We hare Vinagroons, they’re little scorpions, if they sting you, everything you eat tastes like vinegar for like a week. The first area I was walking around and jumped on one. My back is getting better. I do some stretches in the morning, and it’s starting to heal up.
Let me know when Jaxon’s baptism is, President Ahlander said that I might be able to call in for part of the baptism. So let me know.
Hey, I know you couldn’t email me last week because you didn’t have service on vacation. So I sent an email to everyone on my contact list. And guess what? I got two responses back? Abby Berrett and an old friend from a previous area. So, I would love to hear from other people!
The other day, I was stressing and wondering why, if our mission is the 3rd highest in baptisms in December, why haven’t I had a baptism in 11 months. I was talking to my AP about it. I was just wondering, am I doing something wrong? Because I’m trying my best. He said I’m not doing anything wrong, but that I should pray and as God. So I did. I started praying and pondering Joseph Smith’s trials because it mentions it in my Patriarchal Blessing, that all these things are for thy good and experience. And I was thinking, why would it mention this if I’m not meant to go through a decent amount of trials. So I started praying, and these words just came to me, and it’s happened a few times, where I just hear words, like the Spirit is actually speaking to me. And it is so amazing, and overwhelming. This time I wrote it down. And every time I read it, the spirit witnessed to me again and again that this was true.
The Savior knew he could send me. (over and over that thought came back to my mind) to those who would not accept the will of the Father and the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I knew you wouldn’t stop when the teaching stopped, and I sent you to be a witness for Me at the judgement day. That they rejected the Gospel. I sent a man I knew could love people, and who could work through hardship, rejection and trial over and over and over again and keep going; through mental pain, physical pain, and rejection. That you would keep working and try harder and harder. That you would continue to push forward to be a missionary. I knew I could send you to walk a path closer to the Savior's. To deal with hardship with faith. That you were strong enough to do it then, on a mission and after.
D&C 136:31 My people must be tried in all things, that they may be prepared to receive the glory that I have for them, even the glory of Zion; and he that will not bear chastisement is not worthy of my kingdom.
This more fully goes over what I had to go through, why He’s pushing me, why I’m going through these things, and how I got an answer to my prayer. This is not the first answer to my prayers, I’ve had lots over the course of my mission. Ya know, as a kid you always think it would be cool to have visions and to hear the Holy Ghost, and now looking back I realize I’ve had it lots of times.
I want to recall an experience I had with a companion who wasn’t trying. So this was my second transfer with him, and it would have been very easy to sleep in, as he did every morning. I remember I woke up a bit before my alarm clock and I’m like, I don’t want to wake up again, I don’t want to wake up again, I just want to sleep in. And I had a little bit of a dream before the alarm clock went off. And in this dream I was back in Texas and I was looking at the pool. I’m like, I wanna swim again. I walked up to my coach, I said, Coach, I wanna swim. He said, If you want to swim, go swim. I dove into the pool and I swam faster than I ever have, I swam my heart out! I woke up and the alarm went off. I realized, that’s not about swimming, it’s my mission. And Christ is the Coach, he’s saying I’m giving you the chance, don’t Cruise! Go, Swim, Work!!!
That made me look back to when I was feeling sick. I was thinking, let’s just go home. But as I went on I started to feel a little bit better. But I was thinking I kind of just want to go to bed. But it made me think of this swimming thing again! I’m like swimming in my mind, but I’m feeling done. And I’m like “Don’t take me out couch!” The Lord is our coach, and I am a missionary! That was an answer to a prayer. And I’ve worked hard since then, and I have not had a problem at all sleeping in.
One day I was reading a talk on successful missionaries, and the different types of missionaries there are. It talks about the consecrated missionary. I was kind of getting excited, wanted to get better, push myself. And that night, I seriously had like 14 dreams. I’d sleep, have an amazing dream about missionary work because I changed something, then I’d wake up. Go back to sleep, and it would happen again. By the morning I was so stoked! I was like bouncing off the walls, I was so excited to be a missionary. The Lord pumped me up to make a sacrifice. To give up a little bit more of my past to be a better missionary. Then I went to Sacrament meeting. I was reading about Christlike attributes, and I did the self evaluation. I got to the question, How frequently do you think of the atonement of Christ. I’m like, really, that’s not something that crosses my mind every day. that there’s some days that I go without even acknowledging that. I was just kind of thinking about that in my heard, I just wish there was like an alter for me to put my things on. my problems. And in my dream, I was thinking about putting my sins and my wants on the sacrificial alter for the Father’s will. As I was taking the sacrament, I realized the alter is up there. It’s being passed. And when you take the cup of water, you are taking upon you the Father’s will, and when I set the cup down, it’s like putting away something. So I challenged myself to put away something every time I partake of the sacrament. To put away on of those things I shouldn’t or I indulge in, more of the Natural Man and take upon me more of my Savior. I decided every time I think of those things, I’d think of the Savior’s atonement. And as a result, the sacrament became a whole lot more meaningful.