This was a great week. By the time Sunday comes around so much has happened I don't even remember half of the things I've done.
We had Mission Leadership Council (MLC) on Wednesday. We put a lot of preparation into it, yet I was still feeling a little unprepared by the time it came up. One of the best ways to receive revelation is to counsel with one another. As you discuss principles about anything... the more you counsel the more the truth will rise to the surface. So the way we run our MLC's is by counseling with one another. Let me just tell you... it is not easy to facilitate a council with 38 people in it. I've done it many times before... but every time it requires so much spiritual focus and attention that it just wipes you out! There were moments when it would feel like we were way off topic and no where near the vision of the mission... but as things wrapped up it all came together. The last thing you want as a leader is to send mixed messages because then the vision can never really be carried out to the rest of their stewardship's. As weird as is sounds...my testimony of council's has definitely increased this past week.
We had Stake conference this weekend and Elder Bragg of the Seventy came. He seemed so young! There was no question that he has been called of the Lord. He was so personal and so genuine. He shared some amazing stories. One of the stories he shared was about how as bad as the world may seem at times with all its doom and gloom... The good still outweighs the bad. There was a church building in california that burned down a couple months ago... and he shared how the firefighters fighting the fire wanted to save any of the "Sacred Relics" that may be inside... they ended up saving all of the pictures of Christ that were hanging on the walls. They even set the picture of Christ praying in Gethsemane on the engine of the firetruck facing the fire hoping that He was there watching over each of the firefighters as they fought the fire. The chief of police had a gut feeling to clear everyone out and within 10 seconds of everyone being clear, the building collapsed. He testified that there are still many miracles being performed even when things don't look the way we want them to.
I heard a story this week that I really liked that helped me understand the role of the sacrament. A lady volunteered to go and help clean the temple. She was given a white rag and went around cleaning different things for about 2 hours. After wiping things down during that whole time she returned with her rag still completely white. As she left she felt disappointed because she felt as though she didn't clean a single thing while she was there. Then she realized that the temple is cleaned so often that it never has the opportunity to become dirty. She related that to our lives. If we are going and partaking of the sacrament each week then it keeps us constantly clean. If you clean as you go then there is never a big mess that will take a long time to fix!We have been struggling lately to get people to keep return appointments. No one can progress in the gospel unless they are willing to keep commitments. We gave a training about the simplicity of giving commitments and how if someone doesn't have a goal they are working towards... then they will never accomplish anything. You know someone has been prepared for the Gospel when they are ready to Act.
We will be working on Transfers tomorrow. I can't believe it is that time already!
Love, Elder Crandall the Vandal