We had another successful week in Don Antonio, Fairview. We are working really hard to gain the trust of the members and harness their efforts in order to hasten the work of Salvation. We aren't seeing a problem with our efforts finding and bringing investigators into the church, but we are trying to work on the "hand-off" over to members to fellowship and strengthen these precious souls. We have 4 or 5 scheduled visits with families in our ward this week so that should really help us build relationships of trust as we share quick Christ-centered gospel messages in their homes.
By the way a happy belated birthday to TC (as well as Shana if she gets these emails). It's hard to remember dates because everything just kind of tends to blend into one out here. I frequently forget even what month it is haha. I appreciated the letter that was written by T.C. and maybe others? At the family reunion, I read it through a couple of times I thought it was so funny. I'm just hoping Lance is still in great shape by the 2038 family reunion and Tucker is still doing missionary work amongst the drug dealers of the world, so that we can have a wild house with cliff jumping schinanagens again.
After seeing pictures of my pamunkins (nieces & nephews) so much bigger than I can recall (one of which is actually living and no longer a fetus), has caused me to reflect upon life. That combined with the "MTC exchange" we did last week in which brand new missionaries from the MTC in Manila come out to spend a few hours proselyting with missionaries in the field. As I heard them struggle to speak the language and complain about how dirty it was here and hot and humid, 3 thoughts came to my mind. 1.) I've been out here a long time. 2.) While I wouldn't trade the last 11 months for anything in the world, I'm so grateful I never have to repeat them and that I can speak Tagalog now. 3.) I feel like I have completely changed into a different person in the last year and still have so much more to learn and further to go!
Learning and growing really never ends, at least not in this life. Name tag or not, every single day we have 2 choices. In the words of Taylor Burton, "You either get better or worse today". It's really that simple, each day, hour, minute, and even second we have chances to draw nearer to the Kingdom of Heaven or vice versa. That is why I believe the prophets encourage daily scripture study and consistent weekly sacrament attendance. Because Heavenly Father is not nearly as concerned with where we are on the path of conversation as He is about which way we are facing on that path. I recently read a quote that said, "Never discourage anyone who is making progress, no matter how slow that may be". Regardless of our knowledge, talents, abilities, or even Christ-like attributes, the path to discipleship is constant and consistent way of life. Improving little by little every day. If we can look back 10 or 20 or 30 years later and say that we were more Christ-like then (perhaps on a mission) than now, something is fundamentally wrong with that picture.
The ultimate goal is to become perfected like the Father and the Son. Time has no bounds in the view of our Father in Heaven, thus it matters not whether the day of perfection comes tomorrow or some other time in the eternities. What is important however, is merely the way that we are facing and the steps we are taking now in the moment to get there in the next. The recipe for Christ-like perfection is clear; studying regularly and apply daily.
Elder Krueger T