That email quote that Dad sent is one that I heard at the beginning of my mission and has been kind of the theme for me throughout especially when I was in Kasson and had nothing going so it was either be obedient and diligent and be blessed or be like the rest of the dingle berry missionaries that had served there and see absolutely nothing happen. I have seen that principle prove true time and time again in my life and time as a missionary and in the life of those investigators I teach that make the changes that they do. When we strive to be obedient and make it a quest to do all that God asks of us to the fullest we will not only be blessed with power from on high like President Benson says but we are blessed with confidence and assurance in the Lord and what His promises are. Obedience brings peace into our lives. I have still in all my time here yet met a missionary that is disobedient and happy. It just doesn't happen. It's a lot easier to distinguish and differentiate while on a mission I think because of all the black and white clear lines that we have clarified for us and we know what to do and not to, what it means to cross and what doesn't. I think it's harder to see that same difference and and differentiation in the world as we live our lives because Satan is such a master of subtle persuasion and distraction that we may not recognize or see the lines all around us because of his cunning craft to blind us. I have a firm belief that one of Satan's best tools against all of us is distraction. For those of you who don't know what quote I'm talking about it's by President Ezra Taft Benson that says, "When obedience ceases to be an irritant and becomes our quest in that moment that God endows us with power". It's a true principle and one that we can all adopt and strive to develop within us all a little more fully. Thanks for sharing that and your thoughts, Dad.
It's not too cold as of yet. On one of the exchanges last week I got to ride my bike around with one of the new missionaries and it was around 40 degrees that day without the windchill but that's the lowest really that it's gotten. It may have snuck down into the mid 30's but nothing bad at all. There isn't snow down here yet but we have seen flurries. Nothing has stuck in the cities but up north around the areas of Grand Rapids and Bemidji they have a few inches of snow and have for a week or 2. I'm just glad I wasn't riding my bike in that haha. I should be fine and survive no problem. Not only am I a toughened Minnesota Viking after 2 years now, but I had a feeling not to send all my winter stuff home when I shipped that package with the Youngs in April, so I still have a beanie, my earmuffs, gloves, and my Mr. Mac 3 in 1 coat. Nothing should stop me now haha! :) Thanks for the concern though Mom I appreciate it. I won't say anything about the cold if it stays like last winter, but I'm kind of hoping for another winter like my first to go out on a bang. So that means we'll need a few inches of snow here soon and temperatures about 40 degrees colder than this last week. Bring it on! haha
This P-day is what used to be known as transfer calls when President Clements would call to notify all missionaries being transferred of their new area, companion, and assignment, but this last week we had to change it. With the increase that's sure to come of new missionaries there won't be any physical way for him to call and talk to everyone that is changing. We still met with him this past week to go over the transfers and will continue to do that even with the new missionaries that start to come in floods, but now we type up all the transfers like normal and will send that info to the Zone Leaders over fax for all the changes among their teams. The Zone Leaders will then call all teams transferring to notify them. President will now just call the new Zone Leaders and Trainers in the mission. So needless to say this morning didn't have as many transfer "calls" like the usual "transfer call" day in the office used to for the other 4 that I have done. We still have a lot of things to get done to prepare for the transfer coming up on Wednesday. It's a lot of coordinating and logistics figuring out everyone's transportation to the mission office now for transfers. It shouldn't be too bad though. Nothing I haven't done before. It is weird to think that this is the last transfer I'll officially be apart of and help out in though. Crazy stuff!
Before transfer Wednesday all the departing missionaries will come starting at about 9:30 tomorrow morning to do all the stuff they do when they get all trunky (Departing interview with the President to review goals, watching some training videos, lunch and dinner at the mission home with President and Sister Clements, and going to the temple to do a session together before ending with a testimony meeting and training from President and Sister Clements on adjusting to life again and being successful I guess). I have been there for the very beginning and very end of those days while serving here and helping with all the other groups to go home that I have. I always got to see the after effect of all those departing Elders coming to our apartment to spend their last night before breakfast in the morning at the mission home after which I'd take them all to the airport and wish them good bye and joyfully return not facing that thought of getting on a plane haha. What's cool about this transfer because it is my MTC group leaving I get to do all of that and some. President is letting me and Elder Lewis go to the temple and all the middle of the day Tuesday stuff that I'd miss because we're going home mid transfer and would miss out on that otherwise. The best part is that even though I get all that fun stuff with the other missionaries I came out with I still don't have the consequence at the end that I should. I get to still drop them all off at the airport and leave them there while Elder Lewis and I joyfully return to the field haha! It should be an eventful next few days!
After this week we have to gear up for Elder Eduardo Gavarret of the Seventy coming for our mission conference next Tuesday and Wednesday and the meetings that the while mission is having for that. There will be two 4 zone meetings, so half the mission at one and the other half at the other, where Elder Gavarret and his wife and President and Sister Clements will present and Elder Gavarret has asked also that Elder Clancy and I spend 25 minutes in each meeting training all the missionaries. It is kind of intimidating having to prepare to do that in front of a General Authority but it should be a lot of fun too. After that at the beginning of next week we have to start our exchange craze up again. We finished 14 of 20 exchanges total this transfer (so about 5 weeks time) with 6 more to do to finish the last batch of new missionaries while starting the work on the 9 new Elders that will have just recently have come out. It's going to be a very busy time for us, but well worth it for all the fun we will have and miracles we will see!
I hope that all goes well with all of you this next week and to hear from you soon! I love you all and love to hear from you. Your love and support has always been such a big help to me. Thanks for all that you do!