Tuesday, July 5, 2011

July 5, 2011 - Email from Elder Bezas

Howdy howdy!

So this week has been full of stuff happening. Two of our converts were confirmed this week in Sacrament and another passed the sacrament for the first time! Oh so cool. It was a great day in church!

And my reason for not writing yesterday is we figured since the library was closed on Memorial Day... that they would also be closed on Independence Day. So we saved miles in not potentially taking a waste of a trip.

So yesterday we went with one of our investigators and his wife to Philly to visit some of the sites. So cool! They have a 4th of July parade and we visited Benjamin Franklin's grave along with a couple others who signed the Declaration of Independence. We also visited Elfreth's Alley. One of the oldest streets in Philadelphia. So cool. Colonial. :) I love history. 

We also went by the Liberty Bell. It's really interesting. When we visited as a family years ago, I never considered that I would be called to the Philadelphia mission. Let's see. We also visited Jim's Steaks. Our investigator really wanted us to try their cheese steaks; so we waited in line for about 30 minutes to get a couple. Oh! So good. Definitely the best I've had. And I've had a lot for only being here two months. I wasn't so sure about the concept of the cheese steak when I first came, but I'm definitely sold on it now! I love them. Good thing they're super healthy ;)

It's interesting. In this last week, three people have asked how I felt when I first came here, confidence wise. They all have said that I presented myself from the beginning with confidence. That I didn't seem like a greenie, or "golden" as they're called in this mission. Which I was very much surprised to hear. Since I felt like the absolute opposite of confident. Ha. Definitely not confident. So I was pleased to hear that I didn't mess up in their eyes as much as I felt I did.

And this last week I decided to repent...and keep a good journal. So in the months past, I've written every so often. In the MTC I wrote almost every day. But it was shorter tid bits. A paragraph here or there. And once I came out here I was pretty bad. But I realized that I'm really going to forget a lot of what goes on. And I'll look back and wish I had kept a better record. You only serve one mission. So for the past week since Saturday I have written a page a day. I'm going to keep that up for the rest of my mission. I've metaphorically slapped my wrist. Ha.

And I can feel the love our ward has for us as my pants seem to shrink. Dang. We get fed a lot. Which is a great thing. But my metabolism isn't quite keeping up. Well, time to work out harder in the morning. Which is interesting with the shin splints. But those seem to have lessened recently.

So something I've considered recently is the chance that I might "take over" the area with this next transfer. I would definitely still be the junior companion, which I'm definitely cool with, but I'd be the one who "knows" the area, where as my companion wouldn't. If Elder Daley gets transferred out. Elder Daley was able to stay with his trainer for three transfers. So it is possible that I could stay a third with him, but it seems like most likely he'll leave. But that's up to the Lord. I just still feel somewhat inadequate for this work at times. I like having someone with more experience with me. I'm still getting the hang of this.

But the work will go on. This is the Lord's work. He'll not let it fail. He helps those that serve Him.

I had a little breakthrough though. One morning this week during studies I had this thought process- (In the past I have struggled with the thought that I personally don't make a difference. That some other elder could very easily fill my place here in whatever area I serve in. That I don't really offer that much personally.) I realized that if every missionary felt that way, and took it to the extreme of going home since they "don't make a different" then there would be no missionaries. And they truly wouldn't make a difference. Because they'd be home. So a huge part of the missionary work that occurs wouldn't happen. 

So I realized that although I probably do have more of an impact than I feel I do, that in a way that I realize I do make a difference here, since I add to the number of those serving the Lord here. Hopefully the gist of the positive break through I had there comes through and that doesn't all sound negative. :)

So really cool experience- this week we met with one of our investigators who has met with the missionaries for a while. It was a really special experience, as we helped her to understand how the Spirit speaks to her and to help her realize that she does feel the Spirit. She sincerely wanted to know how she can experience that more in her life. Oh the Spirit was strong there.

It's funny. I'll occassionally stop and think- Hey, I'm actually on my mission. For forever, it was- one day- I'll be on my mission. And now it's here. Crazy!

Alright, well I hope all is well and I love you all!

Keep the Faith,

Elder Bezas

"Yea, I say unto you come and fear not, and lay aside every sin, which easily doth beset you, which doth bind you down to destruction, yea, come and go forth, and show unto your God that ye are willing to repent of your sins and enter into a covenant with him to keep his commandments, and witness it unto him this day by going into the waters of baptism." -Alma 7:15