Monday, January 13, 2014

Peoria Week 8 *January 13, 2014

Hey there everyone! 

This week was a bit of a toss up for sure but it ended on a good note so that's a plus. I woke up on Tuesday not feeling too well and we came to find out that I had the flu. Since this was my first time being really sick on my mission I didn't really know what to do so I called the mission presidents wife. She told me to just take some NyQuil and sleep it off. Well that first day that's exactly what I did. I slept all day and all night only getting up to use the bathroom and empty my stomach. Not too bueno. But then the next day I woke up and could not go back to sleep! I tried ever trick in the whole book and ended up just making myself more awake. So there I sat for hours on end trying to read or study or do something to make me tired. But to no avail. It gave me a lot of time to think about what I am doing here and what I want to take away from my mission. I came to the conclusion that I don't want to come away from my mission with a bunch of great stories but nothing really worth while coming from those stories. Sure, I want to have adventures but more importantly I want to be able to say that I know that my Father in Heaven and His son live and that they love me. I want to be able to know exactly what I have to do each day to make it into the Celestial Kingdom to live with my family for time and all eternity. I want to feel the everlasting joy that comes from righteous living. I want to love deeper then I ever have before. I want to be able to trust in God and His plan for me. All of these things can come from a mission but only if I put forth the effort to make them. Going through the motions will bring me no closer to these goals. It will be much more beneficial to gain these things than stories to tell my friends. Eternal life is much more important to me now then living a great earthly life according to the worlds standards. All this starts with the faith I already have. You have to have a sure foundation if you want to build upon anything. That's where the studying and prayer come into play so that's where I am going to work on first. After that I will know what I have to do to help others feel this desire to grow towards their Father in Heaven.  I don't know how I thought about all this while being on DayQuil and having the flu but that's what happened. 

On Saturday we were supposed to have a tri-mission  conference with Jeffrey R. Holland presiding but he had some family emergency come up and could not make it. We still had the conference and it was pretty great. The Tucson, Tempe and Phoenix missions all met together so there was about 700 missionaries in one stake center. The spirit was very strong so much so that I started to sweat. I don't know if the 100 degree temperature in the the gym had anything to do with that. A Elder Wright of the quorum of the seventy presided. He spoke mainly on allowing your mission go through you instead of you going through your mission. Which is funny because that is exactly what I was thinking about while I was sick in bed. Kinda funny how The Lord answers are prayers whether spoken or unspoken. He really does know how to let us know what we need to do. After the meeting my entire mission met at the sight of the new Phoenix temple and took a mission photo. It was incredible that we all were able to stay in line and not break the lens of the camera. This will probably be the last time we have the entire mission together before my mission president leaves and we get a new one. It will be a bitter sweet farewell. I have been changed by his words and will miss him dearly but I know that missions begin and then in due time they will all end. It's a fact of life really. 

On Saturday night we decided to go by a part member less active house. The dad, brother Robertson, is the member but he has not been to church in over 30 years. We went over there to see if we could begin to teach his family because he has three younger daughters who are all over the age of eight and we really wanted to see if we could help them realize the blessing that the gospel could be to their family. When we knocked on the door he excepted us right in and  we started teaching them about the plan of salvation. The kids were super interested and asked really great questions. He answered some questions that we asked and the lesson went along smoothly. We asked if we could come back and we now have a standing appointment every Friday night! I hope that the kids stay involved and that a desire to be baptized grows inside their hearts because that will really help bring the family closer together. I know that the Lord has blessed us with this opportunity and has answered many of our prayers. I just pray that the family will not get scared and drop us. I know that if we move forward in faith The Lord will continue to bless the family and help them have a desire to grow. 

I hope you are all doing well and I hope that you continue to build upon the faith that you already have. Don't doubt the talents that God has given you. Use them to bless the lives of everyone you come in contact with. You never really know the impact that you can have. 

Elder Cole Safford
Peoria missionaries

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