I have really enjoyed this last week. There were two great things that happened this week. The first was that Jerome and Lydia both got baptized! They had their baptism Saturday evening and it was a wonderful experience. There is nothing like getting to see someone cleaned of all their sins, and then hearing their testimony afterwards. They always amaze me with the heavenly things they say.
The second was that we had interviews with President Andrada. He really is an inspired man. He always knows just how to help me be a better missionary. For these interviews he had prepared a little slideshow with some questions entitled "Becoming a lighthouse missionary." It was really good. He asked a lot of questions about my efficiency as a missionary, and gave me a lot of good suggestions on how to improve. One of my favorite things that he said was about magnifying callings. He said that magnifying your calling means doing things that are not written in the manual. If you want to magnify your calling, you need to do those things that are written in the manual or handbook, or whatever sort of guide is given, and then you need to find other ways to serve those you are called to. Find more things that you can do to make the world a better place. We need to remember the counsel that the Lord has given that "He who is compelled in all things... is a slothful and not a wise servant; wherefore, he receiveth no reward."
If we stop at what the leaders of the church have given us, we can't yet say that we are being wise servants. The Lord has entrusted us with our agency and he expects us to use it to make this kingdom a better place.
I'm not saying that we need to devote our whole day to doing things for our calling. The Lord knows that each one of us has a busy life. He does expect that we do put a little bit of extra effort into our callings. They don't have to be that difficult. I have a couple of examples to help express some things that can be done.
The first example is of a stake leader who decided to memorize the names of every youth ages 12 to 18 in his stake. He made little cards with their names and faces on them, and carried them with him to work and other places. He quickly memorized all of their names. He was magnifying his calling.
The second is of a sister who was called to serve teaching a class every sunday. Instead of limiting her studies to the material in the teachers manual, she sought out other materials that would compliment those given by the leaders of the church and help impart increased understanding to those in her class. She was magnifying her calling.
The third is that of a home teaching companionship. Under the leadership of the Senior companion they would make the monthly visit to each of their assigned family, but would also remain in contact with the family throughout the whole month. Following up their needs and offering help. Often times visits would be repeated within the same month to help these family with needs ranging from fixing a DVD player to helping with landscaping. They were magnifying their calling.
The last is of a man called to be the Secretary of a young mens presidency. He fulfilled all of his assignments and also made himself available to his brethren in the Presidency and found little ways to make their loads lighter. He was magnifying his calling.
My brothers and sisters, Magnifying your calling need not be difficult, but I promise each and every one of you that as you try and expand your service to the Lord, every small deed of goodness that you do will be noticed by the Lord and will be returned unto you ten fold. It was once said, "You cannot give a crust to the Lord without receiving a loaf in return" I want to leave this as my testimony to you. I love you all.