From: Ethan Cade Brimhall <email@example.com>
Sent: Monday, April 9, 2018 12:23 PM
Sorry guys, not much time this week. We spent a lot of time visiting a recent convert and teaching a haphazard lesson on the Restoration to one of her friends who showed up. He had a ton of questions!
This week, we had the opportunity to watch Sunday afternoon session of general conference where I finally got to see in person the announcement of all the changes everyone is talking about. When Elder Holland came to talk about the new “Ministering” program that is replacing home teaching and visiting teaching, I reflected on my efforts to put the old program into practice in each of the units I have been assigned to. I have continually thought that it seemed a little too easily superficial. The visits could be accomplished easily without any of the real power, the Spirit, being there to effect change in people’s lives. This new program puts emphasis on living worthy of the Spirit to be directed to help when and where and how people need it. It is the Law of Christ version of home teaching.
We had a great zone meeting this week where we were given the challenge to visit all the members of our ward council individually, instigate weekly auxiliary meetings, and get missionary coordination and ward council meetings going. Thankfully, all of the latter three are occurring in the wonderful Njaie Town Ward already, so we just set appointments with each member of the ward council for this coming week.
One thought came to me while teaching a lesson on Wednesday. It is yet another analogy for faith. Faith is like the fuel that gives movement to a car. That car is obedience. Without faith, we will not have the spiritual fuel and power we need to obey our Father in Heaven. Likewise, if you are questioning the strength of your faith, look at your obedience. Your works testify of your faith. The road is the Gospel, keeping our obedience, straight and narrow, to Jesus Christ. The destination is Eternal Life.
That’s it for this week everyone!
Excerpts from other letters…
My companion does not have that much of a desire to work with me. I know he doesn’t like me at all. I’m trying to make jokes and serve him and be patient, and it is working bit by bit as I add to that the immense power of prayer. He is warming up. I had a feeling that I wouldn’t have the easy way out my last transfer haha. This time, as opposed to 18 months ago when I was in a triple companionship with him, I am more humble and willing to do what it takes to love someone I really shouldn’t love from the world’s perspective. This is sort of a blessing I guess. I get to see how much I have really changed!
Yes it is rainy! I started early last month. The early rain has messed up mango season unfortunately.
…Mission life has been such a blessing. I’m sure when I view it from more worldly eyes, it will seem even that much more impressive. But for now, I just view it as a commandment of God that I have tried my best to fulfill, and God in turn has fulfilled His promises to me as I proclaim the truth with the power of the Holy Ghost to His lost children. Africa has been an incredible learning experience. I have gained a different perspective on life that would have been very difficult, if not impossible, to gain without leaving the United States. More than that, though, and perhaps not entirely removed from it, is the spiritual strength I have obtained as I obey God and do His will, being His hands and mouth to the people of Sierra Leone. I know for a certainty that everything I teach is the one and only truth of God. That is what I wish to tell everyone here. I am so excited to see you and the rest of my family and friends! I look forward to May 16th. But I also want to stay here and continue what I am doing! It’s really a conflict of the soul to contemplate leaving what has become my second home.
…We can take comfort in the fact that Jesus Christ overcame the world: sin, death, pain, sickness, sorrow, and every other negative effect of the Fall. What a blessing it is to know God and His mercy.