Upolu Interviews-Round Two and SPAM

We completed our interviews this past week! I have never run a marathon, but I am sure there are many similarities. Pacing ourselves and staying focused takes physical and spiritual effort. We love seeing each missionary, even if it is the last interview. Enjoy the pictures; they are taken by District.

Also, this week I got a notice that the blog had been removed from the internet because google's automated system identified it as SPAM! My heart sank as I frantically reviewed everything that I have ever posted wondering where I had gone wrong. I had to request what they called a "human review" to see if the automated system had made a mistake. Two days later, the human who reviewed the blog determined that the automated system was wrong. 

I started thinking about SPAM; I wasn't even sure I knew what it was, so I looked it up. Of course, the  first definition is "a meat like product made mostly of ham." YUCK! I hate spam. The second definition is, "irrelevant or inappropriate messages sent on the internet to a large number of people." I knew then there had to be a mistake, but it got me thinking about the Gospel, the Savior and being a Christian. There are those in the world who view us and our message as irrelevant or inappropriate. 

So many in the world are lost and hopeless, not knowing where to turn. So many have lost their way by turning off their moral compass and embracing the pieces of society that keep them from knowing and loving God. Too many of us feel abandoned and lost. And yet, there is hope and help and love found in the Gospel--the good news from the heavens. 

These words by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland came ringing into my head as I considered what the Gospel of Jesus Christ means to the world.  He said, "Ours is not a feeble message. It is not a fleeting task. It is not hapless; it is not hopeless; it is not to be consigned to the ash heap of history. It is the work of Almighty God, and it is to change the world." When I thought I might lose the opportunity to share the Gospel through the miracles that occur here in Samoa, I was devastated. All of us who are disciples of the Savior must continue to raise a voice of commitment to Jesus Christ and his saving grace. This work is not a loud work; this work is a work of offering peace and hope and goodness to a world that seems to be losing its way. Our fourteen year old granddaughter, Grace, found the words of Isaiah comforting a few weeks ago when she was feeling troubled, "And the work of righteousness shall be peace; and the effect of righteousness quietness and assurance forever." 

The assurance that our Savior offers to each of us and to the world is the most relevant and appropriate message of any competing for attention and it most certainly is not SPAM!

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