From: Ethan Cade Brimhall [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]
Sent: Monday, February 5, 2018 8:35 AM
Great story from the week:
We had a powerful lesson with a recent convert family. The man and woman are actually not married so it’s a little sketchy but we’re working on it. We got there with the other Gbondo Town elders that were handing them off to us and we saw the man drinking poyo, which is an African alcoholic fruit drink. We had a super nice spiritual lesson about the atonement with his wife, children, and friend there and they were so into it. He works at the border to Liberia and is rarely home, so this was some quality family time. At the peak of the good feelings, I asked the guy about his baptism and how symbolic it was. Then, as prompted by the Spirit and in boldness that is usually outside my comfort zone, I asked the guy to pour out his poyo drink right then. He was a little shocked but he did it! I asked him to remember the symbolism of this day like he remembers the symbolism of his baptism and commit to keeping the Word of Wisdom the rest of his days. I hope that he sticks to that promise.
We made chili and mashed potatoes this week as a special-for-no-reason dinner. Absolutely delicious.
I got a hammock and a sweet long sleeve hooded poncho-type thing I asked one lady here to weave together. I enjoy it every day.
My mother asked me to share my testimony of the Book of Mormon, so here I will:
I am a child of record and I have been pretty good at keeping the commandments for most of my life, but I have not really had a testimony of the Book of Mormon for very long. As I entered the mission field, I constantly read the part of my patriarchal blessing about my mission. Among other things, it tells me that I will bear a powerful testimony of the Book of Mormon. At that stage in my life, I really didn’t feel like I had one. I decided that I would take my mission president’s advice and read it every day, sending him in my weekly email a snippet of what I learned that week from the Book of Mormon. It really didn’t take long for God to answer my prayers for a special witness of its divinity. I scarcely breached 1 Nephi when it came to me. I was reading chapter 4 where Nephi is commanded to kill Laban in order to secure the brass plates and I came across verse 13 which says: “Behold the Lord slayeth the wicked to bring forth his righteous purposes. It is better that one man should perish than that a nation should dwindle and perish in unbelief.” I thought about how that verse correlates well with the verse in Matthew 5 that says “And if thy right hand offend thee, cut it off, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.” As I pondered about the similarity and synergy between these two books of scripture, an electrifying feeling lit up my entire body as the Spirit spoke to me saying “it is true”. From that point on, the Book of Mormon has been my main tool of conversion and teaching. I love how plainly the doctrines of the gospel are laid out in it, and I love even more how the Bible supports every one of them.
It’s true, guys. It really is.