Hi Mom!!!!!!!!!!!!! :)
Yah, the 29th is coming up, huh? Crazy!!! It's so weird to me that I've been out for several months - I still feel like I hardly know what I'm doing! :) There are a couple Elders in our zone that I've gotten pretty close with, and they go home in 2 weeks! It's so insane!
I think it's so crazy that Makaeli's 17! One more year and she'll be an adult! Ahh! That's super cool that Jared and Ezra are working on their papers! I remember this time of last year - so stressful and scary! But exciting too :)
So, not a whole lot to report here, unfortunately. We had a pretty average week. I went on an exchange with one of the Elders in my district, and it was really fun! We came out the same day, so it was cool to work with each other - it was also a little humbling; he taught me a lot. I still have 3 more exchanges I have to do, and only 2 weeks to do it! Ahh! One of them will be with Elder Moreno though, which I'm super excited for :) We're continuing to work with Abraham and Martha, our investigators that are getting baptized soon. They're so cool!! :) They came to church yesterday and the ward just embraced them SO much and they gave super cool answers in class and it was really great! We're having dinner and a lesson with them tonight! Let's see...oh, we also had interviews with our Mission President this week. For some reason I got so nervous but got in there and he's just so incredible. I also got the chance to talk with Sister Palmer; she made us cookies and had a little "interview" with us before we talked to President. My interview consisted of her giving me a cookie, asking about my family and home, and then telling me about a time she went to Colombia and bought a pot and almost got arrested when she had to declare customs and wrote that she had bought "pot". She's probably one of my favorite people ever :)
It really is cool how much you learn as a missionary! I actually don't write in my scriptures as much as I should though - instead I write in a study journal and I'm almost through with my second already! I write way too much :) That ward conference sounds really good! Church really is such an awesome time to go learn and feel the Spirit. Especially as a missionary, I've learned that church really does give us rest from the week. The Sacrament means so much more to me know than it ever has before. I love Sundays! Self-evaluation though...hmm....I try to avoid it almost cause it stresses me out so much :) What did he mean by asking appropriate questions? Did he say much about how we can accurately self-evaluate without being too easy or hard on ourselves?
So I realized something so cool the other day! Last Monday when I said that I had had a really good study in Ether 3, I had read up until verse 14. Then I got busy studying other important things for the next few days, and I finally got to finish the chapter a couple days ago. I had just had my interview with President Palmer, where he talked about everyone's God-given right to hear the gospel. I was thinking about our divine origin and just how much God loves us, and I read Ether 3:25. God shows the brother of Jared everything that He has created because of his faith. And I realized that God starts by showing us! And He does the same thing with Moses! The very first thing that He shows to the faithful, the very thing He's most proud of, is His children! He's created everything, He's all-powerful, and He could show him anything. And, like anyone, He wants to show the thing He loves the most first. His biggest work and glory and purpose is His children - you and me. He loves us so much and is so invested in helping us return to Him. He's given us our agency, but He's made every possible way available for us to find eternal happiness. I'm so grateful for that, and I hope it will help me remember why I'm out here teaching His gospel to His children.
So, could I ask you for a couple favors? I was wondering if next time you're around the distribution center, if you could get me one or two new pairs of garments? I'm totally fine, but I only have one extra pair, and I always have to wear one pair of the kinds I don't like :) So I like the medium dry-lux top, crew neck; and all cotton bottoms, 34 waist. Also, if you could pick up another journal for me? One of the big black ones, or another cool one you see? I still have over a month left on the one I have, so I'll be fine for a while :) And....could you get me another pair of jeans? The ones I wore are ripped and the ones I have now....are skinny jeans...and my legs have gotten bigger from all the biking...and they're way too tight :) And, if you find time, maybe a pair of machine-washable black slacks would be nice - but those aren't nearly as important. So, if you could grab garments, a journal, and some jeans, and possibly some slacks, that would be SUPER helpful!! I hope that's not too much.....Thank you!!
So, thank you so much for your email! I ALWAYS love reading them!! I'm not a huge fan of sending emails but it's worth it so I get some :):) You're the BEST ever and I love you so much!!!!! I'll look forward to next week! If you could pray for Abraham and Martha to keep their commitments and everything to go smoothly, that would be much appreciated. Thank you!! I LOVE YOU!!! :)
Elder Connor Hopkin
This is why I'm getting fat :) A member took us to lunch today!
February 22, 2016
Elder Ashcraft and Elder Hopkin
Saturday, February 20, 2016