Monday, August 22, 2016

August 22, 2016

Dear Momma/Family/Dad/Friends, 

That trip sounds like so much fun!  First Mexico and now  the whole West Coast without me?  I'm teasing, that actually sounds like so much fun, (except for the rabbits and a snake... not so much).

This week has had a lot of service opportunities earlier on in the week, which were all readlly fun, I got to climb trees and cut down the really high branches with a hatchet, (none of Grandpa's really nice gardening tools here, if you want to get the high branches you've got to climb for them, plus there wasn't even a good saw!).  We also met with a couple of members, we've yet to get any real relationships with some of the Less Active members of our ward, but we're hoping that that will change this coming week.  We also had a return sister missionary with her whole family come back to visit which was super fun, I had met her once the day she left, and our whole congregation was excited to see her because she served her for a very long time.  Her mom was going to send you a picture mom, but I accidentally mixed up your number and David's (I said 7992 instead of 7702 or 7998).  Anyway, some random lady in NYC got a picture of me and responded with a very confused response to her, that's when I realized that I mixed up the numbers...oops.  

Being a volunteer there are so many things changing, and sometimes it's hard to make sure we are using our time the way we should be.  We've had to spend lots of time on the computer changing things that we need to be doing differently now, and so on and so on.  There have been times where it hasn't been exactly what I'd call "exciting" but I keep trying to think back to what President Childs said a few Zone Conferences ago, where he talked about making every day sacred.  He said something to the effect that you should be able to kneel at the end of every day, and tell your Father in Heaven through prayer, that you tried to do what you were supposed to that day.  Well, having to spend time studying or on the computer, or doing service, is all good and stuff, but I was having a hard time figuring out how to make that a sacred experience for me.  I finally came to the realization that a day is sacred if it's spent doing what the Lord expects of me.  Right now in Russia, it's doing service, getting things to be more effective for the next volunteers to come in, and really just coming to get a real relationship with all the people that I get to come across, in the church and through service.

There are days that are harder than others, but that's how it should be and that's how it'll always be.  But being able to kneel at the end of the day, thinking over the day, and over what I need to do better the next day, and what I did well, is such a valuable time for me.  I love being able to take the comfort that I receive through prayer, and come to realize just what I can do better.  I love you all so very much and I have a couple of really fun pictures to send!  Have a great week!


Elder Belnap
Actually, I lied about the other pictures, there on someone else's camera.  Here's real maple syrup that we got gifted to us!!!!  I'll send the fun pictures next week!

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