Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Forty-Fifth Letter

November 22, 2010
Dear Family,

I love reading your letters every week. It really fills me with the spirit and a deep love for you. Thank you for what you shared in your letters. This week was a pretty good one for us here in Kaunas. Last Monday we went to Vilnius and stayed overnight there and had Zone Conference the next morning. We had to be there really early so that's why we stayed the night before. I feel like I'm still recovering from that because I didn't really get much sleep cause I was on the floor. But oh well. The Conference was great and I learned a lot there! President Schwitzer, the Europe East area president, a member of the Seventies Spoke to us for about three hours. Holy Cow it was so cool! He blew my mind with all of the things that he said! He talked a little about missionary work, but a lot of it was about the Book of Mormon and also about conversion and sanctification. He gave us some cool insights or prove that the Book of Mormon is true. Like the story of Ammon teaching Kind Lamoni. When Ammon comes in, King Lamoni asks what he wants and if he would marry one of his daughters. Why would he offer one of his daughters? Well if you really think about it, Lamoni was a king. What do kings do? They want to protect their land and all that good stuff. This is all what President Schwitzer said... He probably had spies and knew that Ammon was the son of a king! So he wanted to join his kingdom with the Nephite kingdom cause every king knows that another king wont attack his grandchildren! This is exactly what a king would do isn't it? How could Joseph Smith know that? He didn't have a lot of education when he translated the Book of Mormon. Anyways, President Dance had spoken right before President Schwitzer and had mentioned the story of Ammon and so President Schwitzer just pulled that stuff out and was like, "I want to show you all something really cool that I just barely realized," and he taught us what I just shared with you. Hope you understood. :) It was way cool. He taught us a lot of other things about the Book of Mormon that were way cool and then he taught us about becoming personally converted. It still doesn't totally make sense to me, but the spirit was so strong and I knew that what he was saying was true. He talked a lot about conversion and then talked a lot about personally sanctifying ourselves. He said that by making personal covenants with the Lord we start to sanctify ourselves and become more godly. He talked a lot about making covenants with the Lord and that makes us better and it brings great blessings. He asked if any of us had had any experiences with making personal covenants with the Lord that have blessed our lives and instantly the story of when we were living in Grandma and Grandpa Lambson's home came to me. The story where Mom had all of us kids get down on our knees and we promised the Heavenly Father that we would read our scriptures every day without missing in hopes that He would help dad finish his theses. That was a personal covenant that we made with God and miracles happened. I can still remember that prayer that we offered while kneeling in that front living room of Grandma and Grandpa's house. Thank you Mom, for having us do that. So I shared the story and President Schwitzer stood there for a minute and then said to me, as if no one else was in the room... "That was a miracle that happened, but think about how that experience has blessed you in your life since that day." I know that that experience helped make me who I am today and it taught me to be faithful in my scripture reading. It helped put me on a path to be a faithful member all of my life. So there were miracles that came from us making that covenant with God in the sense that Dad finished his theses and we were helped financially... But what a blessing it was for all of us that participated in making that covenant. THAT is personal sanctification! President Schwitzer came up to me afterwards and thanked me for sharing that story. I'm really glad that I did. Ok, so simply, I learned that we need to always be making personal covenants with God to improve ourselves and then He will bless us so much if we will keep those covenants. I hope that all made sense and that it means as much to you as it did to me. It was a really cool conference. Probably one of the best spiritual highlights of my mission. So, for the rest of the week there wasn't really that much more that happened. Zydrunas won’t answer our calls and I just don't know what to do about him. When he is drunk he wants to meet with us and change his life, but when he is sober he doesn't what anything to do with us. I don't know... it's frustrating, but hopefully it will work out. So, that's pretty much it for this week. Thursday is transfers and I really don't know what is going to happen! I could possibly train but I doubt that I will. I don't feel ready to train cause I'm not that good with the language or the best teacher, but we'll see what happens. I'll let you know next week.

If I am still here in Kaunas on Thursday we will be going to the Morrells for a little while to have a thanksgiving dinner so that should be fun. Some real thanksgiving food. I wouldn't know how to make a thanksgiving dinner! So we will probably bring something simple to add to the meal. I'm excited for that. I will write next week! I love you guys! Have a great week!!

Love, Elder Leishman

313 days down, 417 days to go!