Date

October 27, 2016

Area

Preston England MTC

Companion

Elder Chisholm

"I've asked you before, I'm asking you now and I won't ask a third time."

Friends and family:

I'm going to be perfectly honest with you guys, I have never felt more terrified in my life than I have this week. I can pretty close to folding inside of myself and disappearing into nothingness. It was horrible, yet amazing at the same time because it really caused me to have a reevaluation of my purpose and testimony. All of us were on the edges of our seats the whole time, and for the first time in a while, no one was asleep. Of course, who sleeps through a devotional by Elder Holland? We watched a broadcast from the Provo MTC where he spoke and it was extremely riveting. He spoke on missionary work, and in essence how the missionaries have been slacking off in their work. He gave a story of two elders and the lesson to be learned, then proceeded to list off three things that missionaries don't do well, and everyone knows how when Elder Holland means business, then you listen. He described how in the mission field, any time should be a time for missionaries. It doesn't matter what the situation may be, (imagine him getting more forceful) it doesn't matter if you teach lessons or not. The purpose of missionaries is to bring others to Christ, and sometimes that means doing things other than sitting in a house teaching a lesson! Missionaries today need to be more cognizant of the needs of their investigators, and not on getting one more number on their baptismal sheet. The rest of the devotional was him giving the ways that missionaries needed to improve, and it was really impressive the way that he chastised, yet was still able to convey the love that he had for the missionaries. It got me thinking about Christ, and how he went around among the people, correcting their errors, while also showing an unmatched love for them as well.

On top of that, we had a second devotional from Elder Holland this week, and it was just as emotionally traumatic and heart wrenching. He spoke on the atonement, and the Savior's love for us. He made comments on how "Salvation's not cheap" and that the Atonement was not easy for the savior so why should your life be easy for you! "Why would it be easy for us when it was never easy for him?" The Savior's life was a trial from the night he was born. There was no time in His life when things came easy, yet we complain at the first trial that comes our way. I really felt like he was stabbing me through my soul. I began to remeber every time that I complained about something hard in my life. It really got me emotional as he talked about how the Savior is our third companion; how he speaks through the Holy ghost to us just as our physical companion would. I had never thought like that before and it made me realize just how vital it is that we turn to him in everything. They say you should be completely open and fluid with your companion, so why wouldn't we be with the Savior. He is like our ultimate cheet sheet, he knows what our investigators need and will gladly help us find out, but we have to be able to work with him and invite him into our trio.

We went as a zone up to the temple to have a testimony meeting after one of the other devotionals that we had this week. It was amazing the spirit that we all felt. Many of the elders really opened up and shared personal feelings that touched my heart. I want to express to you how much I love my district. They have each improved my life in some way that I couldn't have imagined. I know that I was sent to this place for a reason, and I'm starting to feel why. These people are amazing and I am so grateful to them for helping me out in everything I've needed. They have really made me feel welcome here, even though I'm American. I feel like I fit in and they have been so much fun to hang out with. We stay up late all the time and have amazing talks, most of the time about gospel topics. There are so many different points of view on the scriptures, and my eyes have been opened to different perspectives of the gospel. I'm so excited to share this with everyone I teach!

Speaking of my district, we had a district fast together last Sunday. It was absolutely hilarious becsuse it was a 24 hour fast, and we skipped three meals. We were about 3/4 of the way through and people started to die. By the end everyone was so ready to eat the dinner, which turned out to be roast beef, which was amazing!! However, they didn't realize that when you don't eat for a long time, your stomach decreases, and so they overstuffed themselves with food. They went from complaining about being hungry, to complaining about being too full in about 10 minutes. I was laughing so hard. I think we need to teach how to properly end a fast. ;)

We went to the temple again today and had a wonderful session. One of my German teachers went with us and we had a great talk afterwards. My teachers are amazing and have wonderful insight into the gospel. It is always an amazing experience to sit in the house of the Lord and feel the spirit unrestrained. The veil is thin in His house, and it is so easy to open up to him and feel of His love for us. It makes me more fully realize that it is impossible to deny Christi and our Father, because there is no way that any man could help me feel the things that I do. Only a Devine being with a perfect knowledge of me could even have a chance at understanding what I need and being able to give it. I know that He is watching me everyday personally and that He cares about what I need. I am so grateful to Him for His love in my everyday life.

Thank you guys so much for all that you have done for me. I love getting emails from you guys, and even though it may take me a week to write back, I always try to make time for everyone. I love hearing everything that is going on back home, and I'm glad that you guys enjoy hearing my emails. I pray for you guys all the time and hope that you guys are having the best time. I love to see pictures of what's going on, and I'll try to keep the pictures coming from this end too. :) I love you guys so much and think of all the stories I'll be able to share when I get back. Stay strong and all things are possible.

With lots of love:
Elder Mühlestein




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