Sunday, October 31, 2010

God Answers Prayers: A Missionary's Testimony

There is a God. He loves us and He answers our prayers. Anyone who prays to Him in the name of Jesus Christ will recieve an answer. This is a true principle that has changed lives. Jesus Christ said,

"Whatsoever ye shall ask the Father in my name, which is right, believing that ye shall receive, behold it shall be given unto you."
"Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you: For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened."

God extends the invitation, but first you must ask. If anyone wants to know truth they can find it if they kneel down and offer up a sincere prayer. This continues to be true in my life. My testimony of prayer also increases as I hear the stories of others. One of which is my missionary companion Elder Ratuwara.

Elder Ratuwara was baptized in Fiji three years ago. He had just changed colleges and was now attending the Latter Day Saint Church college in Suva, Fiji. Ever morning there was a devotional where the students would get together and study about Jesus Christ. They were using some scriptures from a book called the Book of Mormon. He had been raised Methodist so he was completely unfamiliar with the scriptures that were being quoted. He wanted to learn more about the church so he began taking the discussions with the missionaries. They gave him a Book of Mormon and told him to read it and pray to know it is true. He did just that and God answered his prayers. His second year in the college he was baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

His parents were against his baptism into the Church. Elder Ratuwara later decided to serve a mission and his parents did not support that either. He began to pray that his parent's hearts would be softened and that they would be receptive to the message that the missionaries share. They were so against the church he figured he would have to baptize them when they pass away. However, the Lord began to work in their lives. His parents saw a difference in Elder Ratuwara. They knew that baptism had changed him. Soon after his prayer his parents hearts were indeed softened and he was able to baptize them before he left on his mission.

This story is repeated throughout the world. Everyday prayers are answered. Everyday people are reading the Book of Mormon and praying to know it is true. Everyday people are baptized into the Lord's Church. God does answer prayers. I exhort you to get down on you knees and speak with your Heavenly Father. Tell him of your trials. Ask Him to lead you to truth. If you ask "with a sincere heart, with real intent, having faith in Christ" He will answer your prayers. Through prayer you can come to know the truthfulness of all things.

Order a free Book of Mormon. Find out for yourself through prayer that God has called a prophet on the Earth. It all starts with a simple prayer.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

We Can Make Hard Choices

"The young man saith unto him, All these things have I kept from my youth up: what lack I yet? Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me. But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had agreat possessions." (Matthew 9:20-21)

Life is full of difficult choices. Do I go to college or do I begin working? Can I quit smoking and drinking? Do I choose abstinence before marriage? Do I get married at all? Do I go hang out with my friends or spend time with my family? Do I quit my job so I can  make it to church on Sunday? Do I get baptized or not? Do I read my scriptures today or get that extra 30 minutes of sleep? Do I go out of my way to friendship someone? The list could go on and on. 

In the eternal plan our Father in Heaven has for us there are but two choices: "liberty and eternal life, through the great Mediator of all men" or "captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil." (2 Nephi 2:27) Every major choice we make in life will lead us closer to liberty and eternal life or captivity and death depending on how we use our agency. We should all choose Jesus Christ. Choose him as our exemplar and teacher. Choose him as our Savior and Redeemer. Choose him as our shoulder to lean on. Choose to walk on the straight and narrow. Choose to avoid temptation. When we choose Jesus Christ, "Our character will be developed and refined" because "despite prevailing wisdom, there really is a right and wrong in the world. Truth isn't relative and sin isn't just some unenlightened person's "value judgment"".

Jesus lives. He died for our sins. He is God's Only Begotten Son. God is our Heavenly Father. He has prepared a way for us to return to live with Him. When we choose to keep his commandments we are blessed. There is a law. We will be punished for our sins if we do not follow the straight and narrow path Jesus Christ has paved for us to follow. This is reality. There is a God. He loves us. He wants us to be happy so he gives us commandments and gives us the freedom to choose.

Sometimes choosing the right is hard. Well I am here to tell you that we all can make those hard choices. Choose now liberty and eternal life. It all starts with one choice that can change your life forever. Do not be as the rich man in Christ's parable who failed to make that hard choice. Rather, choose Jesus Christ over any worldly treasures and you will find that God has even greater treasures in store for you. Be willing to stand up against the tide of wickedness. We can do hard things and we can make hard choices. We have to make them. It is our responsibility as children of God. Let us show God we love Him and keep His commandments.
For more information on making choices visit:

Monday, October 18, 2010

Mans Search for God

I met a man yesterday who said something very interesting. He defined religion as mans search for god. It put a new perspective on what I do on a daily basis. I ask people all the time if they are religious? What does this mean when i say that?

