Monday, November 14, 2011

Greetings from North East Ohio‏

Dear Family,
                     So grateful to be able to write you all briefly today! It has been another great week in the mission. I am learning, growing, stumbling and failing, getting back up and getting better and working out the final kinks of adjusting to the mission. 6:30 in the morning doesnt seem to bother me anymore, as I grew up being far from a morning person. The serious razor rash I have from my ever present and growing beard and daily shaving doesn't bother me anymore, after all I don't have any girls to date  this week, and my ever enlarging 5' O' Clock shadow is a sign of my ongoing quest of 'manhood'. My love handles from the imposition of members urging me to take 'seconds' and providing a desert at EVERY meal don't bother me either. I am not apprehensive to approach anyone on the street or knock on a door. I am not afraid to wake less actives up from the deep slumbers come Sunday morning. I realized it this week, I am officially transitioned!

       This week was great! A quick update on Lily. She is doing great! We finally got to teach her parents and encouraged them to read from the Book of Mormon. We will also be raking up on their leaves on Tuesday, which should provide for a nice suprise. Lily's baptism is all set for Friday night, we are trying to make it a really special service for her. She said she wants me "give her the Gift of the Holy Ghost"! I can't wait. Elder Crosland is going to baptize her! So excited for him to have this opportunity only 3 weeks into the field! He is thrilled and getting more excited and acquainted with missionary work as the days go by.

         A few weeks ago I mentioned a man who apporached us at Walmart and explained that he was from Provo and had fallen away from the Church many years back, his name is Justin Maybe. Bro. Maybe came to church yesterday for the first time in about a decade. He was warmly welcomed and even found a member who was an old co-worker with him years back! The transition was great, he asked the clerk to have his records transfered to Ashtabula and said he can't wait for next week. We also got to teach him some great lessons this last week. Friday my companion and I were at the house doing companionship study and we had an option of going to the library and doing an online course that is part of his traning but instead opted to do it sometime this week. Then came the spirit that spoke to me, "Get up and go to the lirbary", "Elder, forget everything I just said, lets go to the Lirbary". Sure enough when we walked in there was Justin! He had told us early on in the week that he was struggling to find the 'passion' in his heart. I went and studied for him that night and came the the 22nd Chapter of Alma where Aaron is teaching King Lamoni's father about how to recieve the spirit. The scripture says that Aaron expounded the Nature of God, the Plan of Slavation and then finally challenges the King to get on his knees and pray to a God he does not know. The King is humble and follows the council, offers up a heartfelt prayer and says that he will "give up his kingdom" to know the Father. So as we saw Justin we asked if we could share a quick lesson with him and he said it was no problem. We quickly got a conference room in the basment and began to expound this story from the Book of Mormon with him. It was what he needed, needless to say by the end of our lesson we were all on our knees and seeking our loving Heavenly Father, the spirit was ever present!

         One last sweet experience we had this week was with a less active couple named Jared and Missy, who happen to be my distant relatives! We had an appointment with them on Wednesday night and we taught the value of family prayer. We have been trying to help this family feel the spirit and gain activity back into the church so we felt prayer would provide a good foundation for that change. We had them both list off things they were grateful for in one another, it was really sweet to listen to, and seemed as though it had been a while since they had uttered such words to each other. They began to list off and the spirit was so strong. They both cried as they reflected and kindled their gratitude. Lastly we challenged them to now thank their Heavenly Father for making it all possible. They both prayed. It was lovely and before we left they said that we have a spot at their Thanksgiving Dinner table! So, I will again be with family for Thanksgiving this year! The Lords tender mercy are too good it seems.

         All is well. Thank you for all your prayers. They work! I am growing daily and am so grateful to be where I am. To my family and my friends, all those who receive this letter directly and those who read the blog, I want you to know that I know God lives. His blessing can be immediately given if we will but fist have the desire to seek him and be better. I know that this work is true! I love you all and testify that that Christ Lives! Love Elder Prince

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