Tuesday, 6 September 2016

The Perfect Tree

"The perfect tree, grown in perfect circumstances, blows over at the first wind." - Brother Courtney, Patriarch.

The same message echoed this morning as I did my routine mix-match sit-ups. My companion and I had Especially for Missionaries playing in the background. One son i particular mentioned that 'He sometimes has to let it rain'. The above statement explains why. It was part of the plan - it is part of His perfect plan.

Last week Sunday, an investigator of ours pitched at church. Well, a lot more than just one pitched, but this one came for the very first time. We were elated, of course, but didn't think too much of it. We thought she just came to visit with her friend. She took a copy of the Gospel Principles manual and we parted to meet on Tuesday.

On Tuesday, we arrived to hear her bare the sweetest, purest testimony. Before, she had merely been there for the lessons, but now she took center stage.

In her testimony, she expressed having previously felt abandoned by God. She'd been abused, taken advantage of, and in that very moment faced with being without a home that coming Thursday. However, God is there, she affirmed. She felt it. She felt it at church. She felt it when reading the Book of Mormon. She felt it in her prayers.

Despite her current dilemma - which is quite an understatement - she had hope. She'd been reminded, in her trials, that she'd come through stronger. More prepared. Which reminds me of another analogy I'll get to in a moment.

In her prayer she said, "We know you are in control, and that you can do all things." Her friend who is a member prayed. My companion and I prayed. There was some fasting. We acted on impressions to speak to specific people. We had but one day.

In that same lesson she committed to being baptized. That's one more to the pool, which now consists of fourteen. Families, members, friends, neighbors. Referrals are coming. Members are sharing. People are hearing.

We continued working, as we waited on the news. And when we returned, we found that her concern had been resolved. It was a miracle. She continued reading. She continued praying. It took some work on her part, but through her faith a solution was found.

Which brings me back to the analogy. Imagine your favorite sports team is playing an important match, or your favorite character is facing a heart-throbbing predicament. You miss the match, or the episode, but have it recorded. Before watching it, a friend spills the beans and allows spoilers to slip from their mouth. Your team wins... your character comes through successful.

When you finally watch or yourself, you're not as concerned with mess-ups or slip-ups, because you know they come out conqueror.

The same is true when it comes to us and God. He sees the end from the beginning. He knows we can win, and He does everything to help us do it along the way. We've got this. We can do it. He sent none of us to fail.

​"​He that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his God, and he shall be my son.​" - Revelation 21:7.

In all things there is a purpose, and a season (Ecclesiastes 3:1)​. Therefore, be not weary in well-doing (Galatians 6:9, 2 Thessalonians 3:13, D&C 64:33).

​God is there. He lives. And salvation is free to all those who ​reach out and take; He forces no man to heaven.

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