Adventures of Kali in Cali: Kali's Mission Farewell

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Kali's Mission Farewell

Good morning brothers and sisters. I would just like to thank everyone who came today to support me as I prepare to serve a mission. I am very grateful for the influence that all of you have had in my life. For those of you who don’t know I have been called to the California Los Angeles Spanish speaking mission. I am so excited and beyond grateful for the opportunity that I get to serve the people of LA and my Savior as well.
As members of the Church of Jesus Christ we believe in God the Eternal Father and in His Son, Jesus Christ and in the Holy Ghost. We are given the power of the Holy Ghost after baptism and after we are confirmed a member of the church. We are given the opportunity to have a constant companion with us who helps in time of trouble and need. The Holy Ghost speaks to us in a small and simple voice. Never in a yelling or loud manner. To hear of the promptings we must be focused and ready to hear what the Holy Ghost has to say to us. Then we must act on the promptings.
As a beehive I remember having the lessons where we were asked what our favorite gift that we have ever received was and why. My answer was usually something like a new softball bat, glove, or a new pair of cleats. Although those were definitely some of the best physical gifts I have received the answer that our leaders were mostly wanting to hear was the Holy Ghost. As I have reflected on my life and as I “retire” my glove and bat I now more fully realize that the Holy Ghost, or the Spirit, really is the best gift that any of us could be given and has had a great impact on the decisions that I have made. No matter how old we get we will never grow out of this gift, the battery will never die, and it will never be damaged. We can have the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost forever, as long as we stay worthy.
The Holy Ghost has many ways that he can help us. He comforts us when we need hope or love, reveals important truths to us such as whether the Book of Mormon is true. He warns us of any bad situations that we may be in and many more but the way that the Holy Ghost has especially helped me is when I have had to make important decisions. On this Earth we are given agency, or the right to choose between right and wrong, and the Holy Ghost helps with that.
For those of you who don’t really know me, I have a hard time choosing things. I can’t ever decide where I want to eat, what movie I want to watch, where I want to go to college… etc. Last year when I graduated from high school I was going to Utah State and I was not going on a mission. Luckily through the help of the Holy Ghost I have been able to make some important decisions.
When I first decided to go to Utah State I was super excited and obviously felt that I was supposed to go there but after a while I kept rethinking my decision and was doubting myself. As I prayed about what I should do BYU popped into my head and I wasn’t quite sure about going there because it never really was an option. I wasn’t even going to apply there but my parents convinced me to just apply. But as I prayed and fasted I had a strong feeling that I was supposed to go to BYU so I followed that prompting that I received. I never doubted in my mind after that that I was supposed to go there. As I walked around campus and met new people who have influenced me and my decisions I always had the strongest impression that I was exactly where I am supposed to be. That is another way that the Holy Ghost helps us.. He reassures us of the decisions that we have made.
When we have a question and we don’t have the answer the best place to find it is to turn to our Heavenly Father. We should pray to our Father asking what we should do and then wait for the prompting or answer from the Holy Ghost but we also have to do our part to receive the answer As we come to a point in our lives when we must make a decision we should inquire of the Lord first. He has a plan for us all and knows just what we need and what we should choose. One thing that I have noticed that I love in the Book of Mormon is that in Alma when there is a lot of war going on among the Nephites and the Lamanites the righteous generals usually go and inquire of the Lord before they make any decisions. In the end they always end up on top. As we strive to inquire of the Lord in all of our decisions we can end up on top as well.
In D&C section 9 versus 7-9 says… (read from scriptures) After we have asked what we should do we should then think about it in our minds and turn to the scriptures to find the answer. You may not find the answer word for word in the scriptures but the distance between ourselves and our Father in Heaven narrows when we immerse ourselves in the scriptures. We come close to the Spirit and are more in tune and have better ears to hear what we need.
After we immerse ourselves in the scriptures we need to wait and listen. The Lord works on His own timing. We must be patient. In a world where everything is instant it is very hard to be patient. We will get our answer whether it is right when we finish praying or even a month later. As I have looked back on some of the times I have asked for help or need an answer I realize that this is the part that I skip the most. After I say my prayer I go straight to bed. How can I feel the promptings that I need if I am asleep? One Sunday School lesson Brother Campbell challenged us to pray for the Holy Ghost to touch our hearts and then after the prayer we needed to stay on our knees for about 5 minutes or until we feel the Spirit. This really opened my eyes and made me realize that I don’t give the Holy Ghost enough time to answer my prayers but I just assume that I should have the answer right away.
