Today was our Branch Conference and we were bursting at the seams. Of course they were mostly visitors from the Stake Presidency, High Council and auxiliaries, but that's okay. It's nice to get to know some of the other members of the stake.
Sister Cutler, a member of the Primary Presidency, spoke on listening to the Spirit. She told a story that I'll try to share. It's about a teenage girl she knows who works at a chicken fast food restaurant. One day she was working the late shift and it had been very busy. She rode the bus to and from work, and the last bus had already passed the bus stop. She was concerned because the only way she had to get home was to walk. Her boss could see she was a bit down, so he gave her a bag of chicken and told her to have it for her lunch the next day. She thanked him and headed home.
As she came to an alley she'd have to pass through she offered a silent prayer asking for protection as she walked in a dangerous area. About half way down the alley she could see a shadow, then a man grabbed her, told her what he was going to do to her, and began dragging her down the alley. Then a thought came to her saying, "Eat your lunch." Thinking that was a strange thought and ignoring it, the man continued to pull her till they reach the end of the alley that turned onto an isolated road. The thought again came to her, "Eat your lunch!" This time it was more emphatic. She struggled to open the sack of chicken.
A short distance down the dirt road was a pack of dogs, scavenging for food. As soon as the young woman opened the bag, they smelled the chicken and ran toward the attacker and the girl. The man immediately let go and began to run while the girl tossed the chicken to the dogs and continued her walk safely home.
Sometimes promptings may not be what we expect, as in this case. The important message here is simply to follow them and we'll receive the blessings that will come.
The 3 Assistants, Elder Asuao, Elder Griffin, and Elder Mecham, came to dinner today and all I have to show for it are a lot of empty plates and their spiritual thought, but forgot the pictures again. Dinner was really good, but their thought was better! It came from the Book of Mormon, Ether 12:13-15. Ether is talking about faith and sights the example of Alma and Amulek and the prison walls falling, Nephi and Lehi baptizing the Lamanites, and Ammon's success among the Lamanites. If you replace the word "faith" with "personal righteousness" you'll recognize that it is our personal righteousness that brings about miracles.
Here's the scripture:
13 Behold, it was the faith (personal righteousness) of Alma and Amulek that caused the prison to tumble to the earth.
14 Behold, it was the faith (personal righteousness) of Nephi and Lehi that wrought the change upon the Lamanites, that they were baptized with fire and with the Holy Ghost.
15 Behold, it was the faith (personal righteousness) of Ammon and his brethren which wrought so great a miracle among the Lamanites.
So Simple! So profound!