Monday, November 18, 2013

A Wonderful Week Full of Miracles

Hey family!
So, I'm going to apologize. This email is going to be short, unfortunately, but we had to do an assignment for Sister Edgren and I'm just running out of time. It actually wasn't zone conference, just zone training, but we still went to PoznaƄ for it. It was a super good time, and I had a great interview with President. He's the man. I love interviews with him.
This has been a wonderful week, full of miracles. I've taken a vested interest in trying to recognize the Lord's hand in my life, and it's been miraculous to see the benefits and blessings that are coming from it. I have many more miracles than I have time to write, but I will try to include the most significant ones.
For District Council, I'm going to try to lead a discussion, as was done with Zone Council. I see the wisdom behind such a council and the way they will lead to better inspiration for those who attend. I am focusing this week on the topic "Revelation through Church Attendance." With the emphasis placed on this area by the Area Presidency and the vital commitment it is in helping our investigators progress, I know that as we focus on it, we will see blessings. I am trying to focus on the basics as well, simple teaching, promising blessings, and explaining why it is important. My testimony is always growing of basics in missionary work.
Our main miracle for the week was definitely meeting F.  As it turns out, Elder Fotu had a great idea to invite people to church for one hour both on Friday and Saturday while we were out contacting. We simply just invited them to come with us to church and experience for themselves the blessings they can experience. One man, whom we met late Saturday night, actually showed up! He was a bit drunk when we talked to him, but he still came. He told us that he had other plans that morning, but woke up late, so figured that God wanted him to come to our church instead. I think he was very right. It was great to have him at church, and he enjoyed it as well. He promised to be there next week and we set up to meet with him before the meeting next week. God blesses our efforts when we strive to do new things and have new contacting ideas.
A lesson I've been learning is about the powers of heaven and about fundamentals. I came across the scripture in 3 Ne 21:25 this week, which says "And then shall the power of heaven come down among them; and I also will be in their midst." Christ here talks about how we will have the powers of heaven with us in these latter days. I've thought about that. I don't think I realize that as often as I should or could. Yet, I know that we are not to control the powers of heaven, as it says in the Lord's revelation to Joseph Smith in Liberty Jail. So, I gave it some serious thought. I've come to the conclusion that the powers of heaven can and will work in our lives as long as we try to do our best. We can't force God's hand. His work will be done in His own time and not in ours. So, if we're not to force His hand, we still have things we can control. That is our actions and decisions. As long as we strive to do our best and we are obedient, God promises us that things will work together for our good. Thus, in a true paradox, the powers of heaven take part in our lives as we strive not to control them. We do what we can, focus on perfecting the basics, and God promises that He will take care of the rest. This is a lesson that is meaningful to learn. Of course, these are all ideas and things I've learned in the past, yet I feel that true comprehension and understanding of these are becoming fuller and more applied in my life.
Elder Fotu and I are getting along well.  We're taking big leaps and bounds together. Our companionship studies are focusing around teaching the points in the first discussion to dissolve concerns and make commitments, and I'm excited to see those things play out in our teaching. Elder Fotu is continuing to progress and I'm grateful for the time I can work with him. He's truly a christlike missionary.
Something else we did this week was pretty exciting. On the way home, on the train, we got the great idea to do missionary work. We were in an open car, so there were just seats in rows, like in a plane. Anyway, I got up and started Dan Jones'ing (in other words, preaching as if I were on a soapbox) while the sisters and Elder Fotu handed out pass along cards and talked to people. It was pretty exciting. We even handed out a copy of the Book of Mormon because of it. It was pretty cool. It's always a rush to preach like that. It's pretty fun. I enjoy it.
Thanks for sending so many pictures. That helped a ton. I sent a few of them to Sister Edgren. Hopefully they worked out well.
I loved that story about your experience with President Kimball. What an experience! I can't imagine sitting across from the prophet at age 14 and being asked if I was going to serve a mission. That's something else.
I've been trying to notice the Lord's hand in even all the little things this week, and it's made a huge difference. He is so much more a part of our lives than I think we even realize. It's so cool to see how He just twists a situation one way or lets us see little miracles in our lives from day to day to help us realize how evident His hand is in all we do. It's always there.
I also have been reading some talks from Elder Wirthlin lately. He's quickly becoming one of my favorites. My new favorite talk of his is "Come what may and love it." It was the last talk he ever gave in conference. Truly, wise words.
Well, I'm running out of time. You'll all just have to gather around my journal to hear about the other things that have taken place this week which have been miracles. I promise, they're happening.
Heath, way to go with learning a dance in a couple hours! Of course they can count on you to do that.
Emms, thanks for the heads up about Disneyland. Yes, we'll have to go when I get back. It'll be a party. Keep loving school and living it up. People are truly in our lives for a reason.
Hannah bear, you're just the doober. Keep on being awesome. Oh, 8 copies of the Book of Mormon. Humorous! Beat ya!
Mom, you're the best! Stay healthy!
Dad, keep the family safe. Thanks for everything.
I love you all greatly. The gospel is true!
With faith and love,
Elder Vernon

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