Thursday, July 17, 2014

Adam received his flight itinerary to Japan!!

July 17, 2014

This week was both rewarding and incredibly trying at the same time, and it's surprising how frequently those two situations go hand in hand. I'm not going to lie. There were some moments where it felt like I hadn't actually learned any Japanese at all, and I had suddenly regressed to my first week at the MTC. We had the opportunity to Skype call some volunteers who are living in Tokyo right now, but when we were talking, it felt like my mind just went blank. I honestly couldn't think of anything to say, and I'm sure that it was quite the awkward experience for everyone! The volunteer was very patient, and while it was probably hard to understand our words, I hope that we were able to communicate our message through emotion. Some days, it feels like everything is a struggle. You forget vocab that you just learned, stumble over sentences that should be easy, and listening to Japanese just gives you a headache. These days are certainly the most difficult to push through, but I also learn the most from them. Reflecting on those trying times helps me to better understand my own weaknesses and failings, and despite my embarrassment and frustration, I know that I can and will get better! Along with the frustrating times, I've also experienced times where I've felt the comfort and peace that comes from missionary service. There is no greater joy than teaching others of truth and watching them gain a testimony of it themselves! I've never considered myself the greatest teacher, and before my mission, I felt that, as long as I understood the correct answer, it didn't matter what everyone else thought. Now, I can't imagine not sharing what I know to be true! The gospel of Jesus Christ is of eternal and universal worth. It can be applied to any and all fields of life, and if one, acting in faith, adheres to its principles despite trials and struggles, they will undoubtedly come to a knowledge of its truthfulness and experience true joy in their life. We need not struggle through life without a sense of purpose or a hope for something better. As Elder Jeffrey R. Holland testified, 
"because Jesus walked such long, lonely path utterly alonewe do not have to do so. His solitary journey brought greacompany for our little version of that path—the merciful care of our Father in Heaven, the unfailing companionship of this Beloved Son, the consummate gift of the Holy Ghostangels in heaven, family members on both sides of the veil,prophets and apostles, teachers, leaders, friends. All of these and more have been given as companions for our mortal journebecause of the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the Restoration of His gospel. Trumpeted from the summit of Calvary is the truth that we will never bleft alone nor unaided, even if sometimes we may feel that we are. Truly the Redeemer of us all said: 'will not leave you comfortless: [My Father and]will comto you [and abide with you].' ".

We should always remember that, no matter how alone, abandoned, and utterly defeated we feel, we are never truly alone nor are we failures. We only have to make the choice to endure once. We don't need to reinvent the wheel over and over again. 

As Stephen E. Robinson said in a talk about enduring to the end

testimony isn’t like hypothesis in science, which may be supported by evidence one day and destroyed by it the next. It is conviction based on the evidence of things not seen that some things are eternalltrue. (See Heb. 11:1.) The provisionally converted are those who just haven’t found reason to leave—yet.

once knew man who had to decide whether to pay his tithing every time his check came, whether to go to his meetings every time they were held, whether to take an   alcoholic drink every time he was offered one. Finally friend asked him: “Why can’t you just decide once and for all which side you’re on? Why do you have to re-examine your loyalty every time decision is called for? You are spirituallreinventing the wheel over and over again, and you will never make any progress until yocan build on what you alreadknow.”
few weeks later he called hifriend and asked for ride to some stake meetings. The friend was pleased he was going, and when he told him so, the man responded: “You  know, wouldn’t like it if my wife told me she had to decidevery morning whether she still loved me or not,or if she told me she only stayed with mbecause she hadn’t   found reason to leave—yet. guess the Lord is entitled tmore of commitment than that from me. I’m ready to stop reinventing the wheel and move on.”
I love you all and wish you the best,
Elder Christensen

No comments:

Post a Comment