Monday, June 30, 2014

Sometimes, It rains. So what?

Sometimes, it is rainy.

This is a fact.
Especially this week, it has been rainy.  

One problem with rain is that (as I think I've explained before), it makes people not want to be on the streets, which is the only place that we actually find people to talk with.  The weird thing is, that it has been rainy on and off throughout the past few days.  We go inside, it rains, we go outside, it is sunny.  As we are walking along, in the sun-shiney city of Lutsk, clouds gather in a matter of minutes and BAM, it rains again!  It's an incredible phenomenon. Somehow, the native people can sense it coming on... before the signs manifest themselves.  It's like a superpower that they all have.  I do not have this power.  It makes for a rather soggy day.
This has made our job really interesting.  It has not, however, stopped us from talking to a lot of great people, handing out copies of the Book of Mormon, and trying to set up meetings every single day this week.  That's what most missionaries are doing each and every day, and I'm going to tell you, it's something that's really grown on me.  
I've learned a lot about hoping for miracles this past week.  One of the things I've learned is that Heavenly Father doesn't always provide the miracles we want.  That's something that can seem kind of hard.  We may pray with our whole heart and soul that something will work out the way we imagined it... and then poof -- It just doesn't.  This doesn't mean that miracles don't happen. 

I want to tell you all something.

Miracles are happening around us every single day.  The fact that I am living, breathing, and smiling is a miracle to me sometimes.  The fact that Heavenly Father let an 18 year-old boy travel half-way across the world in order to try and tell some of his brothers and sisters that God loves them and has a plan for them to be truly happy forever; that's a miracle.  The warmth and love that has grown inside of me for my Savior, and for my Father in Heaven, that's a miracle.  On top of all of that, I have seen people take on baptisms; People have accepted commitments to change their lives; People have faced and overcome challenges in their own lives.  All of this, because God lets us choose it.  

Some people say that the Gospel confines us, but it really defines us.  It sets us free to become the best we could ever become.  God has a plan for us, and he knows exactly which miracles we need.  His plan involves a personal improvement plan for each and every one of us.

It's a miracle.

So maybe this week has been a little rainy.  Maybe I've even gotten a little wet.  The sun is still there,  shining to let us know that it's still day time!  Eventually, the day is going to come to an end, and we'll look back on this day and have to take it for what it is worth.  I want to have given everything I have.   The trick, I suppose, comes from not waiting for the storm to pass, but learning how to dance in the rain.

If you haven't read the talk, Your 4-minutes, from this past general conference, now would be a great time to do that!

I love you all very much, and I'm glad to say that I know that My Savior not ONLY lives, but that He loves me and gave me the greatest gift I could ever imagine... 
He's the greatest miracle, and I don't think I could express the fullness of my feelings in words.

So I'll leave you with my love, and my support!
I'm praying for you back home!
I love you all so much, and I'm privelaged to have you as a part of my life!

З Богом,

Elder LeBaron

Picture: This is an old woman who sells bird feed on Center Street here.  She's always smiling when I see her.

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