Feb 26, 2013

Trent's email 2/20/13

Hey Mom and Dad and everyone else.
I´ve learned a lot this week about focusing on the most important thing, and the importance of having a good attitude.  Often, the question shouldn´t be, "What´s wrong," it´s "How can it be better?"  I think it´s a lesson that will help me in personal progress and family life and leadership skills as well.  Furthermore, I´ve learned about the importance of the Spirit.  I really can´t teach the gospel.  I can do my best to find logic in what we teach, but it´s not up to me to make it make sense to people.  God´s in charge of that.  If He wanted it to be a logic thing, he would make all the High Priests go out and teach, instead of stupid 20 year old boys and girls.  It was humbling and inspiring to figure that out--I´ve been able to focus a lot more on my personal prayers and the power of the scriptures than on my own logic.  I like it.  Less of a headache, and more strengthening.  It´s been a challenge for me my whole life to depend on the Spirit, so it´s wonderful to have an opportunity to strengthen that relationship and follow those promptings.  I´ve grown a lot.  I think this week will be even better. 
We had some interesting experiences this week.  Friday was a very long day with lots of contacting.  But, on Saturday, we had the pleasure of hearing Elder Neil L. Andersen and his wife bear us their testimonies, and then Elder Ronald Rasband of the Presidency of the Seventy and President Anderson of the Area and their wives gave us some really powerful experiences in their visit to the mission.  We were able to learn a lot about how to keep your chin up after a hard day.  We applied it well on Sunday, too, because it was also a bit difficult.  I´m not sure when we´ll get the progress that´s expected of us, but I won´t stop working until I´m done with my mission, so even if I never baptize another soul, I´ll be able to say I did my best.
I´ve also been planning activities, like usual.  I like planning.  I like being involved in things.  I like it when activities I plan run smoothly.
Glad to hear that Grammy´s getting better!  She does so much good when she´s got energy, it´s great to know that she´s up and doing projects again.  I hope you´re enjoying your weather.  My companion is willing to go running with me in the mornings, so we´ve been doing that.  Today we played basketball, too.  I´ve been doing lots of strength exercises, and I think I´m probably in the best physical shape I have been since sophomore year, when I was swimming every day.  I like it. 
I need to hang out with our cousins more.  Jessica writes me every once in a while with updates about the family.  She´s cool.  I hope Melanie´s happy.  I don´t know why I never hung out with them.  All kinds of people are gonna be married when I get home... how weird.  Let me know what happens at the open house.  Kelcie is graduating.  Wow.
Go Beamer!  Congo.  Wow.  Machete mission.  According to Elder Rasband, the announcement for how many missions they´re gonna open this year is "going to blow your mind."  He didn´t tell us how many, though.  The mission is currently at 160 missionaries.  In June it will be at 200.  In October, they´ll have about 250.  And maybe half of them will be sisters.  Big changes going down.  No wonder, with everyone and their dog getting a mission call out there.  I´m excited for Ashley!
Elder Fabián is good.  We´re learning a lot from each other, I think.  He´s helping in my not-being-so-critical all the time (I´ve been studying patience and charity a lot as well).  And he´s a good teacher.  He´s new in the mission, six months.  He mopped and swept the house today, so I´m happy.
I´m glad Becca´s getting more responsible.  Reading all the Liahona´s, it´s impossible not to think about how to raise children.  I was impressed this month, there´s an article about "How to raise resilient children," and I realized that you two applied lots of those things with me, and I feel as though I´m pretty resilient.  I mean, it´s pretty notable out here in the mission, people who can´t handle challenges very well.  Thanks for being such great parents.  I´ll definitely need lots of help when I start my family.
I don´t get why someone would want to ditch seminary or mutual... I loved seminary more than all my other classes, and mutual was cool, as long as I had friends... which I never did in St. George, but whatever.  I´m still not exactly sure what "New Beginnings" is, but I´m glad they´re focusing on testimony building.  Maybe it´ll help less people want to skip seminary.
So, the Book of Mormon is the word of God, just in case you wanted to hear it from a missionary.  So grateful for it, really clears up a lot of doubts.  Pray about it and study it, and God will help you know it´s true by a feeling in your heart and a surety in your mind.  I like reading the scriptures.  Going back through Jesus the Christ a second time.  Yeah.
Other than that, I love you all, and have a great week!
Love,
Elder Taylor

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