I'm STILL IN SASKATOON! Phew, I wanted to stay here so badly. AND DID. The members are wonderful and we have people to teach, which is a blessing. I will first share a few of my thoughts and then try to answer some questions you wrote in your email.
Transfers are this week, and Elder Butterfield is going back home to Eagle, Idaho. I am going to miss him so much! He is a great missionary and is an excellent example to me. Kim, he lives on a street called Calidonia, but I do not know your address to tell him yours! I only know the PO box. Even though he will be gone by the time I receive an answer, you should let me know.
I have to say, Saskatchewan has the most beautiful skies I have seen. Every morning is a mixture of oranges, purples and pinks. No wonder they call it the land of Living Skies! Though I do miss mountains, the immense FLAT does have some perks. It is supposed to snow this week. The unseasonably warm weather is supposed to be dying down. Yikes. Snow, here I come. People have been telling me the cold is overdue, but I do not think so!
Sports: What ever happened to Erik Bedard? Are we keeping him? Tell me about what the Mariners do over the offseason please. Fun fact, with the Rangers having been in the World Series, the Mariners are the only team that has not been to the World Series. Sad day.
Cars: Dad, is the new Dodge Charger out? This is driving me insane. I want to see that thing. I have seen a few nice cars here in Saskatoon, like the new BMW 5 series, Chevy Cruze, lots of Jeep Grand Cherokees. Good stuff. I am a missionary, but I can still like cars and be obedient and do all that I am supposed to do. Do not think less of me!
Ok now getting to the spiritual stuff. I am reading Jesus the Christ and following it in the New Testament. I am really beginning to know the Gospels inside and out! It is very apparent that Christ loves us very much. His most pointed comments are to hypocrites. Mom and Dad, do you remember a question I asked a few years ago, "Why does it appear that Jesus came to earth and really changed Judaism to Christianity?" The change is there, but after reading the Sermon on the Mount, the New Law supersedes the Old (Law of Moses). Heavenly Father and Christ expect more of us. Example: the Mosaic Law said "Thou shalt not commit adultery". In the Sermon on the Mount Christ says "if thou looketh upon a women to lust thou hast committed adultery in his heart". More is expected of us now. The concept of "more being expected of us" continues to today. It is our duty as Latter-day Saints to share the restored gospel with all we know. We are expected to live God's commandments. I have found that as I consciously strive to have the Spirit with me more often that I obey God's commandments and am happier. EVERYTHING makes sense. The Gospel does not, NEVER, contradicts itself. Not in the Book of Mormon, not in the Bible. If a passage of scripture does, it is the fault of man, not God. For example, John 1:18 claims that no man has ever seen God. That contradicts what Exodus says about Moses seeing God. That is a fault of man, not God's fault. I am not meaning to rail the Bible, because as long as it is translated correctly it is true.
Another spiritual insight I had concerned prayer. I may have shared this last week, but it is all good, so its worth hearing again. How great it is to have the opportunity to pray to the Most High! I have always taken this for granted, to a point. The Lord wants to hear from us, and has even commanded us mortals to pray to Him. Considering that we pray to God--to GOD!--and He wants to hear from us, God really loves us. Read Moses 7:38 (maybe 28?) where God is weeping. He sure loves us.
Mom and Dad, you once showed me that you had my baby blessing written out. Is that something that I can have with me please? I would love to read that occasionally. I want to have as many of the blessings that I have had given to me, with me. That way I can be aware of what is expected of me and those blessings can provide something of a pathway for me in my life.
What do I want for Christmas you ask? Pictures! Lots of pictures from back home. I do not necessarily want an album, just the pictures themselves; that way they are easier to transport around. I love the Reeses Pieces bars (haha, inside joke), and the ones with jelly in the middle. Heaven right there, for sure. Oh, and the MoTab CD Come Thou Fount is a good one, if you are still looking for CDs. The 4th track is the best, very spiritual, and it has a harp. I just love the harp I guess!
I pray for Dad every day that he may be guided in his pursuit to find steady, consistent employment that will allow him to support his family, whether in Seattle or not--just steady consistent employment. I love you Mom and Dad.
Yes, I am still teaching those Muslims in their mosque! They bring Tim Hortens doughnuts each visit, which is extra incentive for sure.
And yes, I have been out 3 1/2 months. Time does fly. I am just about to begin my 3rd transfer. Oh, my new companion's name is Elder Fackrell from Cedar City, UT. I hope I touched on everything.
Thanks to all who read this, and for all the letters. Letters are Christmas all year long.
I will try to email a few thoughts to Grandma Jeannette.