Dear Friends and Family, July 19, 2010
This week was not the greatest. My companion had to leave on two separate occasions. I totally understand Elder (Kyle) Jones pain when he was put in triples for so long. You just feel kinda useless. And then, on Sunday, Elder Ho. and I were both just feeling a little down. Really, though, looking out how we worked and how things are going, nothing huge has changed, we just both have pretty negative attitudes right now. Working with the "emerging Church" is really quite frustrating.
Alex D. was baptized yesterday. That guy is the MAN! We were teaching about "Our Life on Earth" in investigators class, and he pointed out: "It's impossible to be perfect by ourselves. We need to follow the guidance of the Holy Spirit. Can you teach us how to recognize the Holy Spirit? I think that would be better." Aaron, the best non-member in the world (long story short, he knows everything, and is waiting to be baptized with his family in the States) was just nodding and Elder Ho. and I were fist-pumping.
We haven't had to do that week-long leadership training yet, but I'm really excited for it. I love meetings. I know that's probably weird, but I find that, with the Church, meetings are just excuses to sit around and feel the Spirit guide you in your specific office and calling, which feels great.
You know what else feels great? Mail. Man, it felt great to hear from many people. The Brames wrote, Charlie Steele, Brendan Abbott (who is the man! Congrats on making it home in one piece!) Kat wrote, and thank you for the package, Mommy! Salami is the greatest thing man has invented. The End... of that paragraph.
I can't say I have a huge spiritual insight this week. Really, the difference between good and great is humility. Elder Talmage points out in his AWESOME book, Jesus the Christ, that humility may well be akin to rank in the kingdom of heaven. He who understands he is least is probably greatest - which is why this week's personal study is only going to be on Christ-like attributes.
Other point: One thing I've noticed among some of \the churches here... A lot of Ghanaians will tell you they were started just for money. Just like the Book of Mormon says, many in our days will build up Churches for the sake of getting gain. To be honest, that is where most of Ghana's poverty comes from - hard-working, honest people giving all they have because their pastor promised he would pray for them, and then he uses it to buy nice cars and a fancy home. Man. Alma talks about the horrible things priestcraft can do to a nation. I can bear testimony to it.
I saw Elder Be. at Zone Conference. The man is training! I'm going to be a grandpa! He's one of the most legit missionaries I've ever had a chance to be around. In a lot of ways, I could learn to be a lot more like him.
A bunch of missionaries are going home. President saw this MTC group was just too huge, and decided to break up when he's sending them home by sending a bunch home a transfer early. Elder Ba., the former AP, is going home on Wednesday. That's just strange to me. He went out with a bang, though, teaching 56 lessons this week... twice as much as anyone else! That just gives me something to shoot for my last week... 60.
Well, I can't really think of anything else... I love you dearly. Like Joseph in Liberty (not that I'm anywhere near that!), the Lord takes my darkest moments to remind me "Thy friends do stand by thee" and it is the most wonderful feeling.
Elder W. Farnbach