First of all, my Thanksgiving dinner that Tom provided was BRILLIANT! He made us so much food and it was so good. We had lots of veg, mashed potatoes (they call them creamy potatoes here) turkey and stuffing with cranberries, oh it was so good. I'm glad to hear that you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving. I was writing a postcard to Casey this morning and I was just remembering those old family Thanksgiving dinners we would have with most of the family gathered together. I kind of miss those days, but oh well, things change and life goes on.
It's hard to think that Sarah will be almost two years when I get home. And Craig is in the Branch Presidency now? That Branch has had so many changes since I've been gone. It's a whole new machine, now.
For the past few weeks, I've been really feeling that I need to focus on the Book of Mormon more. Then last week in our Zone Meeting, we had a lot of instruction on how to use the Book of Mormon more effectively. That is my focus now. I need to use the Book of Mormon the way that it is supposed to be used. The thing is, whatever concern people may have about the Church, the Book of Mormon will resolve that concern. All I need to do is help people to understand that if they will read, ponder, and pray about the Book of Mormon (just like it says in the last two paragraphs of the introduction), they WILL receive a witness from God that it is indeed true. Then stems from that all the truth and revelation that the Church has. It is a simple equation:
Read + Ponder + Pray to God in the name of Christ to know that it is true = Witness
Simple as that. I just need to get the book to people and get them to read it and pray about it and then help them to understand how the Spirit will witness to people. That has been my focus lately.
I know that the Book of Mormon is true and that, as President Benson stated, "we hardly fathom the power of the Book of Mormon, nor the divine role it must play, nor the extent to which it must be moved." The equation is specific and it requires absolute compliance.
Anyway, one of the things that I have been doing for personal study each morning is what I like to call, "Ask the Book of Mormon a Question." I will ponder in my mind a "question of the soul" that someone might have, specifically those who I will be seeing that day. When a question comes, I will seek the answer in the Book of Mormon. This has blown my mind, and helped me to understand that the Book of Mormon indeed can answer the "questions of the soul" as Preach my Gospel states in Chapter 5.
For example, the question I asked this morning was an interesting one that came to mind, with an equally interesting answer. The question was: How can I keep my loved one(s) away from drugs/drink/sin? The answer that I found was in Helaman 3:29. This tells me that if I want to keep away from the snares of Satan, or keep my loved ones away, they need to "lay hold upon the word of God," or in other words, they need to "feast upon the words of Christ." I love how simple the Gospel of Jesus Christ is!
Anyway, the answers to "Ask Elder Trawick a Question" ;) this week are:
How is your work going?
The work is going well. We have two fantastic new investigators that we found last week. One is a young man in his 20's called Jason. He is what we would refer to as a "Kingdom Builder" which basically means I could see him as the next Branch President. I'm really excited about him.
You said you were challenging people first thing. How is that working out?
That went alright. We were definitely being blessed for obedience, but sometimes it just isn't as appropriate as others. We just have to use our judgement.
I haven't had a chance to find out for sure, but they seem very open and friendly.
I hope you have a nice place to stay that is warm and safe. Would like some pics, are you out of space?
The house that we are in is very warm most of the time. I was going to send the pictures I took this week, but I left my camera. I might try to send them a bit later today, however.
Do you have snow yet?
Yes, it has been snowing for the last two days and will continue until Friday.
Ireland just got bailed out by the EU so things should calm down a bit.
Well, I'm not in the Republic anymore, I'm in the UK, so it's not affecting here that much, but I hear there are protests and things going on in Dublin right now... Exciting!
Anyway, I hope that you have a wonderful week. I love you all so much and pray for you often.