So I always start and respond to all your lovely e-mails, but I'm bursting to tell you (since we weren't allowed until after the fact) Elder Bednar came and spoke to our whole mission!!!!!!!! Oh my word it was the greatest thing/day ever. Since everyone from the mission was there I got to see Sister Mckenzie Howell, Remember her from girls camp? And Sister Tycz :) and Elder Sweeten, and Elder Carlson, and the Williams from when I was in Dodge City. And what a sweet powerful spirit was there as Elder Bednar guided the discussion. It was like watching the effects of the wind as it goes through a crowd. He asked us questions and taught us and was incredibly perceptive to our needs :) I know the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is led by men called of God in an organized way. We met a couple who believe in apostles and that there are many of them and they are called by God. Well, then anyone could claim that. There has got to be organization!!! That's how God has always worked :D
Elder Bednar's main topic I would say was teaching people to act and to treat other people as agents, not objects. Often times when we're teaching, we just go on and on and on. When we ask a question, we're looking for a specific answer and playing the "guess what's inside my head" game which leaves people frustrated and confused - definitely not an environment for the Spirit to be evident in. Elder Bednar led the whole thing with inspired questions that didn't have a right answer, but were truly key to helping the person be led to find an answer inside themselves that helped them come to their own realization, and better recognize God's divine hand in their life as they strive to be obedient to and to follow Him. And yes, Elder Bednar is HILARIOUS!!!! He did in fact say the words bumfuzzled and flabbergasted. hahahahaha One of the points that hit home for me was when he said something like about not going to dance around the point, but being bold and a little blunt because he only has one chance/opportunity to speak with us. He definitely spoke something's as a wake up call, but it was always in love :) When the Holy Ghost speaks reproof to our hearts, do we get angry? No!! because it is done in such a sweet manner. But that made me realize how bold we need to be when someone opens their door to talk with us. We may only have that one chance with them!!!
Well there's that shpeel and believe me it could have been a TON longer, haha but yay for the FBI documents being done! People at the Bednar talk kept saying, "You're still here?" YES and happy to be!!! Anyways, that is so CRAZY that Amy will be home. That flew by, but she'll be home before Stephanie and Richie have their baby, so that's awesome! Will you tell me how her English is? haha Marital discord.....hahaha Dad!!! I was guessing you were on the Ambulance or something, but thanks for double the e-mails! hehe I will definitely be praying for Grandma!!!! Also, can't believe you're already prepping for Girls Camp, I guess it's only about 3 months away though. Thanks for sending me what I needed!!! That will be super helpful :)
It seems like you've really seen how other people in the ward are great examples mom :) Don't forget how great you are too!!! I always got excited when I would see you and dad and Grandma get up to bear your testimonies because I KNEW it was going to be powerful and sooo good :) I think that's why I always loved testimony meeting most, because instead of people reading off a paper, they were going by the spirit. So much more powerful!!! It's sad to hear Rick Koshyck is doubting. I wish he could remember the moments of peace and joy that he did find in the gospel. Is he at least friends with some people in the church still? That has got to be hard on Lydia. I really am glad that those examples you talked about, mom, are there to be angels to help bear her up :)
Katrina!!! those pictures are seriously so FUN!!! You look like you're having a blast :) haha Wait Tyler's getting married that soon?!! Ah!! and Steph is so cute! As for the Book of Mormon goal, we passed out one, and a few pamphlets, so we have a couple people to visit again which is great :)
Debbie has been sick still so she wasn't able to go to church, but for sure!! Sister Scribner in our ward has been awesome about calling and checking every if she needs a ride or not. This week we have a new game plan to help her out. Because smoking is not helping her health at all!!! And she needs to be around for a long while longer :) Brother and Sister Hirsh we hope will come with us this week to see her as Brother Hirsh has had to quit smoking. We hope they'll help Debbie see that she has so much great potential and smoking is holding her back!! We hope she'll seek out more faith in the Savior and His Atonement for the enabling power to get through trials, and be happy!!
Pam officially told us that she feels comfort and peace when she reads in the Book of Mormon!!! She just can't see that as her answer yet that it's true. She wants to do more research of going back and forth with the Book of Mormon and the Bible. Pretty soon, I think she'll know everything better than I do! haha She is so awesome and has such a great desire to follow Christ, I just can't leave Emporia yet!!! I want to be there for these wonderful people!!! It's killing me because we'll find out about transfers, and I really hope I'm staying but I'll go where the Lord wants me to go!!
Well I love you all MUCH!!!! Have a wonderful week and KNOW that as you're doing good, the Spirit will be there :)
-- Love always and forever!
-- Love always and forever!