So we had a very good week! Alex's baptism is all set up and ready for action this Saturday at Noon. He was so awkward about setting everything up, you would have thought that he was a teenager or something!! Luckily his wife, Becky, was very proactive and held his hand through everything. She even called the people that he wanted there for talks and such, and sent out the invite on facebook for the service. We also had a SPECTACULAR lesson with Nou yesterday. Bishop Holmes came with his son and testified very very powerfully and promised some amazing blessings to her if she is to get baptized. She told us about a dream that she had had. Her Dad was dressed in white, calling her from the top of a staircase telling her to come and eat with him. She said she wanted to get there so badly but kept falling. Uh. Lehi's dream anyone? She is so solid and ready to be baptized... minus the fact that she hasn't been taught everything. With that in mind, her date has been pushed back to the 11th of April. I'll be there through pictures and updates, but of course it won't be the same.
And now... The hard part. I've been serving the Lord for the past 2 years, and now I have to try and summarize it in the next 5 or 6 sentences. What is there to say? I am a better man because of my mission. I am more like my savior than I have been at any time in any other part of my life, and it isn't because I'm any more special or qualified than anyone else. It's because I'm doing all of the small things. I haven't missed church in 2 years, not including the frozen pipes day in Wausau... I read my scriptures every day, I pray no less than 10 times a day, I repent, I learn, I come closer to God, I lather, I rinse, I repeat. I'm not doing anything that anybody else can't do (except speak Hmong maybe, but that isn't really a saving ordinance) and I don't have any more power than anyone else is allowed to have. I'm so happy for the lives that I've touched and I sincerely hope that they will continue to progress and be better, and I hope that just like them, I can continue to progress. I love you all so much, and I'll see you in a few!
Friday, April 3, 2015
This week there has really only been one thing on my mind, and it might surprise you what that is... THE TEMPLE!!! What. An. Experience. There was a moment while I was there that I received revelation for myself and the thought came into my mind "oh, so THIS is what it feels like to have my soul distilled upon by the dews of heaven." I couldn't have had a better time. It just reaffirmed to me the importance of NEVER NOT going to the temple. It has been about 22 months since last I went, and boy oh boy, did I need it. I'm always going to remember that experience, and I'll have pictures in, you know, approximately 10 days ;). And just to say it, letting you know, I am keeping focused on the work. I've said it before, I'll say it again, Elder Dobyns is keeping me very on top of it, and he has been a perfect last companion. I think it also helps that we have had so many exciting things to look forward to, that I haven't even needed to be excited for going home! The work progresses unhindered even by MY unhallowed hand... LOVE!!!
Describing your mission in a paragraph isn't possible. I don't believe that you would be able to fit it into a book, much less a small passage. I can't say that I changed lives, I can't say that I baptized hundreds, I can't say that I wore out my shoes, I don't know if I lived up to the names on my badge, I don't know if I will go back a different man, I don't know how I will retain everything I learned on my mission, I don't know what is next, I don't know who or when I'll marry, I can't say I know what jobs I want to pursue, hobbies I will lose myself in, or habits that I will form, I don't know what God wants me to do next, BUT I can say this: I am more converted now than I have been at any other point in my life. I know with more surety that the Book of Mormon changes lives, and that as one strives to live by the principles in that great book, they will not be the worse for doing so; On the contrary, they will find in their lives a stronger conviction to do that which is right in the sight of God. I can't say that I changed lives, but I know that I have had mine changed.