Normally I would say it just to spark up a conversation about God. I want to find more about they believe. I want to know their relationship with God. People give varying responses from "it is none of your business" to "i am religious to a point" to "yes i would consider myself a very religious person." But what does it mean to "be religious." This i have never thought of. I figured someone who was religious went to church on Sunday. They read the Bible, or the Koran, or the teachings of Buddha. Basically, anyone with any sense of a higher power.

This is not the case. Someone who is religious is someone who is searching for God. I would consider myself religious because everyday i strive to become closer to God. I want to allign my will with His. I want to do what he asks me to do. I want to find Him and have Him in my life. Someone can go to church every Sunday or read the Bible on a daily basis but be completely unreligious. The "why" to all of it is what makes someone religious.

Do you go to church on sunday to search for God, or do you go because that is what you are told to do? Do you read any form of scripture to discover more about God or do you read it because it is interesting and it makes you feel good? Do you worship God in an attempt to become closer with God, or do you do it out of ritual and tradition? How much of religion do we take for granted? Often i find myself going to church because that is what i am supposed to do. Oftentimes i find myself reading the scriptures because i know i will be blessed if i do it. Often times i forget who i am praying to when i kneel beside my bed at night.

Let us all repent and be more religious. Let us all seek out God and discover who He really is and develop a personal relationship with Him.

God lives. He is our Heavenly Father. All who seek after Him will find Him. All who are religious will develop a close connection with Him and He will lead you to truth. I promise you that if you will pray to Him and search your heart God will lead you to truth.

I know that God has placed truth everywhere. In all religions. I also know that God and His Son Jesus Christ have organized a church here on the earth where His children can worship Him. That church is the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Be religious and discover for yourself this divine truth. Everyone should be searching every day for God. It is why we are here. To prepare to meet him. May God bless you with direction as you come to know who He is and how much He loves you.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

The Gate

"All we like asheep have gone bastray; we have turned every one to his cown way; and the Lord hath laid on him the diniquity of us all"

There once was a man who approached his fathers house at the edge of town. The house was beautiful and it had a long walkway that led to a door that hung wide open. A peaceful melody echoed from the entrance of this mansion. Upon hearing the enchanting hymns the man was filled with peace and he greatly desired to join in on the occasion. Unfortunately the house was surrounded by a fence that was too high to climb over. At the bottom of the walkway there was a gate.

It had been so long since the man had left his fathers house. Against his fathers advice he had wandered the streets of town searching for a place where he thought he belonged. Too many dead ends and unanswered questions led the man back to his home. The first thing that stood between him and his fathers house was the gate. He had forgotten the code that opened the steel door.

From around the corner came the mans brother. Taking him by the hand he pressed the man's fingers over the appropriate numbers and the gate swung open. Smiling brightly the brother hugged the man and, motioning for him to follow, he walked through the gate and started down the walkway.

Like this man we all have left our Fathers house and are wandering through town. Our Father wants us to return to live with him. His door is open to all who wish to enter. The way is prepared for all. Jesus Christ has showed us the way. He has set forth the way to open the gate. That gate is Baptism. The Book of Mormon prophet Nephi stated:

"Wherefore, do the things which I have told you I have seen that your Lord and your Redeemer should do; for, for this cause have they been shown unto me, that ye might know the gate by which ye should enter. For the gate by which ye should enter is repentance and abaptism by water"
(2 Nephi 31: 17)
In order to enter on the straight and narrow path one must first be baptized. As an online missionary it is my calling to help others to find the gate and invite them to follow Jesus Christ and enter into the waters of baptism. I know that great blessings await all who take upon themselves this challenge. 

The door is open. Everyone can feel of Heavenly Fathers love. He answers prayers. He is waiting for us to ask and he will visit us with His Spirit. I invite others to search the teachings of Jesus Christ and discover the restored gospel. God has spoken and called prophets in our times. Search their words and come feel the warmth that envelops all who seek our Fathers house. We all are searching for truth. God is the author of all truth and he will teach us the things we must do. 

Come, follow my blog. Ask me questions on Facebook. Invite the missionaries over to your home to be taught. Feel of Gods love. 

I, and millions of others have entered through that gate. I have felt the Blessings. I have become a new person. I am here for you. I will show you to the gate. You decide for yourself to enter. The path is placed before you. I invite you to follow it and feel the converting power of the Gospel take hold on your heart. I promise you that you will want to learn more.

I give all my love and my respect. God loves all His children. "We claim the aprivilege of worshiping the Almighty God according to the bdictates of our own cconscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them dworship how, where, or what they may." 
Article of Faith 11
We all have a right to worship God in our own way as we feel prompted. I know, that if all men search for truth that they will find it. God will lead them to His church that He has restored to the earth through a modern day prophet. Come and look upon the straight and narrow path that leads to eternal life.

I invite all men and women everywhere to come and discover for themselves the blessings of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Your Servant,

Elder Mahrt