Hello there again! I absolutely cannot believe that it is already August. My one month mark will be this week! I have been here for four weeks, and I am nowhere close to fluent in Norwegian, but I am accomplishing so much. I am here not to learn how to talk to the people of Norway, but to become fluent in the language of the Spirit. Think on that for a moment. If I can learn, and I mean really understand, how the Spirit speaks in my life, I will be enabled to learn Norwegian through the gifts of the Spirit and, more importantly, to do the will of the Father. I know that this same principle applies to all of our lives. It is so important for us to learn to listen to the promptings of the Holy Ghost.
Even though we are here as full-time missionaries of the Lord, we still manage to have a lot of fun while we are learning the Work of Salvation. Here are a few things of note from the past week:
- It was my little sister Madison's birthday this last Friday! She turned 11 years old, and she is just the best ever. I just wanted her to know I have been thinking about her.
- My aunt seems to have taken my comment about electric toothbrushes last week as a cry in the darkness for help, and sent me an Angry Birds electronic toothbrush. My teeth are very thankful for the added brushing power it has brought.
- Other than that, I have sat in a classroom all day every day, studying Norwegian and the gospel and learning so much, but nothing all that interesting has really happened. Thank you all for the letters, they are very much appreciated and sought after. A letter can light up a missionary's day like nothing else can. It is so good to know that people care.
So, in my scripture studies this week I found a scripture which stated that it is only after many trials and much tribulation that we are made instruments in the Lord's hands. I thought this was so interesting, and it really touched a part of me that probably wouldn't have paid attention if I wasn't here on a mission. Nothing about this is easy. I am truly in the refiner's fire, and I know that it is only going to get hotter, but that is okay, because the Lord is making me a tool in His hands. That is my calling - to do the Lord's work as HE would have it done. Not as I, in my incredibly small understanding of the big picture, think that it should happen. The Master is building His kingdom, and I have been blessed to be a part of the work. Is that not enough to satisfy my soul? Why should I care what job the Lord has in mind for me? Is it the tool's job to worry about whether it is used to build the foundation or to apply the finishing touches to the uppermost tower? Is it the saw's place to object when the Master Carpenter decides that it must be a little sharper, a little more refined, in order to get the job done?
And neither should the drill request to see the finished masterpiece when all is said and done. We are building the Kingdom of God under His direction, and who cares what kind of a tool we are? I personally don't believe that a hammer has enough knowledge or wisdom to request that it should be used as a saw. The Lord knows what we are capable of accomplishing, and He will help us get to that point, but we must be willing to pay the price and submit ourselves to His will. I may not see the fruits of my labors in Norway in 2 years, or in 50 years, or perhaps not even in this lifetime at all. But I am building the Kingdom of God, and, if I do as He commands, I can rest assured that my work is going to be worthwhile. Our ultimate goal in this life is to come unto Christ and be perfected in Him, and dost that not begin with doing the will of the Lord? I submit that it does, and I pray that we all can begin this path. The Lord has declared, "What manner of men ought ye to be? Even as I am." May we all come unto Christ and become useful tools in His hands.
I love you all, and I hope to hear from you soon! Vi ses!