Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Aug. 30. 2011

Dear Family,
Happy Anniversary, Mom and Dad. Congratulations! It is good to hear that everything at home is going well. Sorry this letter is a little bit late, but we were busy this morning attending a session at the Newport Beach temple. It was an amazing experience and one that was definitely needed to recharge the batteries. That is crazy to hear about everyone moving to new schools, I guess life moves on for everybody else while I'm gone. Hansen, my team sports teacher was the basketball coach. Coach Johnson was his name, I believe. It is also good to hear that the Rangers are still up on the Angels. I think the hardest part of my mission so far has been having charity for the fans of all the SoCal sports teams. It been pretty tough. On the bright side, I did get to meet a girl that played roller hockey with Bobby Ryan. (Warning: That experience will be best enjoyed by those with an element of National Hockey League knowledge.)
Well onto the serious news, this week has been great. It has been a great week, to see the ward start to get excited about missionary work. They are reaching out to their friends, giving them Book of Mormons, and even inviting them to be taught by us. Unfortunately I am beginning to believe that no one in our ward has friends who live within the ward boundaries. Oh well, we all play for the same team. Phil continues to be great. He is now just weeks away from moving in, and continues to ask us about the church, and what it is like being a missionary. We told him yesterday, that one of us is probably leaving soon, (transfers are next week) and he started tearing up. It was a good testament, that it really is impossible to not love someone whom you serve unselfishly. I also told him about your 30th anniversary this past week, and he asked me what your secret was. I told him it was to have perfect kids like me, but I think he would be interested in hearing the real answer, I think I would too.
We also were able to teach Andres, this week. It was an amazing experience, and he even bore his testimony of the Book of Mormon. We just knew it was going to be a good lesson, when we walked in and the pass along card we gave him was displayed proudly above the tv. Prayers for him would be appreciated though, because he and his family are going through a pretty rough time financially.
We also met with Peter again this week. Apparently he has a member friend that he works with, whom told him about all of the commandments and the blessings that come from it. So Peter is in the midst of trying to quit coffee, and getting Sundays off of work. His faith is amazing, and his willingness to change has to be the best thing in the world to see.
This week, I was reminded of how much of a joy it is to serve others, and help them come closer to the Savior. It has been just a great reminder of what is really important in life. I have also realized the truth of the scripture in D&C 18. "How great the joy of one soul that repents", or whatever it is. (I obviously am still a greenie, If i can't quote all of Doctrine and Covenants). It is true though, the great joy of missionary work is seeing and helping people change their lives for the better, by bringing their wills in accordance, to our all powerful and loving Heavenly Father. The baptisms are just the cherry on top. I love being a missionary, and serving others. This church is true, and Jesus Christ is the Saviour of the world. Hope everyone has an amazing week. Love you all.
Elder Blake
PS: Tell Sister Sedgwick if you see her that Sister Gonzales says hi, and is doing great.

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