Once we get our answer we must act on the prompting that we receive. Whenever I get a prompting I always question whether it is just one of my own thoughts or if it is actually the Holy Ghost. Elder Bednar reassures us that,”If you and I have a sincere desire for the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost, invite His influence into our lives through our obedience and actions, and learn to heed simple promptings and to do so quickly, then I testify and promise that we will be able to tell the difference between our own emotions telling us what we want to hear and the Holy Ghost telling us what we need to hear.” One thing that I have also thought about is what if I mistake my own thoughts for the promptings of the Holy Ghost. That is the beauty of the Atonement. Although we should learn to decipher the difference we are given the chance to be forgive of missing the prompting and we are allowed to try again. The Lord will never give up on us no matter how many times we make a mistake.
For a while I was not planning on going on a mission. I had decided… on my own… without the help of the Holy Ghost… that it was not something for me and I would just get school done as fast as I could and I was content with that. One day I was reading my scriptures and the thought that I should think more about a mission popped into my head. To be honest I kind of shook it off because I reminded myself that it wasn’t for me and I was just going to school. The thought kept coming back to me and finally I decided to act on it. I decided that I needed to ask my Heavenly Father if is this was really something that I should do. I prayed every morning and night, read my scriptures, went to the temple and fasted for my answer. I did this for about two weeks and still hadn’t had my answer so I was starting to get a little frustrated but then that Sunday I prayed again to know. As I was sitting in church that day I realized that the main message that I had gotten out of all the talks and lessons was about missionary work and I had felt the spirit stronger than I have felt in a long time. I had felt the impression that I was supposed to go and serve a mission. Being the stubborn person that I am I again was not quite sure. I thought, “I can’t do that. I don’t know enough about this Gospel how can I teach others about it? I don’t think I can leave my family for that long.” I later prayed but this time I asked my Heavenly Father, “Am I really supposed to go on a mission?” As soon as I finished my prayer all the doubts that I had in mind just a few minutes before were completely gone. I knew, without a doubt that I was supposed to serve a mission and that I was going to be the best missionary that I could be. I am so grateful that the Holy Ghost did not give up on me after giving me the first, second, and even third prompting. Our Heavenly Father wants the best for us and He wants us to return to live with Him again. He gave us the Holy Ghost so that we could have some assistance when we needed it.
To finish my talk I would like to end with a piece of an article from the Ensign by James E. Faust, a former member of the First Presidency. He helps us to know how best we can keep our lives on track with the crazy world around us. He says, “I suggest a simple solution for selecting the channel to which we attune ourselves: listen to and follow the voice of the Spirit. This is an ancient solution, even eternal, and may not be popular in a society that is always looking for something new. It requires patience in a world that demands instant gratification. This solution is quiet, peaceful, and subtle in a world enamored of that which is loud, incessant, fast paced, garish, and crude. This solution requires you to be contemplative while your peers seek physical titillation. This solution is one unified, consistent, age-old message in a world that quickly becomes bored in the absence of intensity, variety, and novelty. This solution requires us to walk by faith in a world governed by sight. With the eye of faith we are to see eternal, unseen, spiritual verities, while the masses of mankind depend solely on temporal things which can be known only through the physical senses.
We need to learn how to ponder the things of the Spirit and to respond to its promptings—to filter out the static generated by Satan. As we become attuned to the Spirit, we “shall hear a word behind [us], saying, This is the way, walk ye in it.” Hearkening to the “voice of the living God” will give us “peace in this world, and eternal life in the world to come.” These are the greatest of all the gifts of God. “
I know that this church is true and that Jesus Christ suffered and died for us. I know that He lives again and loves us very much. I know that as we follow the promptings of the Holy Ghost we can return to live with our Heavenly Father again alongside our family. I know that the Book of Mormon is the most correct book on this Earth and if we follow the counsel from the prophets of old and the modern day prophets we stay on the strait and narrow path. I am very grateful for the opportunity I get to serve a mission and to come close to my Savior and to also bring others closer our Savior.
And I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

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