Note: For the duration of Riley's mission, this blog will be produced and edited by his parents, Daisy and Todd Stonely.

Monday, April 18, 2016

Week 44: Becoming Like the Savior

Dear Friends and Family,

This week was a growing one for sure! I am still getting in the grove of things in a new area with new people, but I feel that in a couple more days I will be able to manage on my own. I have a feeling Elder Valenzuela may be gone at the end of the transfer, but that's just a feeling so we will see how that goes! I have run into a lot of things personally in my studies that I have found to be really useful. I found myself listening to the General Conference talks over and over again because of the amazing counsel that we have been given! And this week in sacrament meeting we had the opportunity to listen to a guest speaker since our branch is so small... He was a PHD candidate in the area in Bible studies and man... He knew his stuff! But I found interesting his talk that he gave. He shared a story from his life about how he was always taught about covenants and Ordinances. So, as he grew up, he completely all of the ordinances. Though he said after he was sealed to his wife, he felt like he was lost because he didn't know where to go. He said he had always been taught to go to the temple and to get sealed, but beyond there, he had no clue. But then he shared with us something that he has learned over the years that I found helpful for my own life. And that can be applied to any of you who read this. He mentioned that after all the ordinances, our goal is to become more like the Savior by improving our Christlike attributes and increasing our priesthood power. He quoted from the talks given to us in General Conference from Elder Oaks, Stevenson, and Neilson. And stated that after the ordinances, we have a greater responsibility of increasing the priesthood power that we all have and becoming more like Christ through the Christlike attributes. He shared one of my favorite scriptures found in the 2 Peter 1:
    5 And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge;

     6 And to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness;

     7 And to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.

     8 For if these things be in you, and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

     9 But he that lacketh these things is blind, and cannot see afar off, and hath forgotten that he was purged from his old sins.

     10 Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall:

     11 For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.
And from this I really learned that I should continue to work on all of the Christlike attributes. And If I do that I can become more like my Savior and I can have the everlasting Kingdom if I do all in my power! I know that this idea can bless many people and help you all if you try to become more like our Savior! I feel very blessed to be a part of this ministry on the earth and know that you all can be blessed as you share the gospel with others. I am grateful for every tender mercy that I have been given and can not wait to continue to receive more every day! Thank you all for all of your support and I wish you luck :)

Until next week!

Elder Stonely

My new companion Elder Valenzuela.
Look at the adorable puppies!
Who looks more adorable, me, Elder Valenzuela, or the puppy???