Monday, January 26, 2015

Weakness And Doubt

Mom, I just got your letter and it was amazing! It seriously came at the perfect time. Sometimes life beats us down or sometimes we beat ourselves down; either way that came in the moment that I needed a little pick me up. Life is good right now. In fact we have amazing investigators right now. Somehow I still feel like I'm not working hard enough though. I feel like I worked a lot harder in Enid and saw less success while here it is simply given to us. For some reason I felt better working harder even if it was for less. I want these last months to be the best ones.

So I shared some thoughts with my friend Haley that I wanted to sent to you. It's not super focused, but I like it...
If we were born complete we would never feel a need for God, so instead we are born with weaknesses that will teach us to depend on Him. Why?.. Why would God want us to depend on Him? Simple... We were not like our Father in Heaven and for us to become like Him, we would need the help of the only One who knew how to get us there. Heavenly Father sees your heart - desires, passions, frustrations, etc. - but more importantly he sees the end goal. He sees your potential and also sees the path to get there. Thus the words of Elder Holland, "God doesn't care nearly as much about where you have been as He does about where you are and, with His help, where you are willing to go". 

Then comes the weakness and the doubt. Why did I do that? Why am I not better? Why can't I be more like them? Why does this happen to me? In our time focused on "me" we miss the awe of what Heavenly Father has done for us. The fear of the journey blocks the beauty of the end goal and the remedy of Jesus Christ. But overtime our experience teaches our perspective to keep pushing forwards. One by one the challenges come and with the help of God we beat them. We learn something new and we feeling the exciting reminder that this truly works. Our Savior's atonement is real. Then we see the next challenge and the process repeats itself. The problem comes when we get so wrapped up in the immediate challenges of life that we forget how far our Savior has already taken us and that His help will never end. "We learn on the one hand that we cannot trust ourselves even in our best moments, and on the other, that we need not despair even in our worst, for our failures are forgiven. The only fatal thing is to sit down content with anything less than perfection. (C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity)"

I loved your thoughts on the "are you striving" questions. We are simply asked to give our best. Have a good week mom!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Now In Yukon Oklahoma....There Are Going To Be Miracles Here!

This has been a fantastic week in Yukon. I'm still getting used to everything and have no idea where we are most of the time, but I love it. Elder Whithead has been a great friend since the beginning of my mission, so it has been easy to play off of each other as we teach.

One of the greatest parts of being here was PEC yesterday. I was taking note of so many things because these men have a great understanding of gospel leadership and their example taught me more in an hour than anything I have ever read. I absolutely loved the way the bishop lead, followed up, counseled, and did many other things. My experience could have easily been drowned out in a room with great men, but they treated my comments like gold. I am so grateful to be here, and I feel like this is a ward that does great things.

D&C 10:46-47 And, behold, all the remainder of this work does contain all those parts of my gospel which my holy prophets, yea, and also my disciples, desired in their prayers should come forth unto this people. And I said unto them, that it should be granted unto them according to their faith in their prayers.

I love that our Heavenly Father didn't force the prophets to say everything. The scriptures contain words from men that cared about us and wanted us to have the knowledge they cherished most. It adds perspective and helps me to ask the question why the doctrine and stories written were so important to the people in the Book of Mormon.

Last week a girl named Bailey walked into church and told the missionaries she wanted to be baptized. I walked straight into a gold mine! She is super excited to get baptized and is learning really quickly. I have prayed for progressing investigators every day for weeks, so it's amazing to see answers like that come. She is quite the amazing person

I'm in the OKC 5th ward and it has been wonderful. I love the people here and I'm having a great time. There are going to be miracles here this transfer.

Oh ya I also am running low on contacts. My prescription was for 2 years, so they should let you get more.

I love you Momma! Have a wonderful week.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Transfer To Yukon After A Great Experience In Enid

This week was another amazing one as we begin the new year. I got the call that I am getting transferred to Yukon with Elder Whitehead. He was my district leader over a year ago and is about to be on his last transfer. We will have the Oklahoma City Temple in our ward boundaries which is going to be a huge blessing. Hopefully we'll be able to sneak over every once in a while

One of my favorite experiences was as we visited with Cindy, a new investigator, for the first time. Prior to finding us, she had been sincerely praying that she would be able to have the the Holy Spirit with her all the time. The member with us looked like a kid on Christmas morning when he heard her say that. He is a recent convert and was so excited for her. She talked about the way she felt the Spirit and how excited she was. Cindy is very intelligent and inquisitive. We had been praying night and day for progress and investigators, so Cindy Sutton truly is an answer and a miracle.

D&C 5:16 And behold, whosoever believeth on my words, them will I visit with the manifestation of my Spirit; and they shall be born of me, even of water and of the Spirit-

This verse stuck out to me this week as I read it. There is not doubt in the Savior's words as he says this simple phrase. I truly believe these great people we meet can, will, and do receive confirmation about our message. The gospel is simple and I am grateful for it in my life.

Leaving Enid is really sad. I have made so many amazing friends that I don't want say goodbye to. Last night we said goodbye to a couple people and it was so sad to think I may not see them again in this life. I truly can't imagine my life without the experience of coming on a mission. It is all worth it because of the relationships and conversion I have gained.

Thank you for all the support. I love each of you and am so grateful for the role you play in my life. Have a great week and year!

-Elder Hoddy

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Thought From Jake's Mission President

President Walkenhorst said this in his email this week... As we begin another new year I hope that you will evaluate where you are and want you want to become. Set goals for the coming year. Take time to counsel with the Lord as to what He wants you to become. Read and ponder your patriarchal blessing. Are their expectations that God has for that you are not putting forth enough effort to obtain? Remember that He has a "perfect vision" of you and for you. As Paul wrote to the Corinthians in 1 Cor 2:9, "Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him." What has God prepared for you in this coming year? What will He bless you with? What are you willing to do to obtain those blessing? How hard are you willing to work? What aspects of the "natural man" will you overcome next? Take some time to ponder and set goals for yourself

I hope you have an amazing week momma! I love you :)