Sunday, June 22, 2014

"To their eternal credit, I will be forever grateful for them."

Hey Hey Hey.  Have I mentioned that I miss you guys like crazy? I loved reading your emails today. I just love hearing about the exciting events that are taking place back in the Promised Land. It truly amazes me how much things are changing. I'm going to be so out of the loop when my sister is living elsewhere and my brother is a junior in high school.  I'll return home with my rice belly and not know what to do with my life. Gotta love the future. Super exciting. It was a jam-packed week.  The cooking situation here is quite exciting. I think Heavenly Father had canned and freezer foods created for his missionaries, because that's what we eat everyday for lunch haha. Luckily, we have awesome members who feed us dinner nearly every night so we're surviving.

I'll start with an experience I had at the temple this last week. Don't you just love the temple? I sure do.  I could go everyday and just ponder for hours. Last Tuesday I was doing just that. I decided to take a second and ponder about numerous things that would be taking place in the future (after my mission).  I opened up the scriptures to see if I could find out the Lord's will for me. These are the verses I came across:

"Therefore, take ye no thought for the morrow...For your Father, who is in heaven, knoweth that you have need of all these things.
Therefore, let the morrow take thought for the things of itself."

Chastised. Ouch. Not the time to be thinking about the future. Focus on the work and everything will work out. Heavenly Father has a plan.

I gotta tell you about my boy King. He's the man. Seriously, he's so prepared. We visited him a couple times this past week and he is just embracing the gospel. He told us of an amazing experience he had while pondering upon the messages he had shared. It was Tuesday, June 17 at 1am in the morning. As he sat on a bench outside his house thought and prayed about what he needed to do. All of the sudden, a newspaper fly out of no where and landed on his foot. He grabbed the newspaper and examined the cover. He saw the date. Tuesday, June 17. The day’s newspapers are usually delivered for another 3-4 hours and yet, there it was, in his hand. It was only a single paper and he began to read. He came across the horoscopes and decided to read his. This is a rough translation of what it said, "What you are doing right now will testify to you of truth. It will bring peace and happiness to your life." Holy Crap. Can an answer to a prayer be clearer than that? He was amazed at the answer he received. I was amazed at the answer he received. It was just amazing. He's taken that answer and is applying it.  He's reading the Book of Mormon, praying and coming to church. This is a great example of what one has to do in order to receive answers to prayers. If we hope to receive such an answer, we have to be completely set upon doing whatever that Lord asks us to do. We have to give up our own desires and our own wants and completely trust that the Lord will give us exactly what we need. If we don't have the conviction to act before, the answer will never come. The power of prayer. Read about it in the Bible Dictionary. We truly underestimate the power of prayer. 

Had a leadership training this week. It was amazing. It was the final training we will be receiving from President Stucki. Super sad, but super uplifting. It was a whole day thing.  Each of the zone leaders gave a segment about an aspect of Missionary Work. We talked about the Book of Mormon. It went well.  Elder Diamse and I also sang a musical number with our two district leaders. It went well. We sang an acapella version of I Need Thee Every Hour. I sure love singing. I saw elder Atoigue and all my buddies there. I love those guys. Elder Atoigue told me a story about one of the members in my previous area. Do you remember Hector? After years of inactivity, he came back to church while I was there. Remember? He's the man. A couple days before the training Elder Atoigue asked him, "Hector, what finally made you come back to church after all those years?" This was his response: "It's all because of two missionaries. I had been visited by countless missionaries in the past and had never wanted to come back. Then two missionaries came by (Elder Carlson and I). There was something different about those two. When they visited me, it made me want to come back to church. To their eternal credit, I will be forever grateful for them." Probably the best compliment I have ever received on my mission. I just love Hector and love that he's happy in the church. The joys of missionary work. 

We sang in the ward choir this week! It was awesome. We sang "Battle Hymn of the Republic." It was great. Not quite as good as the Cabar choir, but I guess it was alright. They recruited us when they realized they only had 2 men. Don't worry, we added some testosterone to the choir.

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