter constante en las escrituras. Lleguen a conocer a Jesucristo, no solamente sepa acerca Él. Él nos ama y desea tener un relación personal con cada de nosotros.

¡Tengan una asombrosa semana! Continúen dependiendo en Cristo y orando a Dios – El escucha.

Another cat friend!

Another cat friend!

TRANSLATION of the Spanish above:

I know that Jesus Christ is the head of the Church and is leading His church through revelation directly to our living prophet, President Thomas S. Monson. I know the Book of Mormon is true and is suitable evidence of the Restoration. I know that Jesus Christ lives. He gave us a perfect example to follow. We are blessed to have the accounts of the life of Jesus Christ in the Scriptures. This Christmas season, I invite you to look to Jesus Christ and his constant character in the scriptures. Get to know Jesus Christ, not just know about Him. He loves us and wants to have a personal relationship with each of us.

Have an amazing week! Continue to rely on Christ and praying to God – He listens.

Hermana Billings

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