Sunday, February 25, 2018

Apostolic Blessing

Today we had a sacred privilege and blessing. Some of you know that we have had a neighbor who is well known in the LDS community, because he's been serving as an Apostle for the past 10 years. He received his call to be an apostle in April 2008 (we moved into the neighborhood in August 2007). I recognized him when we moved in because he had visited my mission as a General Authority in 1998. He and his wonderful wife Kathy have been in the ward for almost 25 years, half of their married life. Today they spoke in sacrament meeting as a farewell of sorts. They have moved, so it was a way for them to say goodbye to us. I was able to stay in the meeting for Kathy's remarks and for a musical number by the youth - a medley of Sisters in Zion and We'll Bring the World His Truth. I totally choked up seeing my boys up there, especially Joseph, since he is so close to being a missionary! My eyes teared up. (Corey took this pic)
So after the song, Elder Christofferson spoke. And wouldn't you know, that was when Daniel started to be a stinker. I took him out to the lobby and then back into the overflow area where the speaker worked so I could hear what he said. And then I was totally kicking myself that I hadn't brought a pen and paper to write notes! Blah! Especially near the end because he bestowed upon us an Apostolic blessing. As soon as the meeting was over, I ran in and grabbed my notebook and wrote down the few things I remembered that he said, so from memory:
  • The Spirit approves in him giving us an apostolic blessing. When visiting congregations he always asks himself it is appropriate and if the Lord approves, It isn't always the case but the Spirit does approve of him giving us an apostolic blessing today. 
  • He blessed us with an increase measure of the spirit in our lives and homes. 
  • The Millennium will be when Satan is bound. Satan can be bound in your life now! (I loved that!!) 
  • Zion is here in our ward, we are an example of building Zion in the right way. 
  • He appreciates our examples. He often uses our examples in his talks, but not always our names.
Corey said that he saw Brother Ensign taking notes, and so I grabbed him and asked him for a copy of what he wrote. I'll update this post with that when I get it. There was a ward gift of a framed photograph of our church with the Granite bell tower with the US flag and the mountains behind, and we all got to sign it.
We will definitely miss the wonderful opportunity that we've had to rub shoulders with them, and I'll so miss Kathy's Sunday School lessons - her enthusiasm for the scriptures and the gospel is contagious! We love them! As Kathy said in her remarks (I was able to write this down before taking Daniel out!)- "We are here on earth not just to learn from books, but from good clinical lab experiences. Its' all worth it. Whatever we can do to endure to the end is worth it." To that I say Amen. We love them so much and will miss them.


Ok, so first, the notes from Brother Ensign:
Also, I got notes from a few other people in the ward. Sister Schmidt:
-Something about our prayers, then I bless you with an increased knowledge of what to pray for 
-Added love and an increased desire to love everyone more
-Bless us with a sense of the Lord's approbation for us.  He is pleased with your efforts, keep repenting, keep moving forward
Bless you with spiritual gifts in our lives as the Lord sees fit.
Especially gifts to be able to counsel effectively as a parent

Sister Morgan:
Kathy Christofferson - Our wards provide us with our “clinical material”, our lab experience to support our book learning of the gospel. After providing various examples of how she personally has been blessed by a ward, Sister Christofferson thanked us for being good clinical material.

Elder D Todd Christofferson - Themes of the talk: Firmness of mind (Jacob 3:1-2, Alma 57:27) Press forward with steadfastness in Christ (2 Nephi 25:24) (Helaman 3:35) Fast and pray oft. Grow stronger and stronger in humility, and more and more firm. Sanctification cometh as we yield our hearts to God. Apostolic blessing: (I seek the confirmation of the Spirit before bestowing an apostolic blessing. Does the Spirit authorize? Approve? Is it right?) Blessed us with: Added presence of the Holy Spirit, in our lives individually and in our homes. Greater harmony because of the fullness of the Spirit Greater strength to resist evil. That we might be consistent; be firm of mind. That Satan’s power would be less and less, to have no power over us Satan can be bound. Your Millennium can be now. I bless you with a protecting shield against his influence. That the fruits of your labor will be protected. That you will have added facility/ability/ease in receiving answers to your prayers (Pray frequently) I bless you with added ability to understand, to be guided to know what to pray about in our questions to our Heavenly Father Added capacity to minister, uplift, influence for good, even if you are unaware. Sense of the Lord’s approbation in your striving. Being please with your efforts. As often as we repent He will forgive. Spiritual gifts you may require from time to time Teaching, wisdom, counsel, faith as the Lord sees fit from time to time. The world will be more challenging. Will need to rely on faith. It may be the only thing adequate to overcome. I bless you with that faith. One of the good things about this life is that it doesn’t end. It has an end, but is not THE end. Revelation 7:16 They shall hunger no more, neither thirst any more; neither shall the sun light on them, nor any heat. 7:17 For the Lamb which is in the midst of the throne shall feed them, and shall lead them unto living fountains of waters: and God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes. (see also Rev 21:4) I bear testimony . . . as one who has been ordained as a witness of Christ . . . that He lives, and was resurrected. ------------------

Sister Morgan also said that this meeting was one of the most tender, sweet, powerful Spirit-filled meetings she had ever been privileged to attend. "As soon as Elder Christofferson took the stand, this Spirit began to permeate the room. He explained that he had felt impressed that they should move, and had resisted that impression for some time, but in the end decided they should follow the prompting (because we all know how it turns out if we don’t, he joked!). He spoke about having firmness of mind and pressing forward with steadfastness in Christ – that if we grow in humility, we will become more and more firm. We will become sanctified as we yield our hearts to God. He then bestowed upon our congregation an Apostolic blessing."

It really was a wonderful meeting. And we are so thankful to have known them.

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