Hi Family! Hi Friends!
It's a wonderful day!
I love the smell of fall leaves, crisp-- cool air, and bonfires (there's this house on the way to the church from our apartment that is always burning something... hm... *shrug*). It's a great time for President Lattin to come down and visit us humble folks in Ivano-Frankivsk!
A great miracle happened in our branch -- President Lattin called a new Branch President (the now President Bantsov). He's the father of that family that moved here from Donetsk not too long ago, and it's really refreshing, because he's seen a very nice ward being run back home. He's got some experience in how things need to be run, and has already readjusted some of problems here in the branch. Things are starting to run a lot more smoothly! The Lord is showering out blessings on this little city!
Part of the coolness came when we went into the room and were about to set Brother Bantsov apart as president. President Lattin gave the most amazing setting apart blessing, and I had the privelage of translating it. It's incredible how much the Lord loves his saints. I was very impressed with the love and spirit that was present in that room.
President Lattin also stayed to watch general conference in English with me, Elder Asay (one of the zone leaders), and one random member who doesn't know english, but had already watched it in Ukrainian, and thought it would be cool (Brother Fooshtay is a pretty funny guy).
I got pulled out for an interview with President, and we talked for a little bit about some things that have to do with service, being a missionary, and about my Trainee -- Elder Rubliuk. It was very enlightening, and I realized that there is a lot of improvement on my part, and a lot more that I could sacrifice. Most of all, I recieved council on a pretty big question of mine, which was brought up in Conference as well.
CONFERENCE WAS AWESOMELY INCREDIBLE!!
I didn't even get to watch a lot of great talks -- but I loved every second of it!
Oh, and as a special treat, the missionaries all prepared Fajitas for the members to eat inbetween the sunday sessions. We volunteered to prepare the chicken. 6 1/2 lbs. of just straight up chicken breasts... (Okay, in retrospect is not really a lot, but when you're walking down the street with that bad boy in a bag, it seems a lot bigger!) It was super tasty though, and everyone did a really good job. The members loved it, and it really improved our relationships with the members here. The spirit in this city is starting to change, and MANY big miracles are on the way. We had a man call us during personal study today to set up a meeting with us tomorrow. We also called a man last night, and he ended up watching conference because of it. The work is moving foreward my friends.
I'd just like to give you a thought that has been burning up energy in my mind for a little bit... it's about humility.
In the Book of Mormon, we are given a formula for becoming happier, wiser, more confident before God, and all around better people. In the book of Mosiah, Chapter 4, verse 11, we read about how we must understand our own nothingness -- we ought to remember that God has given us EVERYTHING, and no matter what we offer up to him, we're still just giving him back something he gave us -- and we are to be humble. We are given, in verse 12 a promise....
12 And behold, I say unto you that if ye do this ye shall always rejoice, and be filled with the love of God, and always retain aremission of your sins; and ye shall grow in the knowledge of the glory of him that created you, or in the knowledge of thatwhich is just and true.Wow. Fair enough, right?
I love you all, and I'm very grateful for your support and love. Please pray for the people and saints of Ivano-Frankivsk. Your prayers really do help!
P.S. I stared into the eyes of President Klebingat once... and lived. ;)
Seriously though, he's an intense guy. Get that fitness plan going folks!