Cody portrait

Cody portrait

Monday, June 20, 2011

Teaching A lot Thanks to Great Weather...and Time for A Little Golf!

Bore Da!

First of all, Happy Fathers Day to the greatest father in the world!

This week has been a crazy one, with me being on two exchanges in two different areas of Wales. One of them being with Elder Eggers, reunited at last. Oh, it was so good to work with him again. And also with Elder Lintusaari from Finland. This mission has got a lot of diversity I tell you what.

Elder Eggers area (Bangor) has to be the most gorgeous place I have been to. We contacted this university student and found a place to sit down and teach. Well, the place so happened to be a giant hill overlooking a huge valley of the ocean. What a sight!

Serving in a beautiful place like this is such a good experience. It's crazy all the different locations I have been a part of. From the suburbs of Manchester to the hustle and bustle of the one and only Liverpool, and now in the laid-back ocean side town of Rhyl. I love the changes.

We have been teaching a lot, and what a blessing it has been. Again we have been blessed with double digit new investigators. Credit goes to the good weather, and willingness of the people here.

A good chunk of them come from teenagers...we have been teaching in a hotel living room,  a couple of them live in the hotel, and the others are their friends. It's a good sight to see some teenagers wanting to explore a belief in God and their purpose in life.

Update on Liam:

We took him to FHE and tea last Monday with the previous Bishop of the ward. We had a lot of good conversation on the church and how a belief in God blesses our lives. We then watched "Prophet of the Restoration" with him, and he loved it. The only problem is for him to BELIEVE it. He still has his ways of saying, "I just can't believe in God. I keep trying, but nothing happens." 

We found out his concern to be that he hasn't been praying specifically about the Book of Mormon to be true. We explained that specific questions bring specific answers.  So we committed him to have kneeling prayers, and pray specifically about the Book of Mormon each time. 

But Liam is so good!  If you only knew how good of a man he is. He is one of the nicest people I know. He just has been caught up in the traps of addiction, which has caused negative emotions for himself, taking away his self-confidence. 

As we have been meeting with him, his attitude, and most importantly his "hope" has increased. You can just see it in his face as we meet with him! I know that has come because he has been striving to live the gospel.

I am grateful for the power of the message we share. It truly changes lives for the better, and gives them hope. How grateful I am to have it in my life!

We are headed out golfing with him this afternoon. It should be fun, and I'll definitely be taking pictures. (Dallin be sure to take notes...)

This week we had Liam and Amy come to church. Amy is a YSA-aged investigator who we have taught twice. Once on the spot in the street, and once in the church. She has a lot of "deep" questions, but she is a stalwart when it comes to keeping her word...keeping appointments, coming to church, etc.

We also met a less-active member (we meet a lot of them, some 150+ in the Rhyl ward) that was baptised in Ashton 15 years ago. We taught him on the spot, and invited him to church. He managed to wage a deal, that if he came to church we had to go to his new one. 

Well, we complied knowing that one of our investigators would be there, and not full thinking he would show up...

We were wrong, he showed up early, and stayed the entire time! It was so good! So we stood to our word and went with him to his Pentecostal church.  It was a lot different to anything that I am used to, but a good experience to see how others worship...

This week we also got a text on Tuesday inviting us to speak on Sunday. We willingly accepted and I was given the topic of "repentance."

I started my talk saying how as a kid the word "repentance" used to scare me (haha). I don't think I really understood what that meant until my teens. I then transitioned into how now I see it as a tremendous blessing. Repentance is tied in directly to "change." Dad's quote he sent me says it best, "Change is the essence of life. Be willing to surrender what you are for what you could become." That's what repentance is all about. Shedding the "natural man" and bit by bit becoming our "best selves." Repentance is that opportunity to receive that forgiveness from our mistakes that keep us from "becoming."

A big part of repentance is humility. We have to be honest enough with ourselves to see how we can improve. Instead of falling into the trap of "All is well in Zion" or complacency.
When we are humble, we bring ourselves to rely on the Lord. Which is where we are able to find who he wants us to be... not as a "mold" into something else, but as our best selves!

Well off to GOLF! A par 3 course for 5 pounds!


Elder Eliason

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