Monday, September 28, 2015

September 28, 2015


Did you see the eclipse last night?  We had a lesson outside so that we could see it.

Thanks for taking care of my facebook account while I am gone.  I hope that we will be getting facebook and ipads soon.  It would be perfect if it happened in a few months.  At that point I would have less than six months left and I understand at that point there is less pressure to buy the ipad and I'll be able to just borrow it.  I won't have much use for a tablet after the mission.

2nd J is gone.  It seems that he was never actually that sincere.  Apparently his plan was to fool everyone into thinking that he had quit smoking and get baptized.  When it came time to bear his testimony afterward he would instead propose to one of the sister missionaries.  If she said yes then he would quit smoking and live the commandments.  His plan failed when he got high and told his plan to his member friend and she kicked him out.  The sisters were so shocked when we told them what was going on. We're really disappointed but we could sort of see it coming.

Addictions are the worst.  J and K are doing great right now though. They have gone about a week so they should be through the worst of it.  It is always scary though.  I've seen people go years without smoking and then pick it back up again.  Things would be so much easier without word of wisdom problems.  One lady we're teaching heard that we don't drink coffee and flipped the crud out.  She nearly fainted.  It was funny but still, these sort of things take control so that even an earnest desire to obey God is forgotten and takes a backseat to the addiction.  The effects of the addiction can be lifelong too. 

Yep..four baptisms.  That is our goal for this next transfer.  We want J and K and Ms. M to be baptized and one other person, we don't know who yet.  It will take a miracle but that is a number that we can strive for and will push us to be our best.  I just hope I'll be here to see it.  We have transfers this week.  I think I'll most likely stay put, I still haven't been here that long, but I have a lingering suspicion that I'll get moved.

Prayer really is amazing.  It is one of those most basic things but it has the greatest impact.  We are supposed to do more than just pray in the morning and evening and at meals though.  "Yea, and when you do not cry unto the Lord, let your hearts be full, drawn out in prayer unto him continually for your welfare, and also for the welfare of those who are around you." (Alma 34:27)  We are always to be praying, always in communion with God.  As I read about the life of Christ it seems that he had a heart drawn out in prayer continually.  He always inquired as to the Father's will and was constantly receiving guidance through the Spirit in response.  During the Atonement there seem to have been a couple times that the Father's presence was withdrawn and Jesus immediately noticed a difference.  On the cross he cried "My God my God, why hast thou forsaken me?". If we are in the habit of always asking what God's will is and earnestly obeying any direction we receive we will draw so much closer to God and have a better understanding of him.  As soon as we stop our prayers to him and get out of that habit then we leave ourselves open the influence of the Devil.  We wander off and are lost in the mists of darkness.  
Thanks for teaching me so much and always supporting me. I love you.
Elder Stapley

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