Who I am, Where I am, and what is this blog?

Hello, My Name is Elder Parker Bone. I am a Missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
I am currently serving a LDS mission in the Ohio Cleveland Mission I will be serving for two years and will be returning home in Summer of 2017.
I will be emailing my adventure in Ohio to friends and family and this blog will contain those emails.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

My Mission Farewell

For any of you that didn't make it to the farewell today here is the written talk. I just would like to testify that firstly this was not my talk, I wrote it yes but I had help from the spirit because without the spirit's help I would still be on the first four words. Secondly, That Our Heavenly Father, knows each of us and knows our fears and strengths and can bolster our strengths to overcome our weaknesses and make them strengths.
Thirdly, I know with all my heart that this is the true gospel for in no other way have I found such happiness and Joy then when I hear the words of prophets and when I read the scriptures.
I know it, I strive to Live it and I always Love it
Thank you all for the well wishes and I am excited to go forth and serve.

Dear Brothers and Sisters,
How great it is to live in this day and age! We are blessed to have such ready access to the gospel through mediums such as LDS.org. We also live in a time of Temples; There are as of now 145 Active operating temples across the globe with 28 either announced or already on their way! Compare this to the 26 temples that had been dedicated by 1983, The Lord is hastening His work.

Now I take you back to The second of August, 1833;

