Another week in the mission field and wow, has this been a quick one! It seems like God isn't just hastening His work... He's also hastening all sense of time for us missionaries!
I wanted to share a few things with you all...
Firstly, I had a little 'accident' I think you'll enjoy! I decided to save some money and give myself a little haircut... simple right? I trimmed it down to a 5 and it seemed to be great... well, until I went to trim a little bit more, forgetting to put the guard back on... NOT SMART HA! I've got some pictures that my mum can add but end result was a total shave to the skin on the back and sides and a 1 on top... a military haircut :/ Anyone that's seen my hairline knows why this might be a little 'amusing' to everyone else ha! And they said missionaries can't have fun!
I also had a really cool experience whilst on an exchange in the rural area of Buckingham. Part of the reason I was there was to interview a 9 year old girl for her baptism this past weekend (which went ahead!) - now, whilst visiting with their family, it became apparent that her parents had some concerns that hadn't really been addressed and so we shared our testimonies of the Book of Mormon and the Atonement. It was during that time that I felt a distinct prompting to ask the mother when the last time she had a priesthood blessing was; she replied that it had been eight years! I invited her to exercises her faith and expect comfort at the hands of the servants of God and, in a wonderful display of humility, she obliged. Words cannot express the power we felt in that room as we laid her hands upon her head and, in the name of Jesus Christ, placed very specific and personal blessings and promises upon this woman! It wasn't long until we were in tears as the Holy Ghost witnessed the truth of the things we had felt prompted to share...
I share this because it was yet another encounter in my life that strengthened my faith in the priesthood of God. I know and bear my witness that the 'power' given to the apostles of Christ has been restored and that it is God's plan to bestow that privilege upon any and all of His children that desire to serve their fellow beings!
However, we are only found worthy of that promise according to our integrity. That has been a theme firm pressed on my mind this week - the concept that one can do what is right despite opposition. I have had my integrity tested and have found strength in the Atonement - the light from which the purest form of empowerment emanates. Our integrity is the foundational element of our character and our constant remembrance of it will allow God to shape and build us into the people He intends us to be!
I'm proud to be a missionary; I love my calling! It really isn't easy (they never tell you that part ha!) but I'm almost glad it isn't... the soreness after a work out is evidence that we are growing (an analogy more appropriate since Elder Dayton became my companion... I'm gonna be stacked). I plead for you to continue, to 'press forward'... 'eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him' (1 Corinthians 2:9) and I am only beginning to see the blessings the Lord is preparing me to receive. Keep it up... it's worth it!
Love Elder Pelham