Greetings from the WAY far north. It's getting colder :( But our spirits are warm :) So many good things are happening. Here comes that question that seems to come every week: where do I possibly begin?
Well, just before coming here to the library to email you guys, I received my "don't get trunky" letter in the mail from my mission president. So wierd. I guess that means that the end is coming up. Which I am very much in denial about. I never thought I would be this way, but I seriously will NOT think about it. But whether I think about it or not, the fate for where I will be for the remaining 6 weeks of my mission comes this Friday. Yup, change calls are once again upon us and I have NO idea what is going to happen. I hope more than anything that I will be able to spend my last transfer here in Haaga, but of course I am willing to serve wherever I am needed at this time. I just hope I'm needed here :)
So many good things are happening in this area right now. The baptisms are scheduled for this Saturday. We are praying and fasting that everything will work out. They are both doing so well, and really seem ready in so many regards. But one of them still needs to quit smoking. That is the one thing that is worrying me at this time. Even if she does not get baptized this weekend, I have no doubt in my mind that she will get baptized. It's only a matter of when.
We had a few teaches with them this past week, and they were all really good. My favorite was probably when we watched the Restoration DVD together and taught and testified about the prophet Joseph Smith. It was so good. The spirit was present. They even had a friend along who asked a lot of good questions, accepted a Book of Mormon and is now a new investigator :)
Oh, another cool thing with them: We taught them the law of tithing with the Bishop this week, and before the lesson started, one of them was like "hey, last night I was really tired when I came home from work, but I decided to read a little in the Book of Mormon. I found a passage about the Plan of Salvation that you taught us about. It was really nice." Mom and Dad, I'm not sure what it feels like to be a proud parent, but I can only imagine that it feels somewhat like how I felt in that moment.
So, good things are happening. But I still feel stressed sometimes. Like that feeling that there's always more to be done, there's always something more that I can do. Which is true. There is always more to be done. Our duties and responsibilities as missionaries (and in other capacities in life) are never ending. I definitely feel like we really can only do so much-- we do all that we can and leave the rest up to the Lord. But where is that "point" that is "all that we can do"? At what point do I hand it over to the Lord? Well, I've come to realize (and am still coming to realize) that this perspective is very different from the way the Lord sees it. He isn't waiting at the finish line marked "all that you can do." He doesn't look at us and say "well, you didn't quite make it, so I'm going to withhold my grace." He's with us every step of the way. He rejoices in our righteous endeavors and desires. And He sees the potential in each of us. So He is right there by our side--helping us when we are tired, discouraged, stressed, uncertain, etc. We just need to remember to look to Him. I'm praying right now that I can more fully trust in Him.