This week we got to have Elder Pearson visit with us. He's a member of the Quorum of the Seventy, and he shared some really powerful things with us. Something that really stood out to me was his explanation of faith. He read that faith is a gift of God, always given when righteousness is present. When we are striving to follow His commandments, Heavenly Father will give us more faith. As stated in Alma 32, faith is like a little seed. It starts out as a desire to know more about God. As we pray and strengthen our faith by keeping the commandments, that little desire can become a belief in God. This belief is somewhat stronger, but there's more work to be done. Belief can become hope, the hope that we have in Jesus Christ and his Gospel. But as we continue to become better, that hope can become an assurance of faith. When we have this assurance of faith, we know that God is there and that He loves us. The Bible Dictionary says that from this increased faith, we can have an assurance of our salvation in heaven. I love the emphasis Elder Pearson put on faith, because without it, we really are left with nothing. Faith gives us a desire to work for more, and to grow into what God wants us to be. He has a vision for each one of us, and part of the reason we're here on earth is so that we can discover that vision for ourselves, and apply it in our lives.
On Saturday, we met with an investigator who wanted to come witness a convert baptism. She said she would think about coming, then texted us and said she wouldn't be able to make it. But we practiced having an assurance of faith, and we knew that she would come. We encouraged her, and she ended up changing her mind and coming! It really helped her to see other people being baptized.
Photo- Some of the view, I forget how close we are to the ocean :) But we were visiting a member, and she lives way up in the hills. It was a great drive, and we got to see some signs warning about koalas, though I didn't get to see any.