It started out hopeful thinking, kind of a joke, but our district pictured here is working hard to be the best district in the mission. I guess a little competition never hurts. It's all friendly and positive. Elder VanKomen led our meeting this Wednesday and he shared a personal story which he apparently rarely does. His mother had several serious addictions, ones that were leading to an early grave. He said he tried everything; said everything he could think of to try and convince her to stop her destructive habits. He said the power of agency was in force here. He was afraid to come on his mission because she would not be alive when he finished. He decided to trust Heavenly Father because "He will tell us in the very hour what we need." He was applying this to Preach My Gospel: the section of helping investigators keep their commitment to the Lord. The Lord blessed this young elder. He and his older brother have been faithful servants and Elder VanKomen works harder than anyone I have ever seen. Guess what?! His mother went through recovery, repented, cleaned up her life and has recently gone to the Temple to be endowed. Happy day for Elder VanKomen. He finished his point (think of this with investigators & his mother): 1. We have to love the people, 2. Have pure motives, 3. Be diligent and 4. We have to desire the revelation to help each individual person. His coming on a mission was a real leap of faith on his part. He is inspiring. Speaking of inspiring, dad gave the devotional the other morning. We do this every morning in the office. And then pray, hug (sisters) and shake hands (elders) and go to work. His devotional was from the writings of the Apostle Paul. This comes from the Institute manual. "Every good cause advances on the shoulders of those who are willing to carry responsibility." It always takes moral courage. Sometimes it takes physical courage. Often it takes a good deal of hard work, but always it takes the courage to act responsibly. Here are Paul's steps to living a courageous life: 1. Maintain personal purity so the Lord's Spirit can be a constant source of inspiration: 2. Seek knowledge by every good means & from every proper source: 3. Keep current with the counsel of the Brethren and obey it: 4. Pray sincerely and often for guidance: 5. Labor diligently for the kingdom: 6. Have Charity. If we can do these things, the Lord will strengthen us so we can teach and defend the gospel of Jesus Christ with power and be an influence for good. I just thought I would send this to you. I thought you might enjoy it as much as the office did. We are learning a lot and loving it. We have had some snow, sunshine and sub-zero temperatures. Oh, I misspelled the name of the Metis tribe. I saw it on a sign as Mates and assumed it correct. We went to the Manitoba museum and now I have to correct my spelling. Will tell you more later. Love to all, you are the best family.
We love you forever!
Mom & Dad