by Ryan L. (Guest Blogger)
I recently got back from a full time mission in Scotland and Ireland for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. An LDS Missionary’s purpose is to invite others to come unto Christ by helping them receive the restored gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and his atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost and enduring to the end. God words this purpose as ‘his work and his Glory’ and describes it this way, ‘to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man’ (Moses 1:39). Simply put, Gods purpose, and my purpose now, is to help every one of God’s children have lasting happiness. The promises God asks us to make are the key to lasting happiness and peace; this is, I think, the greatest lesson I could have ever learnt while I served as a missionary.
When we make a covenant with God, and we keep our side of the deal, God will always keep his end of the bargain.
Christ and his Apostles were crossing the Sea of Galilee towards Decapolis, by request of Jesus (Luke 8:22). Partway through their journey a large storm had set in on the sea and in the hearts of Christ’s apostles. However, Christ was asleep, calm, and confident in this storm.
You see, there will always be outside influences that have the potential of destroying our peace, but it is our choice to let them trouble us. I heard it once said this way, ‘When you are in Christ’s boat, you are not going to sink.’ In other words, when you make a covenant with God, and you keep your side of the deal, you can always have the utmost assurance that all will work out for your good in time.
The first covenant you make with God on earth is the baptismal covenant. I saw some of my new friends in Scotland and Ireland decide to make this promise with God and they were guided by God past the potholes and mountains in their life. Jesus did the same to the storms in their heart as He did to the storm on the sea of Galilee. But just like any kind of weather, it’ll be back. So how do we keep the peace in our hearts when the outside storms return?
Why did I go on a mission for this Church for two years? Why do I go to church? Why do I read my scriptures? Why do I talk to my Heavenly Father through prayer? Why am I so happy?
I have made a promise to my Heavenly Father that I am willing to be called one of his disciples, to always remember my Savior Jesus Christ and His atonement which makes it possible for me to be clean from sin and rise above all of life’s challenges, and to keep his commandments. My Heavenly Father promises me in return to have the Holy Ghost with me at all times. The Holy Ghost always, with time and with patience, ‘[shows me] all things what I should do’ (2 Nephi 32:5) which is one of the greatest gifts of God. With this gift comes a fixed mountain of peace, confidence, and happiness about life and the future.
I invite anyone who has not already to read the Book of Mormon. Reading that book is reading the words of Christ which is the trail head that points towards this lasting peace and happiness. Go to Mormon.org and request a copy. Request a visit from the missionaries, or chat with members of our church, and they will be happy to do their best to answer your questions. Most importantly, talk to your Heavenly Father and after you have read a bit of the Book of Mormon, ask Him if it is true. I know He will answer you.