Monday, June 3, 2013

Another Good Week Here in Poland


Exchange in Gdansk

Polish pastry

Storm rolling in

Hey hey hey family! Wow. Another week is come and gone already. How does this happen so fast? Anyway, it's been a really good week here in Poland. We may not have seen the best numbers ever, but we are enjoying the time we're spending and doing some great work. Hannah-bear, we gave out 3 copies of the Book of Mormon this week. I know, a little low, but we are hoping to have some more success this next week.
First off, I need to tell Dad that I have now officially tried Vegemite! I can't remember if I ever told him that before. It was actually a few weeks ago, when I went on exchange to Gdańsk. Elder Ż, who is from Australia, served up there and left some behind, so I got to try it. It's some interesting stuff. That's about all I have to say about it too. 
Secondly, good to know about the suit and the backpack. I think I'll buy a suit for my year mark.
A principle I learned this week is the importance of love in this work. Elder Wilson and I, during our weekly planning, took a moment and simply talked about how we feel the work is going and how we are doing as missionaries. We both agreed that something was missing, but we couldn't quite put a finger on it. Eventually, we came to the conclusion that our motives were just a little bit skewed. We both have a love for the Lord and we are striving to serve Him, but that wasn't our main reason behind striving to become master planners, teachers, and finders. Our natural man had gotten the better of us a little bit. We realized that we had wanted acclaim for how good our Polish was, for how well we did everything. It may not have been our main motive, but it was still there. We then realized that God wants none of that recognition. everything He does for us is purely out of love. Even in creating the Plan of Salvation and the Earth, everything was purely because He loves us. Acclaim of man, fame, none of it had anything to do with it. I realized that I've got a long way to go in loving the people among whom I serve. I realize now more than ever just how deep the sin of pride runs. I've got a lot to overcome and work to do. I'm so grateful for the atonement in my life and that I can overcome human attributes like this. I now realize even more why Mormon exhorted us to pray for Charity with all energy of heart. If charity can become our motive as missionaries, we will be so much more powerful as missionaries. And we won't be doing it to look good in someone else's eyes, but because we love God and it is Him whom we strive to serve. I'm so prideful, and have so much work to do, but I'm grateful that God doesn't give up on us.
Standing in the spot where President Kimball dedicated Poland for missionary work
Mission leadership council
The Mission Leadership Council was incredible. I was so grateful to be there, to learn from President and Sister Nielson one last time, and to see the spot where President Kimball dedicated Poland for missionary work. It's a special place. The Spirit was strong there, and it was a very refreshing moment. I have a story from earlier that day as well. Our train into Warsaw was running late, and because of it, we thought we were going to be late to the meeting. The Assistants were supposed to pick us up at the train station, but because they had a schedule also and wanted to get the meeting going on time, they had to leave us to take a taxi. Well, I was a bit grumpy about that. I shouldn't have been, but I was. It turned out, the Lord was in all of it, as He always is. The taxi driver was a really nice guy, and as soon as we started talking, we were able to bring up the gospel. Nothing life changing happened, but we were able to leave him a pass-along card and introduce him to the gospel. I'm such a proud little sucker, but the Lord does a good job of humbling me and showing me that I can be a great tool in His hands if I just trust Him. We also got to the meeting on time, which was a relief. No one likes being late.
We also helped the Kageles move this week. We spent a lot of Wednesday helping them move boxes, furniture, and such over to their new house. They're simply moving from one side of Bydgoszcz to the other, nothing super major. Well, a move is always major, but it's not like they're moving to a whole new country or something wild. Anyway, it felt nice to get into some normal clothes for a while and to do some physical labor. I miss that sometimes. I will admit though, I felt so weird in jeans and a t-shirt. I felt like I needed to put a tie or something on the whole time. That'll be a weird adjustment when I get home, but that's still over a year away. I'm not worrying about that yet. The Kageles also fed us and gave us root beer floats. Root beer is like liquid gold in Poland.
Helping the Kageles move
Enjoying root beer floats.
Grandma Fernie, I'm glad life is good and things are going well. I'm glad you like the pottery too! Tell James hi for me and keep him out of trouble.
Hannah, for dinner last night we had pasta with veggies, tuna, a special sauce we bought, and cheese. It was super good. I haven't received my one-year package yet, but I hope to get it soon! I did get Grandma Honey's moon pies though. They were so good! Thanks for those.
Emms, enjoy summer and tell everyone at Showcase I say hi! Crazy to think you'll be at AFJH next year. I hope you enjoy it. It's a great place. Keep up the road bike riding!
Dad, I'm excited to go study D&C 107 better. How are Shauna and Brett preparing with everything regarding their mission? 
Mom, you're the best! I'm excited to go take a look at all this temple trivia some more. Thanks for the weather forecast. Elder Wilson is not going to be happy about this weather forecast though. He's not a big fan of rain. It'll be interesting to see what he says about that. 
Heath, you're a senior! Weird. That means I'm old. Yuck. Graduations are always bitter sweet. Hopefully you had a fun time though. That's cool that Logan got to walk as well. How did that work with everything regarding the MTC? Anywho, can you get me some more info on who all the pennies went to? I want to give Elders Hall, Maddix, Farnsworth, Clarke, and others updates about it. Thanks.
Well family, the gospel is true! This is the Lord's work! I love you all and have a great week! Make it the best week ever!
Elder Vernon
Weather forecast for the week

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