You began you're last e-mail assumeing that I had forgotten how to kiss, yes I have been out of practice but I'm such a natural it won't be a problem. Sheldon, well done with your meet bro! I hope you don't have to many problems with epidermis. That's important, keep it healthy. So I would tell you about my week but I've no idea where it has gone, kinda ran away from me before I was ready to start.
Our Monday meeting with President Patch went quite well. They are always insightful and uplifting. I feel really blessed that we get to go to his flat for these meetings rather then in his office. His flat is just like a temple. Super clean, exquisite yet modest and Spirit filled. I really miss the temple, I can't wait to go back. I have learned so much i can't wait to just go and ponder on what I have learned and see what the Lord thinks about it. I'm happy to report that I'm enjoying my mission more then ever. With how the schedual is we don't have any big meetings to prepare for or special reports to do so we have alot of time to work. As it goes we get to go on plenty of companionship exchanges. These are always a highlight for me. Every single missionary who serves the Lord is an exceptional person. Everytime you come in contact with them is a oppurtunity to experience their greatness. Early this week I went on a companionship exchange with Elder Hinckley. What a great guy. He is currently training an Itallian missionary Elder Rossetti. They are haveing a wonderful time together and doing good work. The next day I was with Elder Barber (Ireland) and Elder Hristov (Bulgaria). Then I finished off the week with Elder Krebs in Watford. It is so excited to see how the Lord is working in their lives and touching there hearts. I'm so grateful that the Lord sends 19 year old boys to serve missions. There is no better investment of time. Let me repeat. THERE IS NO GREATER INVESTMENT OF TIME, then to serve a mission for the Lord. I have seen boys who grew up as drug dealers, womenizars, and partyers be touched by the spirit, and then come on a mission. Then once they got here an amazing transformation takes place. Living in an environment of the Spirit opens their eyes to a whole new dimension of things. They are stretched beyond their limits. They are force to the very limit of their strengths and almost compelled to cry to the Lord 'Help me Lord because without thee I will fail!' And the crazy part of it all is that they are not stuggleing for themselves, they struggle and toil completely for others. Whenever missionarys get frustrated it is because they cannot see that their efforts are helping someone. It is absolutly amazing. Of course I'm taking this from a missionaries view but it is the same with most callings in the Church. A bishop anguishing for those who disqualify for a temple recommend, an Elders quormm president straining to increase hometeaching, a hometeacher forgoing activites and his own to-do list to visit a member. Serveing the Lord is the greatest way to spend time.
While in the middle of writing that last paragraph President and Sister Patch just walked into the office returning from a conference in Germany. Their very presence emminates the Spirit. I really hope to be like that, that when I walk in the room people feel comfortable but feel a desire to improve themselves. They shared some really good stories. Randomly at the conference the mission President for the Finland Mission asked President Patch if he had any missionaries that spoke Myanmar. Just so happens that we have a Sister missionary from Myanmar. So turns out that a 17 year old was baptised in Finland who has no idea what he is doing but wants to serve a mission. Well this boy has 30 other Myanmar FAMILIES that also want to be taught and the Mission president has no idea what to do. He asked if he could use Sister Lwin to teach them over Skype. President Patch said he would probably just let them borrow her. How cool is that?! Also another cool story. In this months Ensign there is a story of a missionary from Armenia who went through the temple in Preston while at the MTC and couldn't spea English. This missionary served in our mission about six months ago. He was and Assitant around the time I moved to Basildon. It is just amazing to see how the Lord works and organizes things for you.
We have an investigator from the Kingdom of Brunei (little country in Maylasia) who we have been teaching for a couple of weeks. Early last week we taught her about baptism. It was a powerful lesson. We read Mosiah 18 and asked her 'what have you against being baptised?' she answered nothing, then came the baptism invitation. She felt that a few times in her life she was like a trapez artist who got to the top of the swing and when it was time to let go didn't and went swinging back. So she explained that we was at this point again where she was at a cross roads. She felt that it was right but had to much going againt it. So we reschedualed to see her. That weekend she got bad news from home, and we lost contact. Late Monday evening I was standing in a door way one the phone as she walked past. I hung up the phone and stopped her (scaring her in the process...oops) and set up an appointment. the next day Elder Giboin taught her and at the begining of the lesson she told him,
'I have prayed about baptim and I feel that I have gotten an answer.'
'I know it is the right thing to do. I'm going to go ahead with it. Even though I now that it will change my life and my family will be opposed I have this feeling that everything is going to be OK.'
How great is that! I was so excited. I love how as you serve a mission you heart expands and envelops so many complete strangers. These wonderful people that you only share limited time with will never be forgotten and become so dear to your heart. The Spirit has that effect. It unifies and builds confidence. It is how we feel Gods love, and Gods love is the greatest thing we will ever feel in this life. It is the strongest adhesive you can use to bind and hold a relationship together. The Patch's are a wonderful example of this. It seems like every time the spirit is manifest in their presence Sister Patch will reach over and grab Presidents hand. I think that the Lord wants it that way.
Any how enough of my waffleing on.
I love you all,
Elder Brighton Solomon