Monday, June 9, 2014

It is a busy day today! June 2nd letter

Hey howdy hey family!
It's a busy day today, and I have very little time. I love you all, but this week's letter is going to have to be short. I'm trying to keep my journal updated, so you can all read about it when I get home.
It's been another solid week here in Poland. I was grateful for a chance to have an exchange with Elder Allen. It scared me to think it was the last one of my mission. Yet, I feel like it was successful. We had a lot of great miracles happen while we were in Kraków. One specifically comes to mind. We talked to a young guy named T in a park for probably the space of an hour. He was a university student who is studying theology. It was a spiritual lesson and one of the first times I felt like I really put together how to teach a Restoration lesson and then relate it to the person I was teaching. T was touched by it, visibly. It was a powerful experience. I felt like the Lord placed T in our path so that we could specifically teach him. Elder Allen and I talked a lot about teaching during our exchange. He is a good missionary and he is excited to improve his teaching skills and do the things which the Lord expects of him as a missionary. All in all, I would consider the whole exchange successful.
I was pleased to be able to attend a few zone trainings this week. It's always refreshing to see other missionaries and be able to see the information the Zone Leaders and Sister Training Leader pass on based on our teaching. Each training was a bit different, but each was led by the Spirit and was what needed to be taught. Elder Lanham said something during the one in Kielce that caused me great reflection. He mentioned how each of us was called here for a purpose, and if we don't know that purpose, it's because we haven't spent enough time in prayer trying to figure it out. Honestly, that offended me. I didn't feel like I knew why I was called here or what exactly the Lord had used me to do, and I felt it outlandish that he thought he could tell me that I hadn't spent enough time in prayer trying to figure it out. I had spent much time trying to figure it out and it had been a subject of my prayers for a long time. I talked to Elder Lanham about it later, and as we did, understanding came for me. Had my mission have passed the way I would have had it, I would have had incredibly high numbers and been known as a missionary who worked incredibly hard. I've worked hard, but the numbers haven't ever been there. That's humbled me a lot, especially since results have been such a high indicator of what I accomplished before my mission. It was then that I realized the Lord taught me a lesson. He's used me, I feel, as a big influence on other missionaries, to help them and guide them as they go about in their work. That's something I can't measure with numbers. In order to feel like I've made a worthwhile contribution, I have to trust Him and be able to look past numbers. That's still a hard thing for me to do, but it's something I'm getting better at and learning about.
My mission isn't over yet, and I plan on making the next two weeks some of the best, but I've thought a lot about the changes that have taken place in me. None of them are what I expected to happen while I was on a mission. Well, I should take that back. The big ones were ones that I couldn't have predicted. Yet, I feel like I've become more of a complete person.
Heath, congrats on graduation. I'm excited for you.
Dad, tell Nate hi for me, as well as Austin Waddoups. He and I spent some time together in the MTC. We were in the same branch. Good luck with releasing.
Mom, thanks for all you do. I appreciate it greatly. I'll give that topic some thought.
Emms, keep on being awesome! Get excited for High School.
Doobs, keep Starszy happy! I'm excited to see him.

Love you all. The gospel is true!
Elder Vernon

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