Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Week 74: "Smile. It invites the Spirit."

Hello Everyone!!!

This week has been GREAT!!!! One quote that has been going through my mind is from Elder Yamashita when he visited our mission a while ago.

"Smile. It invites the Spirit."

I didn't really intentionally apply this principle, but I have noticed as I am happier and smile more, that it really does invite the Spirit. I've still got a long ways to go on following the Spirit, but I've noticed an increased in tune-ness as I have the Joy the Lord intends us all to have. For example, I just barely felt impressed, "go look at your phone". So I did. And it was dead. I'll be leaving in an hour, and I need that phone to be charged tonight. Having the Spirit with us prevents dangers, turns frustrations into small victories, gives us a greater reason to be joyful, and just makes life a lot better. Truly it is a gift! So I'm going to smile this week whether or not things go my way so I can have it with me more fully.

Now, why was I happy this week? Umm.... That would take pages to write, but simply put, missionary life is awesome. Here are a few miracles:

For the first time since I have been here, Bro Y, a less active with TONS of questions, came to church! He seemed to have a good time, and I am happy that he came. We had a particularly good lesson with him, and we feel like we have gotten some good revelation with him. He focuses so much on strange doctrines, and asks questions that demand far out answers. So we are going to focus on some basic principles from Gospel principles that he has been missing. Like God is our loving Heavenly Father. Charity. The Atonement of Christ, etc. Everyone can feel free to study the deep doctrines of the church, but never forget that the most important things are your understanding and testimony of the basic principles of the Gospel! If you know that God loves His children, you don't need to understand the meaning of all things.

Bro K also came for his first Sacrament meeting. I actually fasted THAT DAY that he would come instead of randomly leaving just a little early. And he came. That Sunday. Seemed like a very powerful and immediate answer to prayer. He informed me after church that he had a great experience, wants to come back for more, and wants to read about Alma the Younger (who he had heard about that day), so I showed him where he could read it in the Book of Mormon. He is SO awesome!

Then, a particularly awesome experience was just when my companion and I reviewed the transfer, the people, the progress, and the miracles. Just took a minute to slow down and talk because it was p-day and he is leaving. I didn't realize all the good that had happened!

So... I learned two great things this week. 1) don't ever forget to smile. Men are that they might have joy! There are really only two paths we can take - the Lord prompts us to take the path to joy, and Satan tempts us to the path of misery. Perhaps if we are miserable, we need to listen just a little harder for the voice of the Good Shepherd. (Alma 5). and  2) Never forget to look back on things and enjoy them as they last! Life can be tricky and stressful, but as we strive to follow Christ, we can EXPECT joy, because that is our life's purpose!

So smile this week! And never forget to remember all the great in your life!

Hurrah for Israel!!
Elder O'Reilly

December Mission Leader Conference

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!
(He got our package!!)

Everywhere we go!
(Fun fact: this Elder is going to Niigata B, where I came from a while ago)

Birthday party for Brother S and farewell party with my companion!
Member on far left and investigator close to baptism (in Tokyo 1st ward, long story, but I just did his interview!) next to him.

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