Monday, February 13, 2012

Oh...the Things That Happen...

Oh the things that happen...

So, it appears that I'll be an uncle for the 22nd time this year. Congratulations to my sister and bro-in-law, Angel and Jared! Yes, for everyone who has their mouths wide open and who didn't know that my family was that large always remember that my family is like a family of rabbits. I'll let you take that thought from there.

SO! This has been quite an eventful and fun/crazy/cool week. I've been able to experience my first of several things. My first Mission Conference (where all the missionaries in this mission get together and get taught certain things in order to improve and so on and so forth (in this case it was half the mission)) occurred Tuesday and it was pretty darn good. I was able to see several of my MTC district members and my mission pres that day so it was pretty good. That day I also went to Olive Garden for the first time in my life. That place is gooood. I had the all-you-can-eat soup, salad and breadsticks deal. like i said, that place is gooood. It was also the beginning of my first exchange. I was able to exchange with Elder Carpenter, one of my Zone Leaders and it went really really well. We taught an investigator the Plan of Salvation and committed them to baptism. The mission is the greatest thing ever. 

As Elder Carpenter and I were talking he told me that he knows a missionary who is serving in the Montana Billings Mission. An Elder Jamsa who many of yall know and who I have had the pleasure of going on splits with. Small world. Anyway let me move on. THURSDAY WAS THE GREATEST DAY EVER! As I've probably mentioned before, we've been teaching the Wagner family and they are AWESOME. A couple weeks ago we committed them to baptism and this past week we set a date! Yeah...I'm super stoked. It's so great to see a family progress and come closer to their Savior. The mission is the most amazing thing ever.
Hey! and we actually had a little bit of snow here. My comp was going crazy (he's from Utah and loves snow) and insisted we do some tracting during the snow flurries. yippee......just kidding it wasn't that bad. Tracting in a "snow storm" actually helps people to be nice to us and let us in their home. Yesterday was pretty sweet. We ran tracted into a guy named Frank and he is super super excited about the Book of Mormon. We gave him a copy, explained what it was and so on, then committed him to baptism...pretty much on his doorstep....yeah....super freaking amazing. We're meeting with him Thursday evening.

I'm loving my mission though. The work is moving forward and I'm loving the fact that I'm part of it.

This past week I've kept coming across this same scripture. I first heard it in mission conference, then I saw it in my personal studies, and now it seems to be everywhere so i'll share it. There are plenty of times in our life where we may feel alone, forgotten, overworked, depressed, seem to be pushed to the limit, and sometimes we may yell at the heavens, "Why are You doing this to me?" There is NOTHING that happens to us that is NOT for a good reason. "These experiences will be for your good." We have great experiences in life and we have horrible experiences in life. Because we are experiencing hardship doesn't mean we're doing anything wrong. So, for those times you feel forgotten or perhaps even despised or hated, remember these words:
"Can a woman forget her sucking child, that she should not have compassion on the son of her womb? yea, they may forget, yet will I not forget thee. Behold, I have graven thee upon the palms of my hands"  Isaiah 49: 15-16.

Are we not loved? Are we forgotten? I testify that we are NEVER alone. We are NEVER forgotten. He has the reminders on His hands and on His feet. Do we have control of what happens to us? Not always...but we ALWAYS have control of how we react. Never rebel against God. Always remember that there is ALWAYS a higher purpose to every hardship and experience. When the temptation comes to be angry with your Father or with your Elder Brother for something you are experiencing, "Be still, and know that I am God." 

Have an eternal perspective throughout this life and you will be exalted on high. You will be greeted by our Savior and you will be greeted by our Father and will be enveloped in their embrace forever more.

I know this is His church and His Gospel. I know the He is real and He loves us. He knows us better than we know ourselves. I testify and witness that these things ARE TRUE. In His sacred name, even Jesus Christ. Amen.

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