Monday, May 11, 2015

Letter #94 - It All Comes Back to Family

3 And ye yourselves know that I have hitherto been diligent in the office of my calling; but I this day am weighed down with much more desire and anxiety for the welfare of your souls than I have hitherto been.

This scripture came into my mind several times this past week, and I all that I can say is that I understood what Jacob meant. I love the picture that he puts in my mind of being "weighed down" with a desire, and anxiety, all for his people. And I can honestly say personally I have felt that weight, but also that that "weight" is all created out of a love for the people I serve.

This week we had Zone Training, and oh was this an exciting one. We planned on having it on Thursday at 11am. We get a text from the tech elders that there is a strike for the workers on the trains, so we might have to cancel the meeting if it will be hard for missionaries to get to Heidelberg. We immediately looked it all up and planned for 11:30am. Then after much preparations for themes, papers, chex muddy buddies for snacks, suprise birthday party for Elder Nelson, and cool German CTR rings, the day finally came.

I myself personally, could explain to you all that we talked about, but what I want to say is how I felt. The specific themes were on unity, obedience, our purpose, a new beginning, and agency. It all went wonderfully. Everyone gave wonderful talks, and it was great. As I sat there though listening and seeing everyone's faces, this overwhelming feeling came over me that I couldn't muster or control myself. And the only word that I could use to describe it was love. I felt that desire and anxiety wash away as I sat there and let the Spirit teach these wonderful missionaries in their hearts. I gave the theme on agency and did my best to teach as Elder Bednar did and led a discussion. I am far from that, but the preparation that I put in and my many prayers were heard, and it was exactly what I, and others needed.

The other 2 experiences, have to do with family. We met with this wonderful family from Iran, who left everything to become Christian here in Germany. We just sat there amazed as they described to us their journey that was so unbearable, nothing that I could even compare my life to, and all because of Christ. The mother has even left two of her oldest children there, and misses them everyday, because she can't even see them or have contact with them.

Similarly there is also a mom that has been away from her kid about 2 years now, and all because she knows and loves her Heavenly Father and Jesus and sent her son away, so he could bring "a few souls unto Christ". I got to see this amazing mother and wish her a Happy Mother's Day, and all I can say is, I have amazing examples in my life, especially from the women that are in my life. Happy Mother's Day, mom :)

All I can say is, the overwhelming feeling of LOVE is a standard and a base for what I do. It's where my desire is rooted. I love the people I serve, and I desire for the "welfare of their souls". I desire, that the people that are close to me and mean something to me, to be happy. When I see someone in pain or in a moment of weakness, I know I can do something about it. I know I can be there. And I desire, that everyone, finds where true love stems from, and that is in Christ.

Have a wonderful week :) And if you want to know, I'll be in Utah from July 10th to the 22nd, so lemme know if you want to do anything :) much love!!!

Elder Mayne

Monday, May 4, 2015

Letter #93 - Just Ask

I have to say, I have been sitting at the computer for like 10 minutes just trying to figure out what I need/want to say in this letter, and nothing is coming to me other than just a couple of experiences that happened this week. So many things happened that changed me this week, and all I can do is just try to explain them.

This week Satan said "uh.... no" to my German and that hit me hard all week long. Then Thursday happened, and it changed me. We met with Andreas and talked about enduring to the end. We watched the video from Elder Bednar about "Enduring Our Burdens With Hope". Amazing spirit. As I struggled to produce words, I just spoke from the heart, and I felt the Spirit work through me. Really understood the "unto" the heart like it says in the scriptures.

After that we went to district meeting in Karlsruhe, and as we got there (a little bit late. LOTS of rain) they were doing it in German, and I was like "poop." Part of me wanted to curl up in a corner and just talk to myself in English; the other part wanted to stand on the table and speak the tounge of angels. I had a topic to give during the meeting, and luckily it was with Elder von Wallwitz so he picked up my big slack :) But after that, we split and I went with Elder Vorimo back to Heidelberg. Something that the Karlsruhe missionaries were doing was only speaking German the entire week because a member offered to buy them ice cream. Ha so Elder Vorimo and I had a LONG car ride (including traffic). But I just listened and asked questions and started to gain confidence again in the language it seemed I couldn't master alone.

Then we came home, cooked an awesome meal, and went to the hospital in Mannheim to visit Abbe, who just had an opperation to take out a kidney stone. When we walked into his room, his face was priceless. He was so happy we came. He was in pain, but knew that it would be better now, and he was just so grateful that we would come and stop by to see him and make sure he was alright. I had the feeling to wip out Mosiah 24 and talk about the people who had burdens that they could not bear, but then the Lord made them able to bear them. The Spirit entered the room and the people next to us also stopped conversing and listened to what we had to say. We gave a nice prayer, and the people next to him took a card as we walked out after talking to them. That's the language everyone recognizes :)

After that we went to Institute, where literally only 4 people showed up because there were several things going on later that day. So we had time to do some language study :) Exactly what I needed all day. So I thought. We had a meeting with Prakash that night, and I felt that we should call the RM of the ward, Tabea Henkel, who came back last week and have her joint teach with us. She is awesome. She came a little early and we had a nice chat. She talked a little about life after the mission and how her day was just kinda like "eh." As she was talking, we walked in to Prakash. We had a good chit chat so everyone got familiar with each other. As we started, I said the prayer, and I felt this amazing spirit. The lesson was amazing. We talked about the Anti Nephi Lehis and how they TRULY became converted unto the Lord, and read the story of how they would rather die then brake this covenant they had made with the Lord. The Spirit was so strong. I literally could say it felt like "earth was quaking" but that it was all in the heart. Again we came to stalemate of him saying he needed time, but we found out more concerns and addressed them, and the Spirit was so strong, a lot coming from the testimonies of Tabea and Elder Vorimo.

I came home that night and just reflected on everything. It seems like the rainiest days do that to people :) But I just sat in my bed, listening to the rain, and I just began to pray and to think about those who mattered most to me, and then those I am loving here, and the home that I have here. The lessons where we learn the most, are in the home. This "home" has taught me the greatest lesson I will probably ever learn. And it's relying on the Atonement. All throughout the day, I felt like my own wisdom, my strength that I had, was good enough. And then all throughout the day, the person who is the teacher (the Spirit) testified of who we really need to rely on, which is Christ. I have realized that the enabling power of the atonement is real. I am an agent, who can act on his own. If I ask the Lord to take away the problems, the things that I struggle with, what benifit would that do? Elder Bednar says that sometimes we believe that the absence of a load will make us happy. But it is only through the load, that we create spritual traction that enables us to go along the pathway to our Heavenly Father. To be an agent, is to ask. To ask for His divine and eternal help.

And Sunday I realized that. I felt the Lord carry me. We had such an amazing Sunday, had a wonderful time with a lot of investigators, and I got to bear my testimony in every class and in Sacrament meeting as well. This work is true and I know that the Lord, is who we need in order to become.

Have a great great Day. Ya'll are loved :)

Elder Mayne

oh and PS: For all you Neon Trees fans out there, I met Elaine Bradley and her husband. Haven't washed my hand for like 6 days now (spaƟ) And saw my good ol teach from the MTC Andrew Birkensha :) shout out to him and his wife.

Bad week on pics. not cool at all. haha did make some yummy cinnomon (sp) rolls though :)