Six Months huh? It is strange to think that I have been out on my mission for six months. Sometimes it feels as though I have been in Germany for years and years, but then there are other times when it feels as though it was just yesterday that I was at home doing normal “at home” stuff. I have had so many experiences and have grown so much. Sometimes I don’t believe that, but then I look at my journal and see my progression laid out before me. I don’t want to take up to much time talking about that because we must not live in the past. “No man, having put his hand to the plough, and looking back, is fit for the kingdom of God” Luke 9:62.
One part of the Book of Mormon that I recently read, really touched me. Alma has just voiced the wish of his heart, to be an angel and spread the gospel with the trump of God. But he corrects himself and in verse nine of Alma 29 he says, “I know that which the Lord hath commanded me, and I glory in it. I do not glory of myself, but I glory in that which the Lord hath commanded me; yea, and this is my glory, that perhaps I may be an instrument in the hands of God to bring some soul to repentance; and this is my joy”. My glory and my joy must come from fulfilling my calling not only now but throughout the rest of my life. I made that promise long ago when I accepted baptism and I was set apart to serve full time about six months ago. There are some times when I feel that I want to do something else or that the work is boring or I am tempted not to work as hard as I should, but I have learned to respond as Nehemiah, “I am doing a great work, so that I cannot come down”. (Nehemiah 6:3)
I have experienced the power that comes from following the counsel of my leaders. I felt for a time that no matter what I did, I still wasn’t good enough, but I have felt the joy and peace of Christ’s atonement, and I know that I am doing the right thing. As I have striven to become more Christ-like, I have seen my attitude change, and my own abilities have been magnified in His strength.
I don’t have really great experiences from this week to share. I have actually been very focused and have not had to worry about what to say or how to talk to someone. I just do it and the rest follows.
Hopefully that wasn’t too long for you to read. There also might be some spots that don’t make sense because I snagged them from my email to my mission president.
Love you all,
Elder J Billings