Have you ever heard a passage of scripture spoken from the pulpit, a scripture you may have read a dozen times before, and then, in a moment of bursting epiphany, the words of Christ come to your awareness as if for the first time?
This . (This being my third MTC experience: My oldest son served in Moscow, Russia, and my second son spread the good news of the restored gospel in Louisiana–stationed near New Orleans during hurricane Katrina.)
In his orientation talk to the missionaries and their families, the president of the MTC presented two promised blessings:
1) The Lord will supply for the material needs of those who support missionaries, and
2) The Lord promises protection for the missionaries who preach His gospel.
In making his first point, the MTC president quoted a passage from the Doctrine and Covenants. The introductory summary for this particular section reads: “Thomas B. Marsh is called to preach the gospel and is assured of his family’s well-being.” Because God is “no respecter of persons,” and what He “says unto one, he says unto all” (D&C 82: 5), thus the following promise is unto all who support and sacrifice for the missionary effort:
“You shall begin to preach from this time forth, yea, to reap in the field which is white already to be burned. Therefore, thrust in your sickle with all your soul, and your sins are forgiven you, and you shall be laden with sheaves upon your back, for the laborer is worthy of his hire. Wherefore, your family shall live” (D&C 31: 4, 5).
As the MTC president made his second point, this was when a fresh spiritual explosion occurred. The following verse landed on my ears as if I’d never heard these words before:
“Wherefore, I call upon the weak things of the world, those who are unlearned and despised, to thrash the nations by the power of my Spirit; And their arm shall be my arm, and I will be their shield and their buckler; and I will gird up their loins, and they shall fight manfully for me; and their enemies shall be under their feet; and I will let fall the sword in their behalf, and by the fire of mine indignation will I preserve them” (D&C 35: 13, 14).
It was one of those “James 1: 5” experiences for me: “Never did any passage of scripture come with more power to the heart of man than this did at this time to mine. It seemed to enter with great force into every feeling of my heart” (JS-H 1: 12).
The saying goes “you can’t out give God.” When it comes to giving missionary service and supporting that work, this certainly is the case.