Peace in this world....probably the most sought after feeling in times of self-doubt and inadequacy.
This week I changed what I asked for in my prayers. I stopped asking for a way to overcome my struggles, but instead I just prayed for patience. I finally applied what my head always knew, and let it touch my heart. I felt peace.
Something I learned this week is that when God asks us to be patient. He doesn't ask us to be patient alone. But instead He comforts us with that peace that only He can give. (John 14:27)
Alma 26:27 - "Now when our hearts were depressed, and we were about to turn back, behold, the Lord comforted us, and said: Go amongst thy brethren, the Lamanites, and bare with patience thine afflictions, and I will give unto you success."
I think I finally understand this scripture. I've read it so many times I can't even count but I don't think I truly understood the magnificence of it until this last week. It's when you finally come out of the darkness of depression that you can truly recognize the hand of God in your life. When you finally FEEL what comfort from God feels like is when your testimony is strengthen.
This last week the AP's asked us to email in one miracle we saw from the month of July. This is what I chose to write:
I have been on my mission for almost 10 months now and I can honestly say that the month of July has been the most miraculous of them all. However, not for the reason you might think because for the first time in my entire mission I have gone through an entire month and not even found/received one new investigator. Literally zero. Which is not a reflection of me and my companions efforts. Trust me. Now you might be questioning what is so miraculous about that. Well, I guess saying I received literally zero new investigators is a little dramatic. The truth is I did receive one. But she came in the form of an amazingly humble shy recent convert of 2 years from the country of Laos. Yes, she is my companion. This last month has been one of the hardest of my mission, but something I realized is that training one of God's missionaries is one of the greatest experience you can have. I learned that I had taken for granted how blessed I was to have grown up in the gospel. Having the influence of my parents shape my moral. While my companion had no such thing. She did not have the same upbringing I did and just the fact that she found the gospel is a miracle in and of itself. I love her with all of my heart, and her influence on me will be everlasting. She is my miracle, my one investigator, my greatest joy! Seeing her progress and understanding of the gospel increase has brought me more happiness than I can even express. God is truly aware of all of us. As His children He knows our individual needs. And this month, He knew that the struggles I would face would truly shape me into the person He desires for me to become. "It will all be worth it!"
It was immediately after I wrote this out to send on Friday that my perspective changed. I felt myself finally come out of the darkness I was in and felt that healing of the soul. I realized that it is in the moments that I bare my testimony that I feel the most peace. But since we had had so many little changes to teach this last month, I felt lost and dark. What a realized is that investigators aren't the only person I can bare my testimony too. And actually they shouldn't be the only ones. I should bare my testimony to EVERYONE. Especially my companion. I finally let go of my pride and tried to open up to my companion, no matter how insecure I felt in the language. I realized that when I finally relaxed and stopped trying to speak to just speak, but to speak from my heart the words came. I realized that I can actually speak this language. Not very well, and not very pretty. But enough. Enough that the spirit can carry the message to the hearts of the people I speak to. I've learned to speak from the heart in English, but I realized how much I lacked humility in speaking from the heart in Thai. But now, I feel at peace. I feel at peace with the vulnerability. With the innocence. With the fluency of my speak. But most of all I feel at peace with the trust I have developed in God.
This week is just the beginning. I finally let go.
This work is in His hands.
So until next week!! When I will probably have a complete meltdown again and start all over, learning the same lesson I just learned. 555