Thursday, October 15, 2009

Week 6 ...already?

Holy cow, I can't believe that as of this coming Monday, I have 2 weeks and then I'm off to Paraguay!  That is so crazy.  I'm really excited to go!  I can't wait to get there.

It was pretty funny, last week we had chicken nuggets for lunch.  I about had a heart attack when I saw the menu before I walked in, and about had another one after I was done eating.  I ate 6 plates of those bad boys, probably about 45 chicken nuggets.  Some things never change I guess.  I gained 3 pounds that day haha, but I burned it all off at gym.

I think I need you to send me a few things.  I'm pretty sure I'll need my driving record?  I don't know.  If I do have a car there (which I will should I have certain assignments) I'll need my license and driving record.  How do I go about renewing my driver's licence if I'm...out of the country?  Haha.  Same thing with my debit card?  Could you also send me Dr. Stacey's address por favor so I can write to them and send them a picture or something?  Thanks a bunch, you guys help me out beyond belief.

I wish I could play fantasy football with you guys this season.  I'll show you how it's done when I get home!  Oh, and GO UNR!!

Tell Bryce I said congrats on the appointment to start his papers!!  I don't have time today, but I will make it a point to write him before I leave the MTC.

Mom, I love how you write me "I decided to paint" something.  I could be wrong, but with my experience, I would think that should say "I decided to have DAD paint something" hahah.  No, I'm teasing, you always help him out and paint too.  Can't wait to see what it looks like.

I got to give another blessing 2 nights ago.  One of our Elders was having a rough time and just asked for some extra help, so I gave him a blessing with Elder Short there too.  It's such a great privilege to be able to use the priesthood and have the Lord speak through me to bless somebody else's life.

Since when are you guys going to Colorado??  What the honkeytonk is in Colorado?  You'd better not be going snowboarding without me, I'll fly over there to go with you.  Really though, what's in Colorado?  How come you're taking the trip there?  You should get started on that Old Testament study while you're there in your down time.  If I can study for 3 hours a day as busy as I am here, I know you can too Papa Bear!

Yesterday we got to be host missionaries!  Host missionaries are the ones that are waiting by the curb to help the newly arriving missionaries with their bags and get them all checked in and situated and everything.  It was so much fun!  What's even cooler though is Elder Short's twin came in yesterday and he got to host him!  They are identical, but I can easily tell them apart.  It's kind of easy when I spend basically every minute of my day with him there lol.  That was neat though, they're exactly the same.

We had an awesome devotional about the Book of Mormon.  It was from Elder David Evans of the First Quorum of the 70 (which means he's got some authority haha).  He talked about the Book of Mormon and how to use it effectively in our lessons.  Usually what happens is us missionaries leave our investigators with some random chapter from the Book of Mormon that we like to read for next time we come back.  He pointed out that this wasn't how we gained our testimonies of the Book of Mormon, how is an investigator supposed to gain a testimony that way?  We should start them from the beginning, just like the way we started, and point out to them the key parts of the chapters we assign.  It makes sense.  He also said that in our lessons, we should be using almost all Book of Mormon scriptures.  I think sometimes missionaries get scared because people we teach don't yet believe in the Book of Mormon so we think we have to use Bible scriptures to teach them or something they believe.  But it makes sense to use the Book of Mormon most - we're not here to teach them about a Bible they already believe in.  The Book of Mormon is the word of God, and that is never something we should be afraid to share.

I don't have much more to say this week, because we're just getting ready to go.  But we did do an awesome activity in class where we shared our testimonies and Hermano Soelberg would stop us in the middle to ask us questions about why we believe that or how we know it or what it really means to us.  After that, I think I wrote the most inspired testimoney I've ever given or written.  I want to share it with you all.

I know that Jesus Christ lives.  He is, as we speak right now, watching over us, looking for ways to help and bless us.  I know that He is my Savior and is the only way for me to return to live with God in an eternal family.  He died for me.  He bled for my sins, my sorrows, my mistakes, my pains.  I know this because Heavenly Father has seen fit to make it known unto me in the most powerful way that I cannot explain.  I know God is real.  I know I am His son, and He is looking down on me, and that he loves me more than I could ever hope to understand in this life.  I know that the Plan of Salvation is reality.  It teaches us of where we came from, why we're here, and where we're going.  The Gospel of Jesus christ is how we get there.  I know it because even as I'm writing this, I feel it in my heart and in my sould that it is true.  The Holy Ghost is communitcating to my soul, spirit to spirit, giving me true knowledge and intelligence.  I know that God answers prayers.  He answers them in many and multiple ways.  All we must do is recognize them.  God wants dearly to answer our prayers, and He makes them known to us so long as we are looking for them.  I knwo that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God.  I know that he saw God and Jesus Christ in that grove of trees exactly as he said he did.  He restored the ordinances of salvation and the doctrines of Jesus Christ back to the earth for the last time so that we may know the truth and share it with the world.  I know the Book of Mormon is true and is the word of the Lord.  I know it because the Spirit has testified it to me in the exact, simple, powerful way the scriptures say it does.  I feel peace, at ease, ahppy, and unexplainably right about the Book of Mormon when the Spirit touches my heart.  I am not mislead by strong emotions or desires, I know that I feel something beyond emotion.  I can't explain what it is, but I know it when I feel it and recognize it as truth coming into my soul.  The Gospel of Jesus Christ is real.  It is really the word of God and salvation.  I'm thankful for this blessing of knowledge I've been blessed with.  I don't know how I know, but I know.  There is no guesswork.  I know it.  And I'm thankful for it.  My heart is full with joy in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  This Gospel is so incredible, as is the fact that I and everyone else can know the truth of it.  What better way to know the truth than a direct confirmation from the Spirit of God?  Nobody has to take my or anybody else's word for it, they can know for themselves.  That's the beauty of this work.  I leave with you all my witness that I know what I have said is frankly and completely true, in the solemn name of our Savior Jesus Christ, amen.

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