Monday, August 3, 2009

The healing waters of the Gospel

Hey everyone,
Well, things are pretty swell here in North Carolina. This last week has been a little annoying, because we weren't able to do much finding. We had a bunch of good teaching appointments and did things that needed to be done, but I'm glad it's over. We finally moved into our new trailer. It is pretty much the missionary mansion. I feel bad - there's a family in our ward that has 4 kids and they live in a smaller trailer than we do. Traditionally missionaries have lived on the Island. This is the first time that missionaries have lived off, so it will be the first time the efforts have been focused there. It's a good thing. There is a lot of work that can be done here.

So about the second day that we moved into our trailer I saw a mouse ran across the counter and scamper into one of the holes in the burners. So me and Elder Stewart turned all of the burners on high and turned the oven on broil to see if we could teach him a lesson. Ha ha ha, it was really, really hot in there. It didn't do the trick, and then he had the nerve that night to nibble on some of my bread. So the next day we got some mouse traps from Billy's, and rid ourselves of the pest. Besides the renegade mouse, it's a super-nice trailer that will work well for us.

We've been trying to work with the ward as much as we can, and yesterday we put on a fireside. We taught about Preach My Gospel, and how they as members can apply it to their own lives. It turned out to be pretty good, I hope they got a lot out of it! PMG is a great resource for learning how to do missionary work, I must say. I didn't appreciate how good it is until I got out here. I would exhort anyone reading this to make a point of studying out of it (and not just Chapter 3) and trying to apply it to your own life.

I had a unique North Carolina experience this week. We were invited to a "pig pickin's", where a whole pig is barbecued, East Carolina style (which has a vinegar taste to it). It was pretty good. I'm pretty lucky to have it 3 weeks out, some missionaries don't have one their entire mission. I'm sure Dad would have loved it. Basically, these people love their food, and love to feed it to you. I am going to put on a huge amount of weight if I am not more careful.

We didn't do a lot of finding this week, but we did have one really good new investigator. We ran into a lady named Raisa when we were on the Island. She is an immigrant from Ukraine, and has been in the U.S. for about 7 years. She loves reading and has a lot of questions. She is pretty solid, she has recognized God's hand in her life and understands what we teach her. She's supposed to come to church next Sunday, and I am really excited for that. She went to the Orthodox church in Ukraine, and looked for a church to go to when she came here. She was in the LDS church for some activity and said that she felt like she was Mormon inside. So we will see how things go, we are trying to get a Ukrainian Book of Mormon for her.

I was thinking last night before the fireside about the Gospel. We showed a video clip that had a song about the "healing waters" of the Gospel, and it really touched me. That's what the Gospel is. We all have some shortcoming or affliction somewhere in our lives. It might be our fault, or it might not be. But living the Gospel brings healing into our lives, and sharing the Gospel helps others experience that same healing power. I am so grateful for it and for the difference it has made in my life, for the healing that it has brought to me. I know that we can all feel it as we live the Gospel principles and strive to become more like Christ...

I did forget to mention that I played the banjo at the 24th celebration. We were in Ward Council and they said that they wanted someone to play the banjo. They then asked if anyone even knew how to play it anyways, so I was truthful and fessed up. It was kind of fun to play...Dad, hope you feel better. Tough luck with the bike. Can't say I'm too surprised though, you are a magnet for accidents.

I am glad to hear about Andrew, and thanks for sharing Brother Bott's words of wisdom. Keep them coming. It still hasn't been too hot, I will let you know if that changes. It helps that there's a nice little sea breeze. I know that this church is true, and am very grateful to be out here. Keep me updated on what goes on. If there's anything I forgot to tell you about, just remind me and I'll be sure to mention it in my next letter. I love you all!

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