Tuesday, November 18, 2014

November 2014

Elder Hamula visited our mission and led zone conferences, a fireside for stake and ward councils, a dinner and FHE for senior missionaries, and our mission leadership council.  As we discussed his training during leadership council, we distilled the training into the plan of action outlined below. (Front: Sisters Goaslind, Judd, Pearson, Ballard, Clark, Jin, Syphus, Alder, and Heaton; Middle: Elders Holmes, Erekson, Meyer, Rodgers, Pres. & Sis. Eaton, Elders Russell, Wilcox, Gardner, and Quackenbush; Back: Elders Freeman, Dold, Thomas, Tuimaualuga, Downing, Elder Hamula, Elders Ludlow, Eliason, Berkheimer, Kim, and Bennett)

Expect Miracles
Five Righteous Routines for Exercising Faith

Elder Hamula inspired us all to exercise greater faith—the faith to succeed.   “When you give your best, you can expect miracles,” he promised.  As you exercise faith by internalizing these five righteous routines, expect miracles!

Ø  Every day and week, set inspired goals that stretch you and focus your efforts.  Elder Hamula taught us that “goal setting and planning are acts of faith.  If you’re sincere, they draw more effort out of you. Goal setting is intended to draw out of you full purpose of heart, full consecration.  The goal is your consecration, your full exercise of effort.  Not until you give in that way is grace extended to you to succeed.”  When you set goals in faith, you own them and care about them, whether they are personal goals to acquire the character of Christ or goals relating to key indicators.  They inspire you to do things you otherwise would not have done.
Ø  Study the life and teachings of Christ to become more consecrated.  “If you really want to go to the next level, individually or collectively, you need to consecrate yourself wholly and completely unto him,” Elder Hamula taught.  “A good number of you are still holding on to what you were.  Not until you are willing to give it all away do you get the most out of this experience.”  As you study the four gospels and 3 Nephi 11 – 27 over the next three months, ask yourself how you can become more fully consecrated.  Keep and study journal and write down ways you can live as he lived. 
Ø  Account to God daily and weekly for what kind of witness you have been.  Elder Hamula taught that “contacting earnestly and prayerfully everywhere you go is the price you pay to be trusted with the kind of people who will be baptized.”  Remember that “as in teaching, your efforts in finding will be effective if you are guided by the Spirit.  Have faith that you will know what to teach and what to do to find those who will receive you” (156).  Elder Hamula urged us to “stop talking yourself out of the first impression you get.  You are too worried about whether it’s you or Him.  Go with what you have.”  Each night “as you give the Lord an accounting of your day’s activities” (95), include an accounting of what kind of witness you have been that day.  And each week during the sacrament, ponder how well you have represented Jesus Christ during the past week and how you can better represent him the following week. 
Ø  Focus on people as you plan with faith, so that planning becomes a revelatory experience.  Elder Hamula said, “You have faith to be here, but you need to develop the faith to succeed here.  You do that by utilizing the faith-promoting tool of regular planning to draw out of you everything that there is to draw out.  As you utilize that tool and give all that you are, the miracle comes.”  Use those tools to focus on people, not just time slots.  Every night and every week, follow the 12 steps from page 3 of the planner to strategize about how to help each of your investigators progress and how to move the work in the area forward.  Talk about their needs throughout the day and soon your eye will become more single to God’s glory.

Ø  Update area books daily and use them regularly as a finding tool.  “The area book is a reflection of your planning and your faith,” Elder Hamula said.  “When the area book is being kept up and used regularly, there tends to be greater faith and greater outcomes.”  As you make your area book “the lasting record of your day-to-day efforts”—a record that is “neat, current and accurate” (140)—it becomes an invaluable time capsule for future missionaries.  Use the area book daily as a source of inspiration as you seek new investigators and help current investigators and less-active members progress.

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