Wednesday, September 9, 2015

The Tree of Life Vision and the Lost Verses

Hola a Todos!

I must not be as cool as Nephi because we didn’t catch much meat this week—literally or figuratively. (If you are confused by my reference, read my last email haha)  Maybe I was stepping too loudly because every living thing I talked to scurried from my presence or lived in another part of the city.  And the meat I did have turned a little stale due to a poor environment.

We even went a little hungry this week due to a lack of food for a few days, and a water pipe broke so we haven't had water for three days.  But it is all good, just part of the life of a missionary :)

Reading the Tree of Life vision found in the Book of Mormon, I realized something is missing in that story.  So, in the vision there are the people holding to the iron rod (the word of God) making their way to the tree laden with delicious fruit (the love of God), those who are lost in the swirling mists of darkness (temptations of the adversary), and those in the great and spacious building (the world).

My question is, how do those lost and/or prideful souls find such a small and narrow road back to the iron rod? Do they just find it by themselves?  I think there must be some lost verses about pairs of young men and women running around with lanterns into the mists of darkness and the large building, teaching people where they can find this rod--the missionaries!!  Everyday I walk through a darkening world--telling people about a delicious fruit available to all at the tree. All they need to do is a couple of things and then they can taste it too!!

And my struggle is that people don’t realize they are lost until they see they are found.

One of those found brothers, who was just baptized two weeks ago, blessed the sacrament this week.  During a family home evening we had with him and his family, he asked me if I would give him my missionary tag when I left. I told him no, we aren’t allowed to do that.   He answered, "How will I be able to remember you then?"  It was a special moment for me.

In exactly one year from now (according to current plans) I will be on a plane leaving this land called Chile.  That will be an exciting day—but only if I do what is needed now, and there is so much more to do.

Everything is awesome,
Elder Phillips

Ps: (Trunky moment) Walking past an electronic store, a group of missionaries on their p-day happened upon a Star Wars 7 trailer and stood there watching with such unconcealed joy that everyone around them stared, confused by such an interesting gathering lol

Pss: And for all of you BYU fans, here is a shout out to my man Elder Tanner Mangum.  I hear he saved the game on the last play and is having his 15 minutes of fame.  Couldn’t happen to a nicer human being, who also happened to be a great missionary in my mission just a few months ago!  #lifeafterthemission

Mom's Note:  Austin will be excited to know that Elder Mangum had another miracle finish this week!

Elder Mangum
My Zone


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