Friday, June 17, 2011

Incredibile! (that's not a misspelling, it's Italian)

Today we had an amazing Zone Conference. Well, an amazing General Authority visit. Anziano Texeira. Wow. 

It was really sweet. Our mission is going to be on fire after he finishes his mission tour. He taught a lot of great principles of how we can improve, and him and Sister Texeira basically called us all to repentance. haha. Right after the visit everyone just went straight to talking to people on the street. We went to. It went okay. We met a pretty cool lady that is atheist.

I realized that atheist people usually tell me that they worked out things in their head and that's what makes sense, but then when we get to talking I usually find out that they haven't really thought it through that much, even if they claim that they have. For example, everything this lady said that means God doesn't exist ended up not working. She said, well I prayed and got didn't do what I asked for. Then I said, an earthly father wouldn't give his kid whatever he wanted whenever he wanted either. Then she said something like, a loving God wouldn't make war. Then we got talking about freedom of choice. Parents can tell their kids, don't touch the oven, don't touch the oven, don't touch the oven, but if they touch it in the end, they probably learn for themselves.

I can kind of understand where people are coming from, but I know that God exists because I've tried for myself. I've prayed and I've felt His love and the happiness in my heart that comes through the Spirit and I cannot deny that it comes from God. I feel like spirituality can almost always be related to physical things. For example, I don't believe that I can run five miles. If I never try that I certainly never will!

Or if you go intellectually it's like at first calculus problems seem like magic and don't make any sense. If you don't ask someone to explain it to you (be it a teacher or a book) you will never figure it out. In the case of God you must study the book, and ask Him for help.

One thing that I am still trying to do every day is go to a room by myself, kneel down, and pray out loud. It's great. I've had many recent spiritual experiences doing so lately. Ask God what you need to have the Spirit with you, and he'll let you know! He may let you know immediately, or he may respond during you scripture study, or while you're out and about.

Those last couple lines are something that President Kelly taught during the conference, and I've totally been seeing that working for me already. I ask how I can improve, and I generally receive responses quickly. If I don't correct what I'm doing, instead of receiving new revelation, I'm usually just reminded of what I still need to improve.

Tomorrow I'm looking forward to going down to Sicily. We're going to be there through Monday. I'll be in Palermo on splits. It's going to a blast.

We're nearing transfers. This next week we'll be meeting with President a lot.

Love you tons,

Anziano Ray Banks