Lighthouse Principles


This was a great week and the week of transfers! I was notified that I will be staying in Decatur for 6 more weeks! I am really excited for the opportunity to stay here because I really love it here. Since we were assigned here 3 months ago, we have begun offering English classes and playing sports with investigators. I am so excited for the opportunity to see these activities grow and develop even more than they have already.

We actually had a really cool experience this past week at the English class that we hold every Friday. Since we are in the beginning stages of the class, we don’t always have very many people that show up to the class. In fact, the first few Friday nights that we had the English class, nobody showed up! But we were determined and for the past few weeks, there have been a few people that have shown up each time. This last Friday, there was a man who came with his nephew and his daughter. The man and his nephew came because they want to better their English skills so that they can more effectively communicate with their employers and the people that they meet or run into while they are out and about. The daughter of the man had the best English out of the three of them, which is often what we run into. The children are often the people who answer the doors of Spanish speaking families because they are often the only ones who can speak English. Anyways, as we were explaining the present and past tenses, the man looked over to a paper we had up on the chalkboard that had D&C 4 written on it. He began to read it aloud and got to the word “embark” and asked what it meant. We explained it to him and then he went on reading and asked more questions about the sentence structure and words he didn’t know. When he was done with the scripture, he took notes on all that we had talked about. Then when he was done writing down what he wanted to, he looked up at the two of us like a bulb had lit up in his mind and then proposed that we just read from the pamphlets and scriptures that were on the table. There were no arguments from us missionaries! So we spent the rest of that English class reading from the “Restoration” pamphlets and the Book of Mormon.

Through this experience, and many others that I have had on my mission, I have seen how the spirit can send promptings and ideas to me and other individuals to open the door for opportunities to share the gospel. The role of the Holy Ghost is so important in everything we do. This past week, I had the opportunity to study a talk entitled “Achieve Spiritual Potential” given by Steven R Covey at a BYU-Idaho devotional. The part that I really enjoyed was his description of “lighthouse principles.” Using the analogy of a boat and a lighthouse, there are principles that we must abide by to guide our boat. No matter what we do, we cannot get the lighthouse to move and if we neglect to accept a truth then we are going to break our ships, or ourselves, upon the rocks. In other words, principles drive the consequences of behavior. I may want to impress you in a particular way or sell something to you. But, if I don’t talk straight and don’t tell you the truth, and you know that, the natural consequence is you will not trust me. Trust is the product of trustworthiness. So I have to live with the lighthouse principles. We don’t break them. We only break ourselves against them. The Holy Ghost, the master teacher, is the one that points out these lighthouse principles to us and makes it clear to us that there is no altering of these principles or commandments. We can only break ourselves on them if we try to get them to move to the side for us. Check out his complete talk at

I am so grateful for all of the wonderful experiences that I am having here and all of the wonderful people that I am having the opportunity to meet. I love and miss everybody back home and hope you have a wonderful week!


Elder Neser


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