“And again, verily I say unto you, my friends, a commandment I give unto you, that ye shall commence a work of laying out and preparing a beginning and foundation of the city of the stake of Zion, here in the land of Kirtland, beginning at my house.” (D&C 94:1)
This Commandment to Joseph Smith was not an easy one, the church was just really getting started and was not exactly financially secure enough to build a house worthy of the Lord. However as Nephi teaches in First Nephi, Chapter 3 Verse 7;
“I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them.”
So Joseph and The saints started to work to building a Temple and In March 1836, The Temple was dedicated, and it is this dedication that I would like to talk about.
Joseph Smith gave the Dedicatory prayer and in it are many powerful promises that are given to us through Temple worship, from D&C 109: 24-28 we are told as long as we worship and Honorably hold a Name and Standing in This his temple, we will: “Have no weapon that is formed against them prosper”, “No combination of wickedness shall rise up and prevail over them”, and if any people attempt to smite the saints “They shall be delivered from the hands of all their enemies”
Firstly, what is a Name and Standing? To answer this I turn to Elder David A Bednar’s 2009 Conference Address “Honorably hold a Name and Standing”, Don’t you just love it when it’s that easy? He said and I quote:
“The process of taking upon ourselves the name of Jesus Christ that is commenced in the waters of Baptism is continued and enlarged in the house of the Lord. As we stand in the waters of baptism, we look to the temple. As we partake of the sacrament, we look to the temple. We pledge to always remember the Savior and to keep His commandments as preparation to participate in the sacred ordinances of the temple and receive the highest blessings available through the name and by the authority of the Lord Jesus Christ”
So to Honorably hold a Name and Standing we need to simply do as we are commanded by being worthy members of the Church which we are by Attending Church; so you all here have one down; Partaking of the Sacrament, striving to Magnify our callings and most importantly being able to hold a Temple Recommend.
I know that as I have strived to hold a Name and Standing I have been blessed with the Spirit as promise to us in our baptism and every week in the sacrament prayer.
So that is our part, and we are then blessed with protection from the Adversary and his Forces.
During the construction of the Salt Lake Temple in 1861 Brigham Young called the saints to action in the construction of the temple saying
“If you wish this Temple be built, go to work and do all you can… Some say, ‘ I do not like to do it, for we never began to build a Temple without the bells of hell beginning to ring’ I want them to ring again. all the tribes of hell will be on the move, .. but what do you think it will amount to? You have all seen what it has amounted to”
Brigham Young knew of the protection promised to those that are active in Temple worship, He knew that completing a temple was crucial to the restoration of the Fullness of times. Temples are a key part of The Gospel and if we are called to Build, Work in, or Do the work for those unable to do so for themselves, we are being called to a great work and service with in the Kingdom of God. as D&C 18 states:
“ Remember the worth of souls is great in the sight of God;... And if it so be that you should labor all your days crying repentance unto this people, and bring, save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of My Father! And now if your joy will be great with one soul that you have brought unto me into the Kingdom of my Father, How great shall be your joy if you should bring many souls unto me!”
I have always equated this scripture with Missionary work, and it is of course one about Missionary work, However It is also talking about temple work as we do work for the dead we help them gain access to the blessings of the gospel that they could not have without Temples. Working in temples is missionary work just not for those still on the Earth. I am excited to go forth and preach to the world of Temples and their importance in Salvation!
Returning to D&C 109 Joseph Smith, during the Dedicatory prayer Petitioned the Father
“That thy servants may go forth from this house armed with thy power and that thy name be upon them”
This Call of Having his Name be upon us is not a new thing, as we are Baptised and faithfully partake of the sacrament each week we Renew our covenant with the father Saying
“ That they are willing to take upon them the name of thy Son, and always remember him and keep his commandments which he has given them; that they may always have his Spirit to be with them.”
In the Sacrament prayer we promise to be willing to Take the name of Christ upon us and in doing so we will be blessed to have His spirit with us always. In Temples we are given his protection to greater extent and blessed with the spirit as well, all things within the Gospel happen with Order and for a Good reason, without the structure of Baptism the sacrament would lose its impact and without learning and keeping the commandments of Baptism how could you be ready and show you are ready to Enter in to His holy house and make sacred covenants? The gospel is always taught as it should be, the way we learn in Second Nephi.
“Line upon Line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little; and blessed are those who hearken unto my precepts, and lend and ear unto my counsel, for they shall learn wisdom; for unto him that receiveth I will give more..”
Joseph Smith wasn’t told of temples and temple work until 1833, Three years from the restoration of Priesthood keys. He, like us all today was taught first of Baptism and the Aaronic Priesthood and then was taught of and received the Melchizedek Priesthood. Once the Church was restored he was then given the charge to build a Temple. Brothers and Sisters, Order is important.
The adversary would Like to convince us otherwise, I know that not a few years ago I became rebellious to the order of things, I wanted to Skip steps and jump ahead thinking “ I am ready, why shouldn’t I be?” In truth I was not ready and as a result I lost important truths that I thought I knew, However I will Testify of the Great power of the Atonement! We all make Mistakes and falter, we are after all imperfect beings in a Fallen world. The most important thing we can do on this Earth however is Try! As I dusted myself off and realised I had Fallen I knew Like Nephi did
“if I have seen so great things, if the Lord in his condescension unto the children of men hath visited men in so much mercy, why should my heart weep and my soul linger in the valley of sorrow, and my flesh waste away, and my strength slacken, because of mine afflictions?
No. I told myself
“Awake, my soul! No longer droop in sin. Rejoice, O my heart, and give place no more for the enemy of my soul. Do not anger again because of mine enemies. Do not slacken my strength because of mine afflictions.Rejoice, O my heart, and cry unto the Lord, and say: O Lord, I will praise thee forever; yea, my soul will rejoice in thee, my God, and the rock of my salvation.”
I have felt the joy of knowing your sins have been forgiven and forgotten and I wish that everyone in the world can and will feel that joy as the burden of sin is lifted from us. I know that the Only way that we can feel that joy is though the Laws and Ordinances of the Gospel and that by His sacrifice we can all be saved at the last day. I know the Power of the Atonement in the Changing of the heart, that If you seek to truly change and work with all your might mind and strength that you will be blessed to become better than you could ever achieve on your own. I know that though the Atonement Temptations can be taken from you, hearts mended and minds can be changed as to make it easier to not falter again.
Throughout the Scriptures we are told of gathering and in D&C we are told how this relates to Temples.
“Therefore, I must gather together my people..., that the wheat may be secured in the garners to possess eternal life, and be crowned with celestial glory..”
The garners in this verse refers to Alma chapter 26 which reads
“ Behold, the field was ripe, and blessed are ye, for ye did thrust in the sickle, and did reap with your might, yea, all the day long did ye labor; and behold the number of your sheaves! And they shall be gathered into the garners, that they are not wasted.”
Again returning to David A Bednar’s talk we learn that the Sheaves in this analogy represent the Newly baptised members of the Church and the Garners are His Holy Temples. This verse then makes it clear that we must strive to attend temples that “the sheaves might not be wasted”
Brothers and sisters I am glad to be a Worthy recommend holder and be able to enter in to His house. I am grateful for the wonderful blessings the temple give us, ultimately to be sealed for all eternity with our families. I am grateful for this amazing opportunity to go unto the world and spread the wonderful cry that “He Lives!” I know that Jesus Christ is the Only begotten of the Father, and that all mankind can be saved by obedience to his commandments. I know that the Atonement of Christ is real, that you can be repented of your sins and that through His Atonement you can be changed to become more Christ-like. I truly Love this Gospel and the teachings it brings. I am so blessed to live in this day and age where the fullness of His true gospel has been restored and where “The fields are ripe and ready to Harvest”. I Know that Joseph Smith was a Prophet of God and that He saw the Father and His son as he described in His account of it. I know that The Book of Mormon was translated by Joseph Smith through Divine help and guidance. I Know that Thomas S Monson is the Living prophet and that He and his Counselors and the Quorum of the Twelve are all Prophets, Seers and Revelators. I Know this church is true, I have felt it in my heart and in my spirit. And I say these things In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen

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