Mom, Dad, and Family,
I was at the Bray's last night as they were over there. Go figure. They're super cool huh? Brother Bray's mom came up to me in church yesterday and said so excitedly "Doug and Elaine went through the temple with your parents yesterday and they wanted me to tell you!" Well that was kind of cool to hear! I was expecting maybe just a pop in and drop off the package, say hi, joke around and what not. But I think your way was cooler. I have a lot of fun over at their place. I don't think I ever leave their house in a bad mood. AND! They cook pretty much amazing food. So that's pretty awesome. But no, their house is one of mine and Elder Mitchell's favorite houses to visit. We always feel the Spirit there. Taralee was telling me last night that you and Sister Bray are like twins. It made sense to me but I just thought it was funny that she mentioned it. Haha, good times.
Speaking of that visit though, did you get the package? The main reason I sent it was because I wanted you to have that CD in there by Hyrum Smith (he's not THE Hyrum Smith but he's A Hyrum Smith---not that his first name starts with A, I was just capitalizing it for emphasis). But I thought it would be super lame to just send home one CD. So Elder Mitchell and I raided the apartment to see if there was anything we could send home. So most of that stuff was there before I got to the area and was stuff that other missionaries had left behind that we ended up not being allowed to have. So we put that stuff in there. You don't have to keep any of it, but I figured since I was throwing it away, I might as well give it away first. Do keep the talk though. That's a good idea.
I did get the brownies. In fact, I ate another one this morning (as part of the diet I'm on, I have to eat a brownie with every breakfast....just kidding, I'm not on a diet. But I did eat the brownie).
This week was a pretty powerful week though. There was a lot that the Lord did for Elder Mitchell and myself. I feel super humbled to be serving the Lord out here on the mission. He does so much for me everyday as I try and fulfill my calling. Everything out here would be totally impossible without our Savior. But with Him, everything becomes clearer and the path becomes easier to walk. One of the sections in Preach My Gospel that I found interesting was the last section in Chapter 4 titled A Word of Caution. The third paragraph reads "Revelation and spiritual experiences are sacred. They should be kept private and discussed only in appropriate situations. As a missionary, you may be more aware of spiritual experiences than you have been earlier in your life. Resist the temptation to talk freely about these experiences." I think it's important to keep sacred things sacred. Like with the temple. I have found that on my mission, I have been privileged to have many experiences where I've been able to "remember how merciful the Lord hath been" (Moroni 10:3) in blessing me with things I don't deserve. I feel humbled to be able to communicate with my Father in Heaven, even though in reality there's nothing I've done, or could do, to earn the right to speak with Him. And yet, we have experiences all the time that we don't deserve. I think it's important to only share them when moved upon by the Spirit, lest we become familiar and casual with blessings.
Okay but I will say this. Pray like hard core for the Gomez family, the Chacon family, and for Justin, and for Richard, and for Roger. Like, a lot for them.
So anyway, transfer calls are in and I am GOING!...to be staying. Haha here's to one more transfer in Upland with Elder Mitchell. In fact the other companionship in our ward (Sisters Christensen and Stagg) are also staying. Woot! They're the bomb. We've already planned to go Christmas caroling, because we all sing. This transfer will be ridiculous. But super super fun! I am so excited.
We had one Sister in our district get transferred. And a few other changes in the Zone, but mostly, things are staying the same for now. Upland Zone is probably the youngest Zone in the mission. About a half of the missionaries have been out for 6mo or less. WHA?! Crazy huh?
Thanks for your thoughts and prayers. I love you all and for all that you do! Don't have too much fun!---Oh wait, I need to tell you about Elder Golden. We were visited by Elder Golden of the Seventy. He is so crazy genius. He talked about goal setting and eternal perspective and our purpose for the whole meeting. He knows so much. The doctrine he talked about was super deep, but it was all applicable. So my mind exploded. But it gets better. The meeting was supposed to be for 5hrs. We ended up being there for 7hrs. It was intense. I almost died. But it was awesome.
Anyway, thanks for all you do. Remember to read and pray (a lot...like a ton) and to do the right thing. Don't forget to remember how merciful the Lord hath been. And don't forget to look Up!