Wednesday, July 27, 2016

July 25, 2016

Alex P.

22 years old.  Beast at basketball.  Quiet. Humble. Quick physically and mentally.

No this isn't an obituary.

Alex will be baptized this Sunday.  He has been through a lot during his stay here on earth so far.  We've been teaching him for roughly 4 weeks.  He has progressed so much.  He's come a long ways.  I love him so much.  This is just one of the souls that I have had the opportunity to teach and to lead to the gate of baptism.  I've thought a lot about this amazing calling I've been set apart to this week.  I am a representative of Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

I studied John 10 a lot this week.  It talks about the Good Shepherd being Jesus Christ.  At one point he calls himself "the door" of the sheepfold.  That left me wondering who the shepherd were.  Then I realized that I am!  We are!  Members of the church are and we know!  WE KNOW!  We know how all these people can stop the hurt, stop the guilt, stop the pain!  WE KNOW!  Why in the world are we not doing our VERY BEST to find and help these people to come unto the Master Physician?!  We are the shepherds!  Our circle of influence is our sheep herd!  We should all be helping all we come into contact with feel the influence of the One we emulate! John 10 talks about the sheep knowing the shepherd's voice. If we are truly emulating Him, then we are helping them learn the true Shepherd's voice.  I feel so very blessed to be set apart to this high and holy calling.  I get to represent the master Shepherd.  I am His set apart instrument.

Hopefully that all made sense.  Those were all thoughts I had while studying John 10.  You should study it by the way.  So. Good.

To close, I just want to say that I feel a great deal of love for my Savior. I know that he loves us.  I know that he hears us. I know it.  The Atonement is real.  It happened.  Never doubt.  The adversary creates doubt.  The Savior's overpowering, overwhelming love is ours.  It will forever be there.  I've felt it so much this week.  We owe Him everything.  It's my privilege to give Him my everything for these last few weeks of work directly in His service.

I love you all.

Elder Frame

Zone Conference pictures

Monday, July 18, 2016

July 18, 2016

1. 1. Ye elders of Israel, come join now with me
And seek out the righteous, where'er they may be--
In desert, on mountain, on land, or on sea--
And bring them to Zion, the pure and the free.
2. (Chorus)
O Babylon, O Babylon, we bid thee farewell;
We're going to the mountains of Ephraim to dwell.
3. 2. The harvest is great, and the lab'rers are few;
But if we're united, we all things can do.
We'll gather the wheat from the midst of the tares
And bring them from bondage, from sorrows and snares.
4. 3. We'll go to the poor, like our Captain of old,
And visit the weary, the hungry, and cold;
We'll cheer up their hearts with the news that he bore
And point them to Zion and life evermore.
My favorite hymn.  I have hummed this tune all week long.  It is so glorious to be in the work of the Lord.  The whole song makes me want to shout from the rooftops and rain down heaven-fire on everybody.  Blasting people with the gospel is such a joy!  I love it. I. LOVE. IT.  As many times as I say it, it always seems inadequate.  Being a set apart representative of the Lord is but a two year experience.  I'm going to squeeze every single miniscule bit of work into these last 4 weeks of it.  The people of Kerman won't know what hit them (until I help them recognize it was the Spirit of the Lord)!

"[I'll] go to the poor, like [my] Captain of old, And visit the weary, the hungry and cold; [I'll] cheer up their hearts with the news that he bore And point them to Zion and life evermore."

Love you all!

Elder Frame

Monday, July 11, 2016

July 11, 2016

Otra vez les escribo de los innumerable misericordias del Senor con gusto y placer!

Wonderful!  The word to describe the Lord's way of teaching us!  I have had so many experiences this week teaching me to be a better disciple.  I would like to share the one that stands first and foremost in my mind.  It is about a less active member.  I'll call him Jorge.

Jorge is a good-natured, burly, restless man of about 5' 10''.  Humorous in nature he acts like nothing is wrong.  If you'd met him on the street you would expect that he grew up in a normal home and had a normal life. But if you take a look at the life Jorge has had it would tell you a very different story.  Jorge has had many many trials and hardships in his life.  Some by his own making, some by way of others and some without any explanation.  Growing up in gang related activity Jorge has struggled in to find meaning and purpose in a life of hate, revenge and pain.  Addiction dulled the pain occasionally, but it was always there.  He's been in and out of prison for the past 25 years.  I met him when I first was transferred here to Kerman.  He loves the missionaries and feeds us a lot.  We always knew his past life was rough. We didn't ever talk about it because we didn't want to reopen old wounds.  This past week Jorge had many spiritual experiences which all came to a climax while we taught him a lesson from D&C 19:16-19.  After reading those verses Jorge told us his life story and cried and cried.  He told us how hard it was to forgive and forget.  How hard it was to lose friends and family members.  How hard it was to carry so much grief and pain.  We listened intensely.  I found myself praying for Jorge.  I felt heartsick for him.  While he continued to pour out his thoughts and feelings to us my feelings developed into more than just sadness.  I felt a genuine love for this man.  I wanted the very best for him.  I wished I could take it all away from him.  Then the thought came to mind: You can't. But you represent the one who can.  The spirit hit me like a tidal wave and I struggled to keep my emotions in check.  Here I was in a town called Kerman, a place I had never heard of before my mission, listening to an acquaintance of 3 months tell me his life story.  I was overwhelmed with the power of the calling and my setting apart to represent our Lord and Savior.  Most of all I was amazed and grateful for the wonderful experience of having a taste of what our Heavenly Father and elder brother Jesus Christ feel for us.  After Jorge finished his story I bore witness that Jesus Christ knew him and loved him.  I told him that Christ could lift him up, dust him off, give him new life.  The spirit was so strong there it was almost as if you could feel him embracing each of us.  It was so palpable.  That experience is one of many I've had on my mission.

