I hope you all are doing well, and I want to let you all know how grateful I am for each and everyone of you. I'm not sure that I would be where I am at without the friendships and guidance that I have received from all of you. I've realized that Heavenly Father has to be real because it was He who allowed me to grow up with such wonderful people.
Dad asked me about my insights in from the temple a couple weeks ago. I don't think Heavenly Father would mind me sharing the one insight that I had. I've been troubled a little bit over the past couple weeks because oftentimes I am not always sure how to tell the difference between a prompting from the Spirit and my own thoughts. Before going to the temple, I had the opportunity to fast and to pray with the rest of the mission. When I was sitting in the Celestial room, I was thinking about this particular issue and what the answer might be. Does Heavenly Father smack us up by the head or yell in our ears to get us to listen? No, not really... The answer that I received was Him finishing my thought for me. The difference between a prompting and my own thoughts, as I was told, is where I am standing. That doesn't mean that I have to be physically standing in a particular spot or "have enough bars" to pick up Heavenly Father's frequency; I need to put myself in the right frame of mind by being obedient, and actively searching for an answer. To me, that's what it really means to "stand in holy places". Our bodies can be temples if we are actively trying to purify our lives.
But enough about me. We were able to teach a couple of lessons this past week. One of those was to our 12 year old investigator. We taught her about obedience, prayer, ad scripture study. It was really neat because I felt like I was actually being guided while teaching the lesson. Sorry Brother Pace, but I even had a prompting to give her my 5-minute ponder card. You wouldn't mind sending me another one, would you? ;)
I am also blessed to have an awesome Ward Mission Leader. Brother Truman is amazing. He does so much for my companion and I, as well as our zone. He was called to be Ward Mission Leader as I got into the ward. He has so many ideas and thoughts on missionary work; I am just excited to continue working with him. One of his big things involves large ward gatherings on a regular basis. I know we do those at home, but it would probably be good if you did them as often as possible. They're a great way to break the ice with less-actives and non-members by just showing them that we're not weird at all!
Well, I hope you all know that I love you! I think about home a lot (probably too much) with the knowledge that I will see all of you in 22 months. I want to come back different, not so different that I'm not recognizable, but different enough for you all to see how much the Lord has changed and refined me. Missions make boys into missionaries, but Christ makes those missionaries into men (I came up with that on the fly; I thought it was pretty cool).
If you really want Christ to change you, stop wrestling with the Spirit and just let it happen. Do what He wants you to do and I promise you will be different. You will be better.
Keep in touch. Write letters, send emails, smoke signals, etc. I just want to hear how you all are doing!