Meine liebe starke Familie,
Meine Gute! Warum werde ich immer älter. Ich bin gestern hier her gekommen und jetzt ist die Hefte vorbei! On thursday of this week, July 24th, I will have been on my mission for a year. That is half of two years just in case the math is hard for you. It is a little hard for me because I just can't believe that half of my mission is over, it really doesn't seem like it has been a year yet. Maybe this email is a little cheesy, but I am forever grateful for this opportunity I have had to be serving a mission for the Lord. I have learned so much in this past year and I hope that I can learn just as much in the next year as I have in the past one. I have developed spiritually, mentally, and physically here in Germany. I would like to share some of the things that I have learned in the past year:
- Love. Love is the most important commandment which God has given us. Liebe. Liebe liebe Liebe. I have loved all of my investigators, all of my areas, all of the members of the different branches and wards I have served in. If I learn nothing else on my mission, love would be the only thing I would like to take away with me. Love is what makes the world go round. It is the love of God and Jesus Christ that enables us to obtain forgiveness from our sins and to return to live with them again.
- Patience. Going hand in hand with love, as we are patient with investigators, and just as important, patient with ourselves, love can be magnified, and everyone benefits in the end. Sometimes this is one of the hardest things to do. Especialy to be patient with yourself, but it makes the difference.
- Prayer. This is the tool which we use to know what our Heavenly Father wants us to do. He promises us that if we ask, he will give it to us. Sometimes we forget to use this simple promise the Lord has given us. If we don't ask for it, we won't receive, but as soon as we open that door and come unto him, he will always show us the way. He will send his love and answer our prayers. We also show our humility as we pray to the Lord and ask for forgiveness, ask for help, and thank Him for the success we have received at his hand.
- Always work with your companion in unity.
- How to play volleyball and soccer a little better.
- Whenever you get a little down, enjoy some eis:)
- A powerful and spiritual personal and companionship study makes the difference for the day.
- The Book of Mormon has the power to change people lives.
- Setting Goals is the way we set the desires of our hearts into fulfillment.
- German is the most beautiful language in the entire world.
- Germany is the best in the world at soccer.
- Germany is the greatest country in the world and Bayern(Bulvaria) has the proudest, awesomest, most wonderful culture in the world. SERVUS! #lederhosen
There are many other things I have learned on my mission... I just could go on forever.
Sad story this week. We have been working with this less active member whose wife isn't a member of the church. He was seriously such an amazing man, He was in the army, so he would always get us good american products such as peanut butter and reeses. However, a couple of weeks ago he went into the hospital with gall stones and on tuesday he died from a liver infection. We went to visit him in the hospital and gave him a blessing, but on tuesday morning, his wife called us balling and said that her husband had died and that he would like a service done by his church. She doesn't really know too much about our church, but we were able to organize a little funeral service and called our Bishop to come and direct it. So, we cancelled our appointments for the day and organized a service for him that night. I played the piano and we sang Abide with Me and Nearer My God to Ther. Our Bishop gave a beautiful talk that brought the spirit to the room. Her family was all there, and they aren't members if the church so it was a really good experience for them. It was a sad day, but I think this has really opened his wife's heart to learning more about the gospel. I am just so sad that he never made it to church as we were meeting with him.
With our investigator who moved last week, we haven't been able to get a hold of him all week. His phone just goes straight to voice mail... ugghhh... why... but, we still had two investigators in church on sunday who are progressing towards baptism. Also, the sisters in our area had a baptism on saturday! It was beautiful :) I performed a musical number and played the piano for it. On sunday, we stood in the circle and gave him the holy ghost. When he received the holy ghost you could see the biggest light and happiness in his eyes. You could truly see a change within him as he recieved the baptism by fire. It was a true testimony building experience for me to see him receive the holy ghost. Sadly, he is moving to another city on thursday :( but, he was able to get baptized before he left. I think that seems to happen alot in our ward's history. Everyone who gets baptized is just temporarily here and then moves away. Well, we are still building God's kingdom, right?
So, one investigator, the one from South Africa is doing wonderfully. He opened up to us like never before this week and although we have already invited himto baptism countless times, on sunday, he told Sister Diethelm that he thinks he could be ready by the middle of August. Happy day!!!!
Well Familie, das ist alles was ich zu sagen habe, aber ich will einfach mein Zeugniss mit euch lassen. Ich weiß, dass diese kirche wahr ist. Ich weiß, dass Jesus Christus uns liebt. ich weiß, dass durch ihn können wir rein werden und zu ihm zurückkehren.
Ich liebe euch!