Wednesday, 10 September 2014

A Week In Walsall!

Dear Everyone,

It's been a major week for learning/growing/changing here in Walsall for me. A few quick cool things that I'd like to share.

When we were in Preston at the MTC, all the missionaries got to go to the temple. While there, I sat next to a very old man who could not really hear, speak, or see. One eye was covered by blackened glasses, and he had an earpiece that looked like it was implanted into his head. He moaned and mumbled a bit while I was there and I was sincerely amazed that he was in the temple performing saving ordinances for others when was in such a physical state himself.

On Sunday, he was sitting in front of me in the combined Priesthood/Relief Society fifth Sunday meeting. It took me a minute to figure out where I knew him from but then I distinctly remembered him as the man from the Preston temple that I'd sat next to him. I learned his name and got to give him a glass of water when he motioned that his cup was empty. The Lord taught (or retaught) me a few valuable lessons.

1. Heavenly Father knows and loves each one of his precious sons and daughters.
2. The Lord is mindful of each of us and wants us to have uplifting spiritual experiences that will teach us and help us come closer to him.
3. Sometimes the purest forms of service are sacrificing everything we have to do the work of the Lord.

Anyway, it was really wonderful.

In the meantime, due to a number of complicated events, spiritual roller coasters and etc., I think I now understand and have come to love Elder Ruka a lot better now. He is such a wonderful person. He's really given a lot to come and serve the Lord and give all that he has-he's really relying on the Lord in many many ways and the cool thing is that it works. His spirit is strong and can connect with many people who would be stand offish toward me. So, things will be better and easier now I think-mostly due to a change in perspective on my part.

Some Pictures:

Elder Ruka
My desk is a mesk!

Our area map
I made pancakes yesterday and there was leftover batter
for toda--woot woot!
Also, we had District P day today and I meant to take loads of pictures. It was pretty fun. We had a game of tossing grapes into companions' mouths over a net, blowing malteasers across the floor with straws (once against your companion and then once as a big race) and then volleyball and then pizza. It was great fun. Also, though the Assistants are in our district, they have P day on Saturday and so can't come but the Zone Leaders came so it was all great with four sets of missionaries (three isn't quite enough for volleyball. News is that they will reopen the second Elders' area in the other ward (where the Sisters and Assistants are) so if I stay, I'll be in a district of five teams! It will be great. Our district is amazing here. The Sisters assigned us some code names: we've got a seahorse, a panda bear, a polar bear, a brown bear, a sun bear, a black bear, and two penguins. It's pretty hilarious.

Anyhow, sorry there's not much of substance here. This Saturday is ZOne Conference and there's an area authority coming for our session of the conference (Lichfield/Birmingham Zones) but not for the other ones (muahaha!). Or so the penguins told me...

You all are great and I hope all is well. I'm looking forward to letters soon. I got some this past week and they were great!

Elder Houghton

228 Sandwell St.
West Midlands

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