This week was hard. But if I were to put a tittle to this letter it would be "the blessing of a trial". We haven't been having a lot of success in our area and every day seems really hard. I've been praying a lot for more strength so that I can continue working without losing heart. Friday night I got really sick because an investigator gave us tacos and they did not sit well in my stomach. Normally I try to turn unhealthy things down, but this an investigator, so I ate the tacos. That night I sat in bed with a bucket and didn't sleep a whole lot. For a moment I let my mind wonder into the negative area and I started to get really down. I had been praying for strength so that I could bear my struggles, but at this moment I felt very, very weak and like I wouldn't be able to move forward.
I'm pretty sure that I've shared this scripture before, but it applies to this week perfectly.
And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.
There was a moment that night that I really feel like the Lord was teaching me. At 6:00 in the morning I was throwing up in my bucket. Now throwing up is bad enough, but throwing up chili... let's just say it burns a little more. As I sat there huddled over my bucket in my bed, this scripture came to my mind and I suddenly felt this strength come to me... and I smiled. I'll admit I was a little surprised that I was able to smile in the middle of regurgitating my meal, but I did. And.. well suddenly my mind was lifted from that place of negativity and I recognized that this was a blessing, I just had to look at it that way. Because really I do feel stronger because of this experience! And that's what I was praying for in the first place.
I remembered the talk by D. Todd Christofferson titled "As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten" There's a line in his talk that says ‘Thank you, Mr. Gardener, for loving me enough to cut me down.’” We can either choose to curse God for our troubles, or recognize it as the opportunity that he has given us to learn and grow. It may not be easy, but if we put our trust in God and our Savior Jesus Christ, we can go through it with a smile :)
Thank you for all of your love and support! It really is a great blessing as a missionary to have friends and family that love me and write often! I love you all so much!
Love Elder Twede