This week was by far the best of my mission. I almost can’t even begin to describe exactly why for you all, but I’ll try my best. 🙂
Tuesday we had English (we’ve had over 100 people consistently, which is crazy!) and then had a lesson that night with Violeta, a less active member. It started off well, then took a strange turn and she was crying and worrying over one of her sons and his bad behaviour. I had the impression to talk with her about family prayer. I told her what it was and what they could do. We challenged her to have family prayer together every night. We had one there with them that night before we left, and the Spirit was so strong. I was so grateful for that prompting. She told us that after the prayer she felt so good and that she was so grateful that we came to visit her. She has become such a dear friend and I love her and her family so much.
Thursday was Zone Conference. I loved it so much. Elder Kearon had requested that we study and sing before he talked with us. Before he started, he had all the Zone Leaders and Sister Training Leaders come into a room so he could meet us. He shook all of our hands and then just looked at us, and with tears in his eyes said, “Thank you. Thank you. You are glorious. Such a glorious sight.” You could feel the Spirit so powerfully and tangibly in that room. During the conference, he was amazing. I can’t even write everything we talked about but I think my favorite thing was how he taught us. He was so real, open, and honest. He didn’t talk to us, he talked with us. He pulled answers from us. And he taught so powerfully by the Spirit and let the Spirit lead him. I’ll give you some one liners from him:
– It’s one thing to have moments where you receive revelation. It’s another thing to act on those revelations you received.
– Be happy with progress. But, for goodness sake, don’t be satisfied!
– There is a blessing associated with every rule and commandment.
– We do well with resistance. Resistance gives us strength.
– Don’t reach for comfort. Reach through resistance to a higher, more joyful life.
– We are comfort givers, not comfort receivers.
– If you drift into the day, you are going to drift through it.
– I believe that your tears, after the lights are out, are counted.
– Certain kinds of our weaknesses are for our own protection.
– When you have a good thought or a prompting, just act on it. It doesn’t matter what it is, just act. You will never regret it.
– When conversion takes place, it is through the power of the Spirit.
– Hold onto your identity! Be yourself.
– We need to jump out of the boat (referencing Peter).
– Don’t let your past dictate your future.
– We need to have an absolute commitment that we are going to hang tight in the face of adversity, and we rejoice when opposition comes.
– “No missionary ever died of hard work.” – Elder Ballard
– . . .Think of Him and it will sober you and strengthen you.
My favorite parts came at the end of both zone conference and mlc. At the end of zone conference, he bore his testimony. He said, “I know that Joseph is a prophet. And I know that Thomas is a prophet. You know he’s finding it hard to walk these days. But he does. And Boyd. He is on oxygen. These men are wearing out their lives in service of the Saviour. Wear out your life in the service of the Saviour, because there is no better way to live.” I LOVE THAT. I want to wear out my life in His service. That will be a wonderful challenge and blessing.
At the end of MLC, he showed us a Mormon Message for Youth, called “Sanctify Yourselves.” It’s Elder Holland talking while the story he tells is acted out. It is powerful. We were all in tears at the end. The Spirit during the entire MLC was incredible. We prayed eight times together. Opening and closing and then six individual prayers offered. It was amazing. I could just feel revelation and inspiration coming and the Spirit with us all. It was one of the most memorable and tangible feelings. I will never forget it. At the end, we sang “I Know that My Redeemer Lives.” I was leading and so I was able to see what Elder Kearon did. He was right next to me, and when we all started to sing, he choked up, and then just closed his eyes and listened to us. It almost made me cry! During the last verse, he sang again with us. I can’t describe how I felt during that song. I don’t really have adequate words for it. I love being a missionary. We are powerful. Our prayers, missionary or not, are powerful. And they can bring down the powers of heaven if we sanctify ourselves. I love this work. I know that the Lord has incredible blessings and miracles in hand for Romania and all of us.
Love you all so so much,
P.S. Go watch “Sanctify Yourselves”!! And the new bible video about peter walking on water. I love it. I love how Jesus acts when Peter walks out and gets discouraged. And then when he catches his arm and pulls him up. I had never thought of that! But in this video, the Lord pulls him up. And then when he says “Wherefore didst thou doubt?” he doesn’t sound mad or annoyed. He says it with so much love and understanding. I love it. And all of you!