This week has been amazing. In a different sense of the word. Amazing in that I have seen Heavenly Father's hand, and felt our Savior's peace like never before. Amazing in that I have seen and heard things this week that have cut me down. And I have chosen to be built up again. I am reminded of the story that Elder Christofferson shared in General Conference in April of 2011. He shared the anecdote of Hugh B. Brown and his currant bush. The bush was about 6 feet high, but it was yielding no fruit. He cut it down drastically, leaving little stumps in place of the towering branches. When he looked back, he saw little drops coming from the stumps of the currant bush. It was as if the currant bush were crying, "How could you do this to me? I was making such wonderful growth.. And now you have cut me down."
The man looked down at the bush, and said, "Look, little currant bush, I am the gardener here, and I know what I want you to be."
Sometimes in life, we get cut down. Things happen that we freak out at. And it hurts to get cut down. It's not a fun process. Ever! But as long as we are patient and humble, and as we seek God's will before our own, we will be all right.
I've been thinking a lot about humility recently. If we just knew how much Heavenly Father loves us, we would be willing to go through anything for Him. Because everything that He does to us is out of love. We need Him. He sculpts us, grows us, cuts us down, grafts us into new trees, etc. All because He knows what we can become. And He is working so diligently to get us to that point. He has a plan for all of us. And it is perfect. I take great comfort in that.
No matter how hard we fight, sometimes we're going to lose. And that's okay. Because it's part of the plan. Adam and Eve probably didn't feel too good once they became mortal. Once they got cut for the first time or fell ill for the first time. But think of the joy that they could now experience! And that's what it's all about. Just accepting God's will.
This week, I will be getting transferred to Langely YSA! I am so excited, but it's also really sad to leave this amazing area in Burnaby. I will miss it for sure. The people that I have met here and the friendships that I have made will sustain me forever. I've been too privileged! Too blessed! It's amazing to see so many miracles happen, and now they'll be moving on to the next area!
Langley will be nice, though. That's where the Vancouver British Columbia temple is, for Pete's sake!
This week has been an absolute blast. We just found out everyone's transfer news and the mission is changing it up so much! I am excited to see what happens next transfer. By the way, with this transfer and the next transfer, 52 new missionaries will be coming to this mission! So...that's a whole lot of births! ;)
It's amazing to see that Heavenly Father really cares about us. Individually. And this section of His vineyard, British Columbia, is WELL LOVED! He is Hastening His work over here. It's just up to us to get on board with the work that He is doing.
I am grateful for my mission president, President Burt, and his wife, Sister Burt. They are prime examples to me. I am grateful for this time that I have had thus far to serve a mission for my Heavenly Father. And I know that this next year is going to bring so many blessings, and that there are so many lessons to be learned. This is it! This is the true, pure gospel of Jesus Christ. It has been restored to the earth. Us missionaries are not salesmen trying to get people to come to church. We are ministers of the truth. We are literally representatives of the Savior Himself. Messengers of God. Our mandate, our call, is sacred. This Work? The most important in the entire world. Without it, the plan crumbles. With it, we have hope. And not even in a weak, worldly sense of the word hope.
In the world, when you hope for things, nothing happens. When you have hope in God and Jesus Christ, though...that's when it all changes. Because having hope in Christ means that you expect miracles. And that is what changes the world.
I am so grateful for the gospel of Jesus Christ. I want it written on my heart, imprinted in my very DNA, carved into the marrow of my bones. Because I love Him. Because He is my Savior.
And I am a part of the fellowship of the unashamed.
Love you all! Have an awesome week! I will be back next time, on Elder Stock's Weird Mission Updates/Declarations of Belief... ;)
Miracles have not ceased.
Just ask this lion. ;)
Elder Westergard. Truly a man of many faces.
Gonna miss him!
Our investigator, S, and his kids M & S. S's getting baptized soon!
They are so awesome.
The Raumas (Hannu and Angela). They changed my life.
They are so amazing! Great examples to me of gospel living.
Next week will be the first letter from Langley!