Good morning everyone!
Thank you for all the letters and updates. It seems like every week is filled with something new and fun, and I can’t wait to be there doing those things with you!
We had a good week here in Kranj, although compared to last week’s email, this one will be pretty simple. It’s been raining for more than a week straight (welcome to Slovenia!) and that tends to slow things down a bit. The rain can’t stop great things from happening though!
(This is what tracting in Slovenia looks like. Well… sometimes haha)
This was right as they were setting up. The interview will be on TV today, and I’ll send you all the link as soon as I have it!
One of the highlights we had this week was a visit we had from Elder Charles, who is the area authority for this part of Europe. He did a mission tour with President Grant, and part of the mission tour included a zone conference in Ljubljana. On Thursday we all had the chance to go down there and be taught for a number of hours by this wonderful servant of the Lord. He and his wife were just amazing, and I learned a lot from the both of them. They are both converts, and come from families with members that are Muslim, Jehovah’s Witness, Greek Orthodox, and Church of Scotland. Talk about an amazing conversion story!
(Elder Hughes and I took some glamour shots in Zagreb…)
(We were using a whiteboard in the town square to talk to people, but it ended up just turning into a place for kids to draw)
(Taking the train back to Kranj after a day in Zagreb. If you can’t tell, we were EXHAUSTED haha)
The conference was wonderful, and then on Saturday we went with the sisters to Zagreb for Mission Leadership Council (once a month, all of the zone leaders and sister training leaders gather in Zagreb to discuss the progress in the mission). Elder Charles ran most of the meeting, and once again, I learned a ton. Toward the end of the meeting they asked the leadership from each country to go and make a plan for their respective countries for the rest of 2015, and I thought I’d share a portion of that plan.
We called it our plan to become “a zone mighty in prayer” and the things we talked about are applicable to non-missionaries as well.
One of my favorite stories from the Book of Mormon is the story of Enos. The entire book of Enos is only one chapter long, but it contains one of the greatest examples of prayer that exists. He starts out in verses 1 to 4 by setting the stage of his prayer. One of my favorite parts comes from verse 2, which says “And I will tell of you the wrestle which I had before God, before I received a remission of my sins.”
What does it means that Enos’ prayer was a “wrestle” before God? Can we all comfortably describe our prayers as “wrestles” before the Lord? I know I can’t haha!
I’m not sure if we always devote the time, attention, and energy we should to our prayers. As I’ve been on my mission, I’ve come to learn more and more how important prayer really is though. There are SO many things that are outside of our control, but prayer is the one thing that is completely in our power to control. Referring to missionary work, our District President in Slovenia made the comment that “the battle is won or lost in prayer” and asked us if we pray like Nephi, who said “And I pray continually for them by day, and mine eyes water my pillow by night, because of them; and I cry unto my God in faith, and I know that he will hear my cry.” Are we devoting the same amount of time and attention to our communication with our Father in Heaven? I know that I can personally do a lot better.
This week I’ve started to do a few things to improve the quality of my prayers. I always have something to write on nearby while I pray so that I can record impressions, I make sure I’m wide awake and not falling asleep when praying, etc. I’m seeing a huge difference from these changes.
This week I would invite all of us to take a look at our personal prayers and see what we can do to improve them. The power of prayer is one of the most underappreciated powers that we have, and I can promise you will see a difference as your prayers improve. Let’s all work to become mighty in prayer!
I love you all so much, and can’t wait to hear from you soon.