Dad: I hope you had an excellent Father's Day!
Mom: I hope you are having fun in Utah!
Elaine: I hope you are being nice to people!
Krista: I hope you have an excellent first day of college classes!
Everything in the mission world is going great. Elder Horning is awesome and we get along really well. The rumor is that I will be transferred next Monday. We will get transfer calls sometime this week. I wish I could just stay in this area the rest of my mission. I love Summerlin. I love the members. I love the people we are teaching. I just love it all.
Tuesday: Fish Tacos
Thursday: Sesame Chicken (Pei Wei)
Friday: Chicken Alfredo
Monday: After e-mailing you, Elder H and I went out with Brother M, his son, Mark, and daughter Katie, Sister P, her two daughters, Marinne and Madelyn, Tanner, Tyler, and Trevor and we went riding in the back of Brother M's truck up on dirt into the desert to Redrock. It was so much fun to bounce around in the back of the truck. I thought I was going to bounce out of the truck at one point, but I didn't (obviously). We had a lot of fun as we walked around and found petroglyphs. It reminded me of the time Dad, Grandpa, and I would go into Redrock at find petroglyphs. We had dinner with the T’s that night. Brother T was Lyman's best friend growing up. He also works with Jeff E.
Tuesday: President and Sister Black came to Zone Meeting.
Wednesday: I spent the whole day on exchanges with one of the Zone Leaders, Elder T in his area. We had a very busy day. We taught one of their new investigators, Cindy. She started crying as I testified to her that she was feeling the Holy Ghost. Then, we taught Ryan. He is 19 years old. He was the best lesson of the day. He has been meeting with the missionaries 3 to 4 times a week, and he will be baptized on June 23 as well. He is so impressive. He recognized he was not happy living his current lifestyle, so he turned to the Church for hope of finding happiness. I got to teach him about Tithing, Fasting, and the Law of Chastity. After the discussion, he said to me, "Will you be at my baptism?" It made me so happy that he invited me to be at his baptism. So, now I have his baptism to go to right before Mathew's. I am so excited. We taught a recent convert gone less-active about Keeping the Sabbath Day Holy. We had dinner with a girl named Cassidy (single's ward) and her family. She has a disability, and she always signs up on the missionary calander...then her parents have to cook and feed us. It's so funny. She is so sweet and nice. It was so fun to meet her. She just is one of those special spirits that radiates the love of Christ. Our day ended by visiting a recent move-in, less-active family.
Thursday: A day.
Friday: Teaching, teaching, teaching.
Saturday: We watched The Testaments with Mathew. He LOVED it. We asked him to say a prayer at the end and he was crying. He really felt the Spirit. I love that movie.
Sunday: Elder H and I taught Baptism to the Gospel Principles class in the A. Ward. We taught Priest Quorum in the Alta Vista Ward and Town Center Ward. Bishop R talked to the Priests about the importance of going to the baptism on Saturday for Mathew. He talked about the great relationship I have been able to establish with Mathew. It made me happy to hear.
A few weeks ago we had Zone Conference. For the meeting, we were all asked to prepare a few minute talk on a Christ-like attribute. Then, at the meeting, they would pick out of a hat and see who got chosen to share their talk. I was not chosen, but here is the talk I had prepared:
Elders and Sisters, think back to that exciting day when you opened up your mission call. Think about the feelings of anxiety, excitement, anticipation, and joy. I opened my mission call just over a year ago on May 6, 2011. Each of our call letters stated, "You will be an official representative of the Church. As such, you will be expectd to maintain the highest standars of conduct and appearance by keeping the commandments, living mission rules, and following the counsel of your mission president." The fact that we are all here is evidence of our promise and committment to be obedient.
I got an interesting letter from my cousin who is serving his mission in Chile right now. This is what he said:
"After being a couple weeks in Antofagasta, I thought my mission was in apostasy! There are massive amounts of rules being broken. My...leaders...stay up until three in the morning talking about obscure subjects...and watching movies....In our mission, this is against the rules.
I was super concerned about our district and zone being in apostasy so I tried to approach my companion who is the district leader. I told him we should probably be out proselyting during proselyting time and things like this. He said that he still felt the spirit during the day even as he stayed up until three or watched movies or slept in during proselyting times...
As missionaries, we have extra rules. If a 'normal' person stays up [until] three [in the morning] watching [movies] does that mean he won't have the spirit? He probably could still feel the spirit....My companion feels the spirit still, but doesn't realize he is forsaking the blessings of obedience to the rules as a missionary. In essence, he is choosen to be a 'normal' person."
Elders and Sisters, our reponsibility as missionaries is a celestial calling. We much overcome the natural man to be truly effective. Are we choosing to be 'normal' when we should be extraordinary?
President James E. Faust said, "If you will...be obedient...and follow the mission rules, you will be a successful missionary." We must be obedient to the Lord, His commandments, the mission rules, and the mission president in order to receive an added portion of the Spirit and His constant companionship that is necessary in doing this work.
If you are being disobedient, you may rationalize success as you teaching and baptize. However, you will never have the sure conviction and blessing of knowing you are doing all you can to assist the Lord in His work and glory.
Hebrews 5:8 speaks about Jesus Christ and says, "Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience..." Christ was perfectly obedient to the will of the Father and we are to become even as He is.
Obedience is the first law of Heaven. We must live it and pattern our lives after the Savior's to effectively teach others to make and keep committments and covenants. The blessings of obedience are sublime and supreme.
I AM SO EXCITED FOR MATHEW'S BAPTISM!
I LOVE YOU ALL! Keep writing me and praying for me!
Elder Sean Edwards