Thursday, May 30, 2013

Week 56- The ominous moment

Well, the Ominous Moment has arrived... Transfer Outlines are in and some Leadership Calls have already been made and we're awaiting transfer calls tonight! Then, after Thursday's transfer meeting, all bets will be in and we'll know who's staying in D.C. South and who's going to the new Richmond mission !
Sorry I couldn't email yesterday, We played Ultimate Frizbee with the ward, then everything was closed for Memorial day! Kinda stunk.
Ultimate was way fun! It was the first time I've played on my mission, so I had a total blast! It felt soooo good to get out and run and just have fun with it all!
This week was crazy! I spent 2 days straight on exchanges, I almost felt like I had to relearn my area when I got back! ... not really, but it was cool. On the first exchange, I got to give my first baptismal interview. L. S. got baptized last weekend in the Warrenton 2nd ward, and I got to do the interview. I'm not sure if I was more worried or if she was! haha investigators get VERY nervous for the baptismal interview, but it's not that bad at all. Basically, it's just an opportunity for them to share their new testimonies of Christ and His restored gospel to us and for us to see that they're not just getting baptized to get baptized and that they've really let Christ into their life. It was a great experience. It was a great experience and the spirit was very strong as she shared her conversion experience. She was sooo prepared. it's amazing to see people like her who the Lord just sets in our way because they are READY to hear the gospel.
We did a LOT of tracting this week. All of the people we meet with seemed to be out of town, so we knocked! We had some funny experiences, some weird ones, and some great ones. I'm still trying to decide how I feel about tracting... haha I LOVE meeting new people, but I still get butterflies every time when we're first starting.
The investigators that were in town are doing very well though! They keep commitments better than any teaching pool I've ever had and they're great! We have some great less active people we're working with, too and they're all progressing beautifully, too. It's been an awesome transfer. Elder P. and I love teaching together, and thus are very effective at helping people gain stronger testimonies of Christ.
I wanted to just share one small thing real quick. Naaman. He was a war captain in the Old Testament. He was a tough guy and very capable when it came to battle. He had one problem though. He had leprosy. It was very hard for him because he'd always been a leader in battle, but suddenly couldn't with his condition. This poor guy was falling apart. He eventually heard of someone who might be able to help him though: the Prophet of Israel, Elisha. So, he gets his army and goes to get healed by the prophet, and Elisha sends a servant to meet him and the servant says: "Wash in the river Jordan 7 times and you will be healed." Naaman was appalled. The Jordan was the filthiest river in the country! Why couldn't the prophet just heal him? Couldn't Elisha at least speak to him himself? It was simply insulting! Naaman resolved not to do it.... Until one of his servants said: "hey! If the Lord had asked you to do some great thing, wouldn't you have done it? How about now? He said something soooo simple! Just wash and you'll be healed." So, Naaman humbles himself and washes.
Lets jump to someone else. Nephi. He and his brothers are asked to get the brass plates from Laban, and after 2 failed attempts (both of which also included attempts on their life) the Lord guides Nephi of where to go. Nephi eventually finds a man wasted and passed out on the ground. It's Laban. The Lord instructs Nephi to kill Laban. Nephie really struggled with that. He'd never killed anyone before. He didn't want to start now. Didn't the Lord always tell us not to murder? Nephi was so young! But the Lord asked him to do it and he got up the courage to obey.
Imagine now that these two men were switched. Naaman is trying to get the brass plates and the Lord tells him to kill Laban. DONE! I'm a war captain! I do this all the time! As long as the Lord tells me to, it's done. Imagine Nephi now: "wash and be clean" Nephi would do cannonballs into the Jordan! That's just how Nephi was. I'm sure if these two men met on the other side of the veil, they would both ask: "Why couldn't I have your trials? they would be so easy!" Easy isn't the way the Lord intends us to grow, however. We often sit looking at our friends lives and thinking "man, if I had their problems, I would be set! I could endure to the end so easily!" But we don't realize that they think the same about us. The Lord fits our trials to us because He knows what will help us grow the way we need to to progress eternally. Neal A Maxwell once said: "We see ourselves in terms of yesterday and today, but God sees us in terms of forever." We must learn to see in those terms as well, and realize that our trials are what shape us into that forever that our Father sees in us. We need only trust Him and His Only Begotten Son to know that everything will be okay and that through our trials, we will be made into what the Lord needs us to be.
Well, until next week! Hold your breaths! Because this is the big one! The suspense is sooooo intense out here! The Transfer meeting this Thursday determines it all!!! Who goes to which mission? Find out next week…..Love you all!
-Elder Hodgson

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