Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Missionary Fun

Another great week! I am now in a trio with Elder Mahoney and Elder Johansen. It is such a great experience serving with both of my brothers here in the Brush Creek Ward. I love being able to enjoy my mission by seeing the tender mercies and blessings that the Lord has given us. Many people believe that missionary work is "hard". As missionaries, there are challenges and trials that we come across, but who doesn't have those? Life is filled with them, but the Savior has promised us that He will send angels to bear us up, and He is always true to His word. I think missionary work should really be called "Missionary Fun", because it is fun, and we feel a special joy in our hearts as we serve others and act as worthy servants of the Lord, Jesus Christ.
Last week was my birthday! I spent it with a wonderful Fijian family who are members of our ward, and they cooked a huge banquet for me and friends. When it comes to food, they don't mess around! They cooked up a TON of food and it truly was an amazing experience helping them cook the dinner! It was so much fun … we not only celebrated my birthday, but that of the mom and one of the daughters. I love this family so much and love serving them. I have even picked up some Fijian words, like "Vinaka" ("Thank you"), "Sangalanga” (“No worries"), and "Toom pagali” (You're crazy")!! I say that last one to her a lot, haha! It is so much fun being around this wonderful family and seeing that, even though they don't have many material blessings, their love for one another runs deep. There is a special spirit in that little two bedroom apartment and I feel like I am at home when I go there. They have their struggles, but I can tell that they love one another. They remind me of my family because their five kids are close in age and close in relationship. It has been a blessing for me, because I feel like I was meant to help them and they were meant to be in my life for a very special reason and purpose. I have been able to see for myself how the gospel truly can change and bless families. At the end of our dinner, we knelt down as a family with them and with other friends that came for our birthday dinner. In that humble circumstance, we held hands and I offered up a prayer to Heavenly Father. It was a powerful experience for me to feel the spirit during that prayer … to be able to bless their home with the spirit and to bless them with all that they needed, both temporally and spiritually. My love has grown for all of my people here and I know that I am making a difference here in Santa Rosa. I know that I am doing what the Savior would do if He were here. I have found that when I bring the gospel to families and others who are looking for it … a special bond and eternal love is created. Who could call such experiences “work”, when they are so very special and FUN?
Los Quiero Mucho,
Elder Vance

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