Thursday, May 30, 2013

Trek Prep Devotional - Lisa Johnson

In this amazing time in the church where His work is being hastened and record amounts of saints, young and old, are accepting the call to serve the Lord full time it has become clearer to me that missionary work is eternally connected with pioneers.

Samuel Smith was the first missionary of the church. He set out, on foot not knowing what an impact on the church his journey would have. His first day had not been a success. After walking 25 miles and not selling even one Book of Mormon, he was hungry, tired and discouraged. That night Samuel slept on the damp ground, under an apple tree. The local innkeeper wouldn't allow him to stay in his inn… calling him a “Liar” after Samuel testified of the Book of Mormon and it being translated from Gold Plates.

I have pondered this first night… how discouraged Samuel was. How I might have wanted to turn around and go home if I were him. Then I think about what happened the next day and remember that it is often through the trials of our faith that we gain a testimony of something or gain the blessing of MORE FAITH.  Samuel shared a copy of the Book of Mormon with John Greene that next day. Mr. Green was Brigham Young’s brother in law. Through many amazing circumstances that followed the entire Young family was baptized! (you can read more about this account in this wonderful article…

Moving past the trials of his first day and night, Samuel kept his extraordinary faith. Each person that was taught and baptized as a result of his labors became pioneers, breaking the trail for their own families’ path in the Gospel, on earth and for ancestors who had gone before them. 

Each missionary that serves now is seeking, teaching and inviting others to come unto Christ and be baptized. Those who accept become modern day pioneers. They have many trials, sometimes persecution and life altering changes ahead.  Breaking a trail is never easy. Whether it’s being the first pioneer handcart on the trail west… or being the first member of your family to accept the Gospel, each effort is a trial of faith.

As we prepare for this Trek adventure I often contemplate that there will be trials of faith along the Trek Trail. I draw strength from those who have gone before me, breaking the trail… and from the ability, though Christ, to break our own.

Lisa Johnson

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