Wednesday, April 30, 2014

This has been an awesome week!

Dear Family,

This has been an awesome week! We have had a lot of meetings, but we were still able to get a lot done despite it all. I will talk about it soon.

Lizard Earring

Our district

Elder Allred, Shepherd of Sheep

Edward Crawfish Hands

My Dirty Shirt

First I have to say CONGRATULATIONS to Alex. That is so cool that he will be going to Peru, I know he is going to come to love those people, the food, the culture and the gospel. I am really excited for him. I was a little sad when I saw he would be leaving July 29, so we won't be able to see each other for about 3 and a half years, but that is okay because what better thing to be doing than serving the Lord. 

Dad, I know how you feel when it comes to trying to find a balance for everything in your life and it just feels like somethings get neglected. It is either everything gets a little neglected and a full effort isn't put in, or you focus on a few things and put the others on the back burner completely. I am still not sure how to deal with this haha It reminds of Elder Bednar's talk from this last conference about assessing our load. There are somethings that are necessary (and some of our hobbies can fit into that category  because they are gifts and talents from God) and then there are the superficial and hollow loads that don't help us with our traction. I guess the key is to find out what Heavenly Father wants us to do. Oh and that Bednar Challenge you do read through the whole Book of Mormon. 

Well I will give a report on this week. It really has been awesome. Elder Allred and I are finding a good groove with the work now and we are seeing a lot of miracles happen everyday. For example on Wednesday we were up in Opelousas and decided to walk some to save a few miles. We walked to a couple houses but to no avail until we decided to go visit a media referral that we had received...but that didn't work out either, no one was home. But, we did see this family sitting on their porch and Elder Allred was prompted to go and talk to them, so we did! They are the P. family and we were able to share a little about what we believe. They invited us back and we were able to go over there with with Brother Freebairn on Saturday. We had an awesome discussion on the Restoration, the spirit was there and everyone could feel it. They agreed to read and pray about the Book of Mormon (or as they say "The Book of Norman") and said they wanted to come to church. Well they didn't come to church, but we have faith that they will! It was a testimony to me to see how easy it really is to share the Gospel. Sometimes you just have to hit the streets and walk a little bit, I promise that you will have opportunities to share the gospel. It is cool to see also how even though we weren't able to see that media referral, there was a family on a few doors down that was prepared to hear the gospel. Tender mercy. 

That same day we were able to go with Brother Freebairn and see a lot of cool miracles as we went out with the intent to help people. We were able to help E. switch out his fridge (his had been broken for weeks and all that was in there was a small portion of spoiled meat) We. also had the opportunity to go with him to Walmart and just supply him with what he needs. My testimony built so much in the love that God has for us and how much he cares not only for our spiritual needs, but our temporal needs as well. He loves us a lot. I also gained even more respect for Bro. Freebairn, he is very Christlike in his genuine concern for the well being and happiness of others. He is willing to go above and beyond and to totally forget himself in the service of the Lord. I hope I can be like that someday. We saw the C's a less-active family, and had a cool experience. We just went over to see how they were doing and they started  telling us how they had a change of heart and they wanted to start doing it the Lords way. And they told us they were going to come to church. 

Yesterday was awesome as well. The C's ended up coming to church and so did there Son, A. with his girlfriend K. It was so cool to have them all there. And then the part that will make your mouth water. The Nations invited all the missionaries and the Freebairns over for a Crawfish was so good. They bought three sacks of Crawfish, which is a lot, the boil them in a big pot with tons of seasonings, they pour them all over a table and then everyone just goes to town. I had to wear a T shirt over my white shirt and I am glad that I did because I got really messy haha. The food was awesome, but the company was even better. It was one of those ideal sudnay afternoons that you are able to spend with those that you love and relax. You just remind your self that everything is going to be alright. 

Well I will end with a little exerpt. 

I have been studying our purpose not only as missionaries but as sons and daughters of Heavenly Father. I remember watching an I'm a Mormon video about a physicist and he explains that they know they are coming to a correct and accurate answer when the solution starts to become more simple. Well I feel like the answer and solution is becoming more plain and precious to me, so maybe that means we are on the right track. In 1 Nephi 11, Nephi desires to see what his father saw in the vision of the Tree of Life. He believes his father, but he wants to understand for himself. That is something we all desire, to know for our self. The Spirit of the Lord begins to show him this amazing vision and there comes a point where he asks him a question, he says " Knowest thou the condescension of God?" Nephi then answers "I know that he loveth his children; nevertheless, I do not know the meaning of all things." Although we may not know some of the answers , somethings just don't make sense to us right now, we do have the most important knowledge that we can hold onto; We have a Heavenly Father who loves us. They begin to discuss the meaning of the tree of life and The Lord asks him another question, "Knowest thou the meaning of the dtree which thy father saw?" Nephi answers "Yea, it is the love of God, which sheddeth itself abroad in the hearts of the children of men; wherefore, it is the most desirable above all things." The most desirable of all things, the thing that can fill every heart and give them purpose and meaning. The Lord's response to this is very profound and makes the reason for our missionary purpose (and our individual purposes) very clear "Yea, and the MOST joyous to the soul." That sounds pretty certain, the Love of God is the most joyous thing for our soul, it will bring us the most happiness and it is something that we can share and lead people to every day. That is a blessing. Our purpose is to help people feel th
e Love of God through faith, repentance, baptism, the holy ghost and enduring to the end.

Dang this letter is a little long haha. I hope you were able to get through it. I love you guys!


Elder Brother Bear Soper

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