Sunday, February 9, 2014

Full Purpose of Heart

It's crazy to me how fast this last year has gone.  I feel like everything is going to be so different when I get home. Chandler's going to be 6'7" ending his Jr. year and Lindsay is going to be engaged (a vision I had the other day.  This way I can approve before the deal is sealed and have nieces and nephews as fast as possible.  The best of both worlds).  I'm not saying that I want to be home right now, but I’m definitely excited to chill with my family again.

Well this week has been a pretty good week.  I don't think anything too crazy happened because right now my mind is blank.  I'll tell you about some cool experiences we had teaching.  We were finally able to teach one of our investigators by the name of Rolly.  It's been like two weeks since we taught him.  I can't remember if I mentioned him in the past so here's a quick update.  This man is a genius.  He reads the bible in Hebrew and knows pretty much everything about it.  He let us into his house and he showed us his collection of books.  Most people have a shelf or two, this man had a library.  He had numerous editions of the bible in numerous different languages.  He had countless books on the Jews, Catholics, Muslims, Buddhists, everything. Unfortunately for him, he was missing the most correct book on the earth.  The book that can bring men closer to God then any other book. The Book of Mormon.  Don't worry, we fixed that.  We taught him about the Book of Mormon, how it testifies of the truthfulness of the bible, how it fills in all that was lost during the Apostasy and brings forth the everlasting gospel. The lesson was great. He has committed to read the Book of Mormon, ponder about it, and pray to know of its truthfulness. We all know what happens when people do that.  Hearts are changed and souls are brought into the fold. 

We were stopped by a drunk guy the other day that wanted to talk about God.  He told us not to speak Tagalog to him.  He insisted on speaking English, but we could not understand a thing he was saying.  We tried to nicely excuse ourselves, but he would not allow us to leave.  We were finally saved by a nice man who invited us into his house in order to get away from this man.  While we were there, we taught him the gospel. He had tons of questions so we taught him about the restoration. It was quite the experience. He invited us to come back and further expound.  We're pretty stoked.  

We had MLC on Thursday.  It was great.  Upon arriving, I noticed 3 of my favorite people in the world. Elder Washburn, Elder Haynie and Sister Grant, my entire district from the MTC that came to Manila.  It's always great to converse with my batch (all the missionaries that you came into the mission with). Elder Washburn told me that this would be the last time we see each other before we hit our year mark.  That was a kicker. I guess you could call this month "hump month". MLC was, once again, great.  Such a spiritual experience.  We have some great ideas for Zone Meeting tomorrow. I'll let you know how that goes next week. 

Elder Hawkins and I are doing great.  I love that kid.  We are doing some great stuff here in the Manila 1st ward. 

Saw my favorite family at church yesterday.  The Caras family. I have a great story for you guys.  So I told you in the past that they have a son named Yvan.  However, I never told you that he is actually 9 years old, ready for baptism.  We wanted him to be baptized with Carmelino, but they insisted on having Carmelino baptized first because they didn't feel like Yvan was ready yet.  They wanted Carmelino to be baptized first in order to set a good example for Yvan. Saturday, Yvan was baptized. You'll never guess who baptize him.  Yep, his father.  Such an awesome experience. I wanted to cry. I know I mention this like every email, but I love that family so much.  I talked with them yesterday about going to the temple. Their plan is to be able to go the temple early next year and be sealed.  Gotta love it.  I sure hope I have the opportunity to attend the temple with them.  Nothing would be more worthwhile then witnessing a family become eternal. 

That's about it for this week. I would like to end with a scripture that I have really grown to love here in the field.  

Mosiah 7:33 But if ye will turn to the Lord with full purpose of heart, and put your trust in him, and serve him with all diligence of mind, if ye do this, he will, according to his own will and pleasure, deliver you out of bondage.

I love the term "full purpose of heart." The gospel is not something we can go at half-heartedly. We have to turn to the Lord and do everything that he asks of us on a consistent basis. We must trust in him and know that he will do what is best for us.  Sometimes we feel like the Lord doesn't answer a prayer when we don't receive what we want, but in reality he is just placing us where we will learn the most, and become the best that we can be. The Lord's will is perfect, his love is perfect, and his plan for us is perfect. Trust in him. It's the best thing that we can do. 

Isaiah 55:8 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the Lord. 
9 For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.
Trust in the Lord and know that his plan is perfect.

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