Sunday, November 11, 2012

A Miracle Happened This Week

Dear family,

I have heaps of thoughts and letters to respond to that I probably won’t be able to get finished in the short time that I have, but I will do my best to type fast! So, to be honest, I can’t think of anything really... for Christmas or my birthday. I’m pretty content... I don’t really need much. I guess come strawberry orange banana Crystal Light packets would be great and some Sponge Bob macaroni and cheese. That would be cool too. (It's pretty sad that’s all I can think of.) I don’t need much, but feel free to surprise me.

This week a miracle happened!!! WEEE GOT A CAR!!!! A tender mercy indeed, especially for Elder Loffhagen! We had a great day where we were able to teach a girl named Hinerangi and set her to be baptized on the 1st of December. We just knocked on her door and offered to teach her on her front lawn. Then, not even 10 minutes after, we got a call from the AP’s (Elder Barney) letting us know that we were going to get a car tomorrow. I was so happy. I said, "This would be such a sick joke if you were just kidding! Are you for serious?!" So yup, anyway, long story short, the Samoan elders in our zone crashed the car so now we get to drive it around everywhere! I was just starting to enjoy biking too, but I think I will be all right.

So let’s see—for your district meeting tonight, I actually do have something to throw in. I talked about this a lot in the last district meeting that I did. I will do my best to sum it up but I talked about Elder Bednar’s talk on personal conversion and focused on his analogy of our lamps and conversion oil (regarding the ten virgins). As missionaries everything we teach is to help people make and keep commitments and the biggest three are of course reading scriptures, praying, and going to church. Every day we BEG investigators to do those three things, because without those three things they cannot be truly converted to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Doing those three things can lighten the heaviest loads, bring hope to those in despair, and help brighten dark times. The thing is though, in order to help other people we first need to help ourselves! So a question you could ask everyone there is how much conversion oil do they put in their lamps? How often do they read their scriptures, how much work do they put into their prayers? and just how serious do they take the sacrament? (I mentioned that talk about the man who was "sleeping" when the water came his way). Anyway, without the spirit we can do NOTHING. This week I kinda experienced it. We had a baptism on Saturday—a boy named Shanil Kumar. It was a great program but it started at nine in the morning. So in a mad rush to make everything perfect we had to skip personal study. We still came back and did companion study and 12-week program training, but the whole day I could not tell what was wrong with me. I was super impatient in lessons, I had anxiety issues, and I was just angry throughout the day over nothing. That night I got in, planned, called the district, and then when we were reporting to the zone leaders Elder Bills asked me how my day was so I told him that it wasn't that great and what I had been feeling throughout the day. So he just asked why do you think that happened? Right away it hit me I DIDN'T READ!!!!! When you’re a missionary your conversion lamp gets a whole lot bigger and needs a whole lot more oil to power it. D&C 82:3 I strongly advise everyone to deepen their personal conversion including all the Priests and Laurels that are planning to go serve a mission, and ESPECIALLY any who are having second thoughts! I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

So yeah, some other cool things happened this week. I mentioned Shanil’s baptism a little already but I should tell you a little bit more. Baptisms are crazy. SOMETHING ALWAYS goes wrong. This time I was determined to get everything right. So the morning of we woke up at 5 in the morning to go fill and heat the font. Then we went to go run and exercise with Aj Houia who is starting to get a little fat and lazy.
J We got back at six thirty and we started to get ready. We got to the chapel at 8:15 and started to set up chairs and everything else. Then at 8:30 Shanil arrived with his dad so we went to go change into our whites. That's when I realized I forgot extra clothes.... so everything that gets wet stays wet which includes white shirt and top and bottom garments. So I [improvised]. Then everyone started coming in, including members and the Assistants and zone leaders. The spirit filled the room but I could tell Shanil was nervous!!! We said a prayer with him and did our best to help him feel better, but when we got in the water I realized that it was not heated! AT ALL!!! Whoops. It was a good program and even though Shanil was clinging onto my arm for dear life and kicked his feet like a mad man he felt a lot better after and I felt the spirit really strong!

Sorry. I would love to write more but I need to take the sisters home! I will respond to all ya’lls next week. Love you guys heaps. Be good and don’t forget to fill your lamps.

Elder Ward



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