July 9, 2017
I am very thankful for this opportunity to write you guys. I miss you tons and as I draw nearer and nearer to my finishing date, I spend more time thinking about you. I’m scared a little to finish, but at the same time I’m exhausted. I feel like I have been working my butt off for 2 years (haha, what a coincidence), but yeah. I am starting to truly understand what people mean when they ask if I am trunky. There is a huge temptation to just not make myself move and care for others. As I am drawing closer to the end of my mission I am becoming anxious for the future. As I get more anxious, it’s easier to waste time and think about what’s going on, and harder to come back to earth and focus on what I am doing. I would like to report that I am doing fine with this temptation as of now, but it is now present in my life. I will continue to fight the disease and hope I will overcome.
Other news… my area is doing okay. I keep learning; sometimes the work isn’t progressing but it’s going okay. We are on the Lord’s errand, but maybe he doesn’t want too many people baptized right now. I feel like I am definitely following the spirit as it leads me in my work. At first on my mission, I thought it was being silly, but now I realize that going in with a general idea of what you want to do (not a specific plan mind you, just a theme) and then improvising with the first thing that comes to your mind is essentially following the spirit. Because when we are Christ-like we do Christ-like things, and the spirit can work with us, and we can know everything we do will be for the good on others. For example, there was an active girl in the church, about 18 years old (don’t judge me) and she stopped coming to church for a while. Me, being a nice guy, I walked up to her house one day and called her out. It was already dark, maybe 7 or 8 at night, and she stood in the door way and the first thing that came out of my mouth was I came here to tell you that God loves you and wants you to be making good decisions. Nothing really impressed me to say it, but I know it was what we are supposed to do. I didn’t really feel the spirit, but my companion and she said it was really powerful and she came to church that Sunday.
There is this one couple we are also working towards, the husband cheated on the girl while she was pregnant and they have been having lots of problems. The girl is 21 I think, and the dude is 24 maybe. But we taught them about the plan of salvation and the husband asked if he can still go to the Celestial Kingdom if he didn’t go on a mission. It was kind of a silly question, but I could tell he didn’t know and had real intent and I told him he could, but he needs to get sealed to his wife and daughter, and he was really paying attention. They went and talked to the bishop yesterday and he’s going to help them work towards their goal and that’s really good. I really love those two.
Another less active person is this woman named B. She was a strong member with her husband for about 4 years. They have already been sealed and then her husband went to New Zealand and had a problem with another woman I believe, and now they are kind of in trauma. They still live together, but the husband is ashamed of what happened and so he went back to the Wesleyan church. The woman feeling stressed, decided to follow her husband and since that day they have never gone back to church, but she really wants to come back. The other day I was walking down the road and had a sudden thought to go to her house. We went there and the lady started crying and told us all that was happening and how she had started smoking again and how she wanted to come back so bad. She said I was the first Mormon to step foot in her house since December. I went there on Saturday, and went back the next day and I am going to have family home evening with them tonight. She asked me when the distribution center is open so she can buy garments and start wearing them again and she is going to try to come back. Plus, the husband said if she goes back maybe he will try also. So, I’m going with the relief society president to visit them and have family home evening and work with them. So, Elder Stark to the rescue. This has begun to happen more and more frequently. There are two other women, but I’m tired of typing. We also give a lot of blessings to other. It’s like being on the Lord errand, haha. I love it…. But yeah. That was kind of the highlights of my week.
Dad, I read about what mom said and I have this comfort: our service will never be perfect, but you raised me and I have used what you have taught me to save myself and others. So, you have done large amounts of work through me and your other sons. Maybe like your mission work, you won’t have huge visible success as a bishop, but the outcomes of your efforts will be numbered like the sands of the sea. I have helped others here which came from you. Think of Mormon, he spent his whole life trying to save his people. He witnessed the complete destruction of his people and he only saved his son, who saved almost the whole world with the Book of Mormon. I love you!