Monday, February 1, 2016

Week 25--6 Months Out/The Sister Missionary Mark!

Well, this week--Friday, the 29th, marked 6 months--1/4 of the way through the mission. We call it the Sister Missionary Mark--basically he has as much time left as the sister missionaries have all together.  

Hi Mom!!!!

That sounds like a super exciting week!! Dang I hate the idea of missing out on stuff like that, but oh well :) I'm glad Dad had a good time and got home safely! Katy sent me a picture of you guys with her at her call opening and it was super good to see you :) Aww I'm just a little jealous that she's going Spanish-speaking! She's gonna do an incredible job in Iowa though! That's super exciting!! And I am soooo glad that Grandpa and Grandma are safe and happy in their home and it's so crazy that they're already BACK!! That's so nuts!!

So this was good! Nothing too too special, but plenty of good stuff :) So I'm enjoying the opportunity I have to serve as a district leader! In the Missionary Handbook, it says that leadership positions are opportunities to develop greater love and to learn, and I've already seen that! I was praying a few nights ago about my district and just felt so much love for each one of them, and I had just a tiny taste of how God feels for them, and it was super special! I love being put in a position where I get to serve more. It adds a little extra stuff to do and holy cow I feel inadequate a lot, but it's been good. I led a district meeting on Thursday and it was soooo scary but I got through it :) No new investigators this week, but we did get the chance to spend more time with Abraham and Martha and DANG THEY ARE SO COOL!!!! :) Elder Jones and I street contacted Abraham a couple months ago, and we finally got to meet with him a couple weeks ago, and he and his wife are just so prepared! He's like, gonna be a bishop in a couple years or something :) They are incredible! We haven't even taught the Word of Wisdom yet, and he was telling us how he had a party with friends and didn't drink any alcohol, even though it was super hard! And he brought up tithing and asked us how he can start paying...Elder Ashcraft said he's "humbled" to be teaching them, and I totally agree. Super cool! We had a couple of other lessons this week, with super cool investigators; the biggest problem with all three of them though, is that they like evidence and proof. Apparently there's a verse in Jeremiah that says not to trust your own heart, and they all brought up that when we asked them to pray about it. But all of them have committed to try reading and praying, and they're all really just searching for the truth - which we happen to have :) So that was all pretty good this week!

So right before this email we had a hot dog eating contest....ugh... 6 hot dogs in about 10 minutes. The winner ate 8. 67 cents for a pack of 8. I don't feel too good :) Just so you know :)

Hm....I feel like there's more to say but I don't know what. This morning I was reading in Preach My Gospel chapter 4, which talks about recognizing the Spirit. Right at the very beginning, it talks about how God is so anxious and willing to help us and support us, and we just need to be worthy and ask. I found that to be true when I was deciding whether to go on my mission this year or next. I was so worried that I wouldn't receive an answer, but I read the scripture that says to ask, seek and knock, and it will be given. I've been trying to learn more how to receive personal revelation, and I have a strong testimony that God really does answer our prayers. The Holy Ghost is so incredible, and we're promised that we can have Him with us. I've also studied and learned a lot about the importance of love over the last week (and my whole mission - that's kinda my mission theme) :) The greatest commandment is to love God, and as we remember His mercy and love towards us, we'll feel a stronger sense of love to Him, like King Benjamin talks about. And as we love and serve Him, we learn to love others. I feel like Christ's greatest attribute was charity, and I want so bad to have it! :) Anyways... :)

Oh, I wanted to ask you, were you ever able to send that package to Elder Moreno? He hasn't said anything about it, and I don't wanna ask him, so I was curious! But he's been such a good friend and leader to me, so thank you for doing that!

Thank you for always sending me such amazing spiritual thoughts!! That is such a good scripture passage! I read that as part of a list from Preach My Gospel, and that along with other Book of Mormon chapters has helped me understand the Atonement so much better, and really appreciate just how essential it is. I know I keep saying this, but without Jesus and His Atonement, there would be no hope!! And He has given us this gospel so we can access that mercy and love. And all those thoughts from Brother Millet's lesson are super cool!

So, I just love you a LOT!!! I miss you lots! And I love you lots too!! Thank you so much for everything!!! Thank you for your example and your testimony and all you've done for me! You're such a GOOD MOM!! I probably say that a lot but it's just so true! I love you!!

Elder Connor Hopkin

Hot dog eating contest--February 1, 2016

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