Malo homou lelei!
Tonga has been going crazy the past weeks over the Rugby League World Cup. There is barely a moment where someone isn’t mentioning or screaming Mate Ma’a Tonga, which is the Tongan national team name and means “Die For Tonga”. That’s how intense Tongans are about representing their nation in sports – or anything for that matter!
Transfers were supposed to be last Sunday but President was busy attending the establishment of a new stake in Vava’u. So it was delayed to Monday, but then delayed again to this upcoming Sunday. Bit of a strange twist, but I think we are staying here in ‘Utulau anyway.
We were blessed yesterday to receive two new investigators, thanks to the work of the members here. They are two young girls who are relatives of a member of the ward. We shared the message of the Restoration and gave them both copies of the Book of Mormon to read and pray over. It had been a while since we had taught a full lesson in such a way, so I thought I might be a little rusty but it turned out to be one of the best lessons I have been in. The Spirit guided us and reminded us of what we needed to teach. I am looking forward to seeing the progress of these two.
Something I have pondered over and received more understanding of recently is how faith is not something we can obtain by ourselves but is a gift from God. Faith is not something we should ever struggle alone over; we must rely on God to give us faith when we feel that we lack it. Doubts will come naturally and are not sinful but the correct action is then to ask God for faith to overcome those doubts. I have always thought doubts were to be overcome by reasoning, which has its place, but the only permanent solution is that we must plead to God for the gift of faith.
Some have this gift naturally as described in D&C 46 –
13 To some it is given by the Holy Ghost to know that Jesus Christ is the Son of God, and that he was crucified for the sins of the world.
14 To others it is given to believe on their words, that they also might have eternal life if they continue faithful.
– but as 46:11 explains:
11 For all have not every gift given unto them; for there are many gifts, and to every man is given a gift by the Spirit of God.
The conclusion that can be made is that many, maybe even most people do not naturally have faith. And since 46:26 shows that all gifts, including faith, come from God…
26 And all these gifts come from God, for the benefit of the children of God.
…then the only way they can receive faith is by asking God for it. We are given the promise in 46:30 that…
30 He that asketh in the Spirit asketh according to the will of God; wherefore it is done even as he asketh.
I personally testify to the truth of these verses. It is hard to describe exactly how an increase in faith feels – it is simply an empowering feeling and a perceivable increase in trust and love for God that can’t be explained except that I have asked God for that gift. I have realized that this is the only sure way to maintain my faith, by continually asking God. Others may have inherited the gift of faith and don’t need to do that, but probably for the majority of people it is the sure method.
Malo e ‘a’ahi mai ki he’eku ki’i blog ko ‘eni. Nofo aa!