I keep forgetting to tell you this: don't expect me home before. Apparently if you spend less than 6 weeks in the MTC, your 18 months don't start counting until you get out to the field. What a pleasant surprise!
As a follow up from last week's email, my Dad did some research to find that a black mustard seed is incredibly small, but can grow into a 15 foot tall tree, producing a whole bunch of more mustard seeds, giving it infinite potential. I also found this quote in Jesus the Christ, Chapter 24, under the heading "Healing of a Youthful Demonic", "The comparison between effective faith and a grain of mustard seed is one of quality rather than of quantity; it connotes living, virile faith, like unto the seed, however small, from which a great plant may spring, in contrast with a lifeless, artificial imitation, however prominent or demonstrative." So I'm satisfied with that line of research. I'll revisit faith soon I'm sure.
How about conference! What a good time! I hope everyone was listening to Elder Oaks' talk on member missionary work! I would love to hear each one of you tell me about your missionary efforts! They really uplift my soul! I also loved that talk about "To whom shall you go?" by Elder Ballard. Truly, the restored gospel of Jesus Christ is upon the earth in this church.
So, I have some requests for adventures! A man literally called me and Hermana Whittingham over to talk to him because he recognized us. We talked about conference, I bore testimony, and we left him with a card with the address of the church. Once we were out of earshot, Hermana Whittingham started laughing because he had peed his pants during the conversation! Folks, I had no idea! I am so oblivious! But sure enough, there was the puddle! What is going on here?
We also were out at 9 when we shouldn't have been because I applied the wrong principle(talk to everyone) at the wrong time(, when we were rushing back to an investigator's apartment for a paper I accidentally left), and got caught talking to someone for too long in the street. This woman was really mean to us! She took the Spirit away, and it was really hard to plan that night. Curfew is important. I need to work on that.
Okay, now for some positives! Beverly came to the last session of General Conference! Hooray! There were some great messages for her, and she told us that she was going to share the Book of Mormon with her 18 year old son! That will be wonderful! I'm not sure whether she understood that the men who spoke were apostles of God, but she definitely felt the truth of their teachings. I love the gospel! I am so blessed!
I went on my first exchanges this week! I spent 24 hours in an English area with Sister Hansen! It was tough! I'm so glad I'm a Spanish speaking missionary! We did one member inspire with a really nice family and one lesson with an investigator where we really uncovered her needs. I hope that she can get the answers she's seeking. I know that she will if she just does the things we're commanded: Church attendance, Pray sincerely with real intent, and Read the scriptures! Spiritual CPR!
I don't feel like there's anything worth a long paragraph here. We had a lot of appointments fall through this week. The other missionaries say it's pretty normal, but I wish it wasn't.
I love studying and sharing the gospel! I don't love Bible bashing! I never knew that Bible bashers would look and sound so nice. It takes a real sensitivity to the Spirit to recognize that you need to get out of a conversation about the Bible. Some love to say that you can't add to the Bible, but one man said that the Book of Mormon doesn't teach the same thing as the Bible. We believe the Bible to be the word of God, as far as it is translated correctly. I need to say that last part more often. The Bible was perfect, and the Book of Mormon is perfect. Please world, open up your hearts to the Book of Mormon! To all of my readers: Please, read the Book of Mormon every day! The promises are real! You can know of it's truth for yourself!
Thanks Danielle for the sweet letter! Snail mail is the coolest!
Love you all!
P.S. The photo of the shower is to show how short it is, hits my shoulder!