Monday, December 9, 2013

Week 23 - The Coldest Place on Earth

Hello All!

    I hope you've all having a fantastic Christmas season!  I guess it's even been a white one back home.  Enjoy that, and stay safe out there!  We're having quite the weather here in Lethbridge as well.  This week, I guess there were two days when we were the coldest place on Earth...on Earth!  Don't worry, the church is conscious of our health and safety, and we were shut ins for a few days, which kinda stunk.  Anyway, it was kinda cold. ;)  
    Of course, when the missionaries are stuck inside, missionary work kinda suffers.  We really didn't have the opportunity to do much teaching this week, and we had quite a few dropped appointments, but that's ok! (kinda)  We can only do so much as missionaries, and then it's up to others to use their agency to make the right choices.  All we can do is our best. (And I hope we've been doing that.)
    We did have the chance to go to our ward Christmas party this Wednesday, though, which was great!  There were tons of members of the ward there, as well as non-members, and it was a really great opportunity to meet people we had only heard about to that point.  Elder Law and I also had the opportunity to perform a musical number, which was apparently okay.  It's been great to be with another companion who is so musical!  (Elder Law is a great "greenie" overall, by the way.  He makes it easy to be a trainer.)
    Ben and Beth are doing well, though.  Circumstances have made their coming to church the last couple of weeks kind of difficult, and we weren't able to meet with them at all this past week, but we have a lesson scheduled with them tonight, and Ben's niece, who is apparently very interested in taking the missionary lessons, and who is living with them now, should be there as well!  Ben and Beth have been trying to quit smoking, which has been tough for them, but I really don't anticipate anything happening that's going to stop them from being baptized on New Year's Day.
    We're still hoping and trying to increase our teaching pool, and there's a lot of really good potential for that in the ward.  The members of 12th Ward are awesome, and really willing to work with us and help us out, and we're trying, with our super awesome Ward Mission Leader, to get things moving even more; It's gonna be awesome!
      I've been starting to read the New Testament these past couple weeks- I highly recommend it, by the way- and I came across the story of Jesus walking on water.  Of course, the storms were blowing and the apostles were scared, and then even more scared when they saw the Savior walking toward them on the water, but he told them, "Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid."  For Peter, that was enough for a bit, and he conquered his fear enough to allow his faith to help him walk on the water himself.  Sadly, that didn't last, and Peter allowed the storm to get the best of him.  Just before he disappeared under the raging water, however, he cried, "Lord, save me." 
    "And immediately, Jesus stretched forth his hand, and caught him." (Matt 14:27-31)  How often are we like Peter?  How often do we let ourselves be afraid about all sorts of things that really don't matter in the long run?  Our weaknesses.  Our worries.  Other's opinions of us.  Anything.  For me, that's pretty often.  But the Savior is there.  When we cry to Him for strength and support, He will "immediately" stretch forth His hand.  He's always there.  Isn't that enough to "Be of good cheer" about?
    I hope you all have a fantastic week and that you don't forget what this wonderful Christmas season is really all about!  Be good!  Be safe!  Merry Christmas!

Elder Hafen

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