I know that each of us is a loved and cherished son or daughter of our Heavenly Father.  He knows each and every one of us and our challenges.

I love my mission.  It has allowed me to grow in so many different ways.  I am especially grateful for the people I serve. I love them.  I feel so humbled to be able to wear the Savior's name on my chest and testify of Him every day.  The gospel is true.

Until next week!

Elder Frame

Monday, July 4, 2016

July 4, 2016

Whoa.  Let me just copy and paste some crazy wisdom about America my mission president just blasted us with today.

"Quoting from the D&C; “And for this purpose have I established the Constitution of this land, by the hands of wise men whom I have raised up unto this very purpose, and redeemed the land by the shedding of blood.” (D&C 101:80) 

Having declared America a land of liberty, God undertook to raise up “wise” men who would write a constitution of liberty and establish the first free people in modern times. He declared that the United States Constitution was divinely inspired for the specific purpose of protecting rights and freedom and eliminating bondage and oppression. 

“The framers of the Constitution were part of a special generation of marked political genius, raised up to deal with the issues that surrounded the birth of this, the American nation. That assembly that met to consider the weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation, but concluded their deliberations by signing an entirely new Constitution, constituted a conclave unparalleled in the political annals of man. This was no accident of history. It was, in fact, essential to the eternal purposes of the Father and the Son.” (In The Lion’s Den, Verterli & Hainsworth, 279)

Because of and by the constitution the Lord would bring forth the Book of Mormon and the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

“Those men who assembled in Philadelphia in the summer of 1787 constituted one of the most remarkable assemblies in human history. They were men of great learning, men of commerce, men of law, students of history and political theory, experienced in war, theology, and politics. Of the fifty-five men that set their hands to the task of writing a new constitution, most were exceptionally gifted… a [significant] number were men of outstanding intellect. What they gave to future generations was a political document like no other– a Constitution that made self-government, in the literal sense, possible.” (Ibid)

And self-government allows men to follow the One, even Jesus Christ. That this document was divinely inspired is of little doubt. Pres. Reagan told this story about the Signers of the Declaration of Independence and how they were struggling about the signing of the document. His source comes from the journals of Thomas Jefferson. 
Remember, their contemplated act was an act of treason against the mother country, punishable by death. Consequently, they had locked themselves in a room, we now call Independence Hall, and were hotly debating whether or not to sign: “The doors were locked, they were meeting in secret, there was contention in the room about signing the document, when an old man stood and told them that this was their greatest hour in the history of this nation and to step forward and sign the document and men would praise them forever. With the spirit they felt, they immediately went to the table and began to sign and when they turned to have the stranger come forward and sign, he was not there, the doors were still locked and he was gone. (Writings of Thomas Jefferson) (President Reagan told this story and one of the church curriculum writers called Senator Hatch and he talked to the President and the President responded with this letter, “I’m sorry to be so late in getting back to you about your request for more information about the unknown person at the signing of the Declaration of Independence who made an eloquent plea that it should be signed. The statement comes from the writings of Thomas Jefferson. I am confident in the validity of the story. I have seen it more than once in a variety of publications, which were not quoting me as the source. In fact, I doubt they even knew I had used it. Again my apologies for taking so long to get back to you. Sincerely, Ronald Reagan)

And then add this from a July 4th 1854 address by Orson Hyde found in the Journal of Discourses…“In those early and perilous times, our men were few, and our resources limited. Poverty was among the most potent enemies we had to encounter; yet our arms were successful; and it may not be amiss to ask here, by whose power victory so often perched on our banner?” 

"It was by the agency of that same angel of God that appeared unto Joseph Smith, and revealed to him the history of the early inhabitants of this country, whose mounds, bones and remains of towns, cities and fortifications speak from the dust in the ears of the living with the voice of undeniable truth. This same angel presides over the destinies of America, and feels a lively interest in all our doings. (See Mormon 8:35) He was in the camp of Washington; and by an invisible hand, led on our fathers to conquest and victory; and all this to open and prepare the way for the Church and the Kingdom of God to be established on the Western hemisphere, for the redemption of Israel and the salvation of the world." 

"This same angel was with Columbus, and gave him deep impressions, by dreams and by visions, respecting this New World…was with him on the stormy deep, calmed troubled elements, and guided his frail vessel to the desired haven. Under the guardianship of this same angel, or Prince of America, have the United States grown, increased, and flourished, like the sturdy oak by the rivers of water.” (JD, Vol 6, p.368).

Yeah.  I loved this a lot.  I hope you enjoyed it too.

Anyways.  It's been a really good week!  Our rigorous work this week culminated in nights of hard sleep!  I've been really tired this week haha.  Though tired, after teaching and testifying I feel psyched up to share even more.  There is a palpable energy that you feel after teaching the gospel with power and I love it!  Teaching solid truth and boldly inviting someone to change is one of the greatest feelings your spirit can experience.  It's an even more poignant experience if those you invite act on the invitation given and experience that power themselves.  It's the miracle of conversion.  I've seen it happen and continue to happen in myself and I've watched many many others embark on their own path of discipleship.  It's amazing.

On an ending note I'm so pumped and ready for this last transfer!  I'll be sprinting to the finish in this last leg of my spiritual-emotional-physical-roller-coaster-of-a-ride journey here in the land called Fresno.  And loving every second of it.

Love you all!

Elder Frame