Monday, June 17, 2013

Staying Another Transfer

So, this week has been sweet...Oh so, I have some BIG news. I haven’t gotten my Visa yet (as we all know), but I guess they won't fly me out in the middle of a transfer, to Brazil at least. I think my mission in Brazil told that to President Holmes. So, the only way I would leave for Brazil is at the end of next transfer, which is six weeks. So I have another six weeks here at least. And on top of that, I am getting transferred, even though I already got switched areas in the middle of last transfer. So, I don't know where I am going yet, but I hope I get the package today because that would be prime.

So, tomorrow I go somewhere, and at first I was a little perturbed, because I just start to learn an area, and start to actually help, and then I leave. It’s quite a bit of work to learn an area, and I thought that I was just getting moved without much thought, because I am a Visa waiter, and we always get put in trios and stuff. But then, as Elder B and I were biking to our dinner appointment, we were on the shoulder of the road, and this car pulls off. We were going against traffic, and it looked like he was going to hit us, but he was flashing his brights, so I got onto the sidewalk because I didnt want to get hit. But as it turns out, it was President Holmes! I guess he meant to talk to me at Stake Conference, but he told me he was going to keep me here, but he really felt like I needed to go and be with this other companionship. And he said it was from the Lord, and he wasn't just moving me around like a pawn on the chessboard. And I was like, YES! Thank you, I really needed that. I should have trusted that he was prayerfully considering who and where we would be moved, but it’s hard because I am new, and I'm a Visa waiter, but I'm really glad he was able to tell me that. So Elder B is going to stay in this area (Canton West) and train a new missionary, so I’m going to miss him. 

Oh, and yeah, this last Saturday we had Mission Conference, and we all shook Elder Christofferson's hand, also President Wayne, from the Presidency of Quorum of the Seventy, and Elder Valenzuela from the Seventy, and a couple other General Authorities. So, we were in for a treat! They all spoke to us, and then President and Sister Holmes spoke to us, and their two kids, Matthew and Whitney. And all the missionaries did a special musical number as a surprise to President and Sister Holmes...we sang the Especially For Youth medley, As Sisters in Zion and We'll Bring the World His Truth. It was awesome! 

I guess Elder Richard G. Scott was Elder Christofferson’s Mission President back in the day, and he said it’s different serving with him in the Quorum of the Twelve, because Elder Scott knows a lot more about him than he knows about Elder Scott. So he said, sometimes I look down, and Elder Scott will just be looking at me, and I’m not sure what he is thinking. Pretty funny!

He spoke a little, and then opened it up for questions. I don’t remember a lot of what was said off the top of my head, but I remember feeling how important the Spirit is with relation to missionary work, and that we can actually recognize the Spirit, and that is the single most important skill a person can obtain in life, is to know how to receive revelation. So that is something I am going to be working on, recognizing a lot more how I feel, and if I feel like it might be an impression from the Spirit, to see how the results end up, and really evaluate and be sensitive and follow promptings. Because I figure, if you know exactly what it is like to get a prompting, then you will be much more likely to act on it, rather than if you are unsure. If you are unsure you can say, maybe it is, maybe it isn’t, and the strength is not there. It also requires a lot of faith. There’s so much to learn all the time!

And I can really feel the Spirit most when I am testifying to people. Yesterday, Elder B and I were talking to this guy, who was basically telling us that Joseph Smith was a false prophet. And I looked him in the eye and said, “Would the devil persuade men to believe in Christ?” He hadn’t read the Bible or the Book of Mormon, but he knew all about them. So we told him we know this Book is true, not because of what other people have told us, but we know for ourselves, and then we left. But it was really a testimony growing experience, being able to testify to someone who doesn’t believe at all. Usually I am not that bold, but a lot of times you need to be. It’s something I am getting better at.

I really liked what you said about giving your heart to the Lord, really that is true repentance. I have been completely enlightened on repentance, and what it really means...being completely willing to do whatever the Lord asks of you, and trusting in Him. I feel like I really could have listened a lot more to you guys. You have been teaching me these things my whole life, and I never really fully embraced it, but I have now. I'm glad I have finally learned what it means to be converted. I have studied the Gospel all my life, but I hadn't yet fully made the Gospel who I am. I guess that is the conversion process though. Now every time I read anything, I have such a better understanding. One important thing is, you have to want it. So many times in the scriptures after a prayer, the Lord says it will be granted unto you according to your desires...our desires lead to faith, and faith leads to action, or repentance. The way to truly learn is open your heart to the Spirit, and be willing to act on the knowledge you receive.

It is really important that we don’t get comfortable, but that we are constantly learning as much as we can and improving, especially on the mission. I don’t think I will ever be satisfied with my skills and abilities, which causes me to study harder each day, trying to figure out how I can be a better instrument in the Lord's hands. Trying to figure out how to deepen my conversion, strengthen my testimony, strengthen the testimony of others, teach better, ask better questions, recognize the Spirit, how to approach people, how to talk to people, how to work with ward members, how to teach with the Priests in our ward, how to set goals, how to achieve goals, how important it is to magnify our callings, how important Home Teaching is...the list is really endless. But we can really only achieve how much we want to, and how much faith we have, and how willing we are to exercise the faith. Jesus Christ came to earth not to be ministered unto, but to minister to the people. If we are to become as he is, I know that we need to serve others. It really changes us. The more we serve, the more we love what and whom we are serving. 

Love you all! Thank you for all the support! You are in my prayers, by name. I love you so much. I will talk to you next week!

Elder Hoyt

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