I feel as though I've hit my highest stress level of the mission (next to the time you reach when you only have days till your departure home), so forgive me if I seem a little off, there's just so much going on, it's kind of hard to keep up with! Thank heavens we've been blessed with P day!
It's such a blessing to be serving in the Tongan ward, otherwise I think I'd be making this harder than needs be ha. They're just such delightful people to be around, and since we don't see them as often anymore, I look even more forward to our dinners, activities, and church. I'm not sure why this transfer feels so different, some days I do better with than others, but I should've seen this coming because President Hobbs really wants our mission to increase our faith, so the Lord must be doing just that! I understand He sees a bigger picture than I do, it's just too bad that we as mortals tend to be so narrow-minded when things may seem inconvenient or a burden to us. I love in Hebrews 11:6 it says that without faith, we cannot please God, and faith seems to be the beginning to many things. I do have faith in the Lord and I do know that as I lose myself in His work, that's when I'll stop worrying about all the minor details and changes and be able to be of better use for our Father. It's a privilege to be doing what I do and be surrounded by a plethora of our Father's finest children. Although I do miss you all back home lots!
For the first time in my mission, a dog bit me! As I was shaking someone's hand to leave, a stinkin' Chihuahua/Pomeranian bit me ha. It didn't hurt, it just kinda startled me. It's always the small dogs that are most vicious! However, A huge husky crawled from under a fence when we knocked on a door and it looked like it wanted to eat Elder Bartlik and I. He was smart enough to suggest we don't linger at the door for very much longer.
This transfer has just been so wacky! It can be summarized by tracting, meetings, dentist appointments, and illness (Elder Bartlik, not myself.) There's a guy named Noke in our ward who was baptized in Tonga, but he lost his records, so I've been teaching him for 5 months and then all the sudden the bishop says he wants to be baptized. I was excited, yet doubtful at the same time. I really don't think he's ready. He has to come to church 3 times and then we'll take it from there and see if his faith is sufficient for baptism. It's a really big commitment!
I want to share something interesting that I realized in Gospel Principles: We were talking about prayer and then I thought about how it makes mom really angry when someone hangs up on her. I then thought about how real our communication with God is and that when I used to pray and get nearly furious and ended up stopping mid-sentence, to God it was almost as though I was hanging up on Him. It was humbling to me that if we have the decency to call upon Heavenly Father for His help, we should finish what we intended to mention.
We have 2 more meetings this week and stake conference this Sunday, I'm expecting good things from this week. I can't believe it's already March, it seems as though you all survived another Utah winter! I know it's not completely gone, it's probably still really cold there, but you're so close to the spring weather! it was really cold this week! All weekend it was in the 50's with wind as well. I don't handle the cold very well out here, it's actually pretty pathetic ha.
At this point, all I can do is thank Heavenly Father for blessing me with the opportunity of serving a full time mission. I really do enjoy what I do and I enjoy the trust our Father has placed in me to take upon us the name of His Son. I know that all of us as members of the church have to always be on our best behavior. We don't want to taint the name of Christ and missionaries are kind of like a dulled, flawed replica of the Savior (but not really, we're even less than that), but I know that the Lord will always continue hastening His work and continue to bless me as I try to remain obedient and diligent. I know that there is a time and a purpose to everything under the Heavens and we don't need to try figuring them out, we just need to get to work! I love you all and hope everything is splendid back home.
- Elder Bennion