The Book of Mormon prophet Nephi once declared 'behold, my soul delighteth in the things of the Lord... My God hath been my support!' (2 Nephi 4:16,20). If any statement sums up my week, it has to be this - my heart is full of the joy that God offers!
Where to start?! Firstly, with all the news back home! I am SOOO grateful for your updates this week - to hear that 3 of my best friends have taken upon them the blessing of the Melchizedek Priesthood has brought me near tears in this library! Josh, Jason and Sam - I am so proud fo you! I love you a lot and am grateful that Heavenly Father saw it fit to make our paths cross! Next stop - missions and then, our long awaited mission reunion! I'll try and stay unmarried for that, but, with my good looks and rugged charm, I can't make any promises ;)
Also, I have been so blessed to read some incredibly inspiring updates from my family this week... I love you Pelham family! I'm pleased that you are seeing the miracles that Heavenly Father is pouring upon us right now :)
This week has been a roller coaster for me and man, have I been blessed to ride it! I was up in Richmond for leadership training and had some of the most amazing experiences of my mission so far! May I share just a few?
One of the coolest ones was with Sister Pond, who I was in the MTC with. We were put into the same group and I felt prompted to ask her how she was doing. She said she was okay but, after asking if I could help with anything, she asked for a blessing! And wow, was that an amazing experience for me! I felt the Spirit testify of the reality of the Preisthood as I laid my hands upon her head and placed a blessing from her Father in Heaven on her. I am grateful that, even in my weakness, God invited me to be involved in the process so that I could feel peace that I was worthy :)
Secondly, I felt prompted to text one of our investigators randomly and ask if there day was okay. They replied 'it's okay thank you! You always seem to pick the rough days to see how I'm doing... it must be the Spirit!'. I asked why it had been rough and then she opened up about the trails her family were experiencing! I felt such a love for them that I know didn't come from me as I testified of the Atonement and it's power to heal ALL wounds!
At the end of leadership, we had a testimony meeting for an hour or so. For the first time in my life, I actually didn't want to get up and share my testimony... well, Heavenly Father had other ideas ha! President Perry actually held the meeting until I got up and simply said 'we need your testimony Elder Pelham'. I don't remember all I said but I do remember the overwhelming feeling of the Spirit - I feel blessed to have a mission president who listens to the Spirit and stretches me out of love (maybe I will share the entire story one day - now is not the right time!).
On of my favourite experiences happened on Saturday - whilst Elder Jensen and I were planning on who to see, a solid family in the ward came to my mind. There son left on his mission to Idaho at the same time as me and I felt that, for whatever reason, we needed to visit with them. It was one of the sweetest moments of my life so far as we walked into that home and testified of their son's missionary labours. We were able to minister to a mother who simply missed her son. How humbling it is to know that Heavenly Father knows and understands even a mother's sorrow at sharing a son!
This has been a week of miracles but the most important miracle this week was the chance I had to repent... I am not the same as I was yesterday, or a week ago, or even when I left! I have been transformed through the Atonement of my Saviour, who loved me enough to give all for me! I know that, if He needed to do the Atonement all over again just for me that He would! I bear my witness that these things I share are true - if you act upon the doctrine of Christ, you can know of the reality of them too and feel the happiness and joy that permeates my soul, even now!
I love you all; I love my mission; I love my Saviour,
Elder Marcus Pelham