Sunday, May 15, 2011

Life Regret #4: Blue Planners



As mentioned in some previous post I have had 4 major regrets in my life. Most have been related to disobeying counsel from parents and church leaders. This life regret has recently made it to the life regret list but it seems that there was no way to avoid it. Whenever I make a mistake I try and retrace my steps to see where I took a wrong turn and try and avoid that path in the future. This one I had no warning of but I am hoping to put the word out so others don't make the same mistake I did...






I volunteered for missionary service for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints 6 years ago now. I was assigned by the church to serve in Pennsylvania to teach others the gospel of Jesus Christ, and serve the community in other ways. Some of the greatest joy I have felt in my life was during those two years trying to walk in the footsteps of Jesus Christ and give of myself every minute of everyday for 24 months. I wish I had more time out there almost every day. I met many great people and still in keep in contact with some to this day. It is a great experience to witness people exercise faith to make changes in their life to align themselves better with Christs teachings.

For me having a family is the only thing that comes close to feeling this joy I felt as I watched children of God come unto him in spirit and through the waters of baptism. During the six years I have been home I still pray and ask Father in Heaven for missionary opportunities. Recollecting on the past few years I have definitely had some but they have been small and not really the same as I felt while ministering in PA. It has been a little disappointing but I am thankful to God for what opportunities He has given me and will continue to strive to be as reliable to Him as He is to me.

While in PA, the church provided me blue weekly planners made from card stock. They had each day and time intervals just like you would imagine they would. Every Sunday another missionary and I would plan our weeks out as to what and where we would go and do. When we would meet someone we felt we could help we would write their names, phone numbers, and addresses down on the back. Use and weather would beat on these sheets of folded up card stock paper every week so every Sunday I would transfer the old information on the back of the new as we planned our week and threw the old ones away.

I walked a lot of streets and through a lot of neighborhoods in Pennsylvania. I probably met hundreds of people many to which had no clear understanding of where they came from, why they are here, and where they are going. I had the privilege of being trusted as a teacher for two years to these people in the state. Many people were baptized by authority from God and continue to live their lives full of faith. Some however I have lost track of and I am not sure where they are or what they are doing. I can only pray they will continue to trust in God in their trying times and places.
I regret throwing those blue planners away because I would be able to continue my work from home. I could have kept in contact with those who I came so close with and now have lost contact (although facebook helps). I could send the current missionaries serving in their area to follow up with the people that I found and taught. WHY DID I THROW THEM AWAY?! I hate that I threw them away. As dramatic as it sounds i feel like I threw THEM away. Luckily I have called the missionaries up serving in those areas and told them about where the people I can remember live. I am very thankful and pleased to report that some are being taught and some have been baptized. I found out just today that another friend of mine in PA has accepted an invitation to be baptized next month. I am really excited for her!

So if you have had the calling to serve as a missionary and saved your blue planners call up your mission home in that area and get the missionaries phone numbers and make the calls. You never know who might hear the whisperings of the Holy Ghost and want to change their lives but don't know how. If you are preparing to serve PLEASE don't throw away your booklet planner that they give now. I will always regret throwing away valuable information that could have changed some one's life forever. I am thankful for a loving Heavenly Father who has provided a Savior to help me overcome my life regrets by changing, repenting, and never looking back to old ways.

- Joe Macedone

 Doctrine and Covenants 18: 10-15

 10. Remember the worth of souls is great in the sight of God;
 11. For, behold, the Lord your Redeemer suffered death in the flesh; wherefore he suffered the pain of all men, that all men might repent and come unto him.
 12. And he hath risen again from the dead, that he might bring all men unto him, on conditions of repentance.
 13. And how great is his joy in the soul that repenteth!
 14. Wherefore, you are called to cry repentance unto this people.
 15. And if it so be that you should labor all your days in crying repentance unto this people, and bring, save it be one soul unto me, how great shall be your joy with him in the kingdom of my Father!

LIFE REGRET #1
LIFE REGRET #2
LIFE REGRET #3
LIFE REGRET #4

2 comments:

  1. That's a good idea. I did save all my blue planners but I haven't looked at them in years. I should go make some phone calls.

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  2. Don't worry Joe, right now, in the present, you are influencing enough lives for good to make up for not keeping your planners! The Lord will tie up any loose ends. Maybe the folks are ready now and maybe they will respond to current or future contacts better than they would have responded earlier... You never know and i really, truly believe that you are doing and causing more good for more folks than you realize! i also believe that you will end up teaching Seminary and tying knots with the Boy Scouts, so those regrets will solve themselves, too!

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