Sooooo much to do

Hello my beloved family!!!
The infection next to my eye has mostly gone down, not a problem really. I kept an eye on it (literally, haha, okay bad joke) and the office was aware, a doctors visit was blessedly not necessary.

I see Elder Mcpherson once or twice a week for meetings and intercambios. He is doing well
The favorite thing from my reading is the book of John. I had never realized how doctrinally heavy it was. Which is just really cool. I unfortunately don´t have my notes with me at this point but I will try and remember them for the next time. It is just such a different perspective from the other Gospels. But with my studies I have a cool observation, it comes from my studies in The Book of Mormon. In 2 Nephi 2 verse 17 it says
And I, Lehi, according to the things which I have read, must needs suppose that an angel of God, according to that which is written, had fallen from heaven; wherefore, he became a devil, having sought that which was evil before God.” [emphasis added by Elder Tonkinson]

Lehi, in order to recieve revelation and to figure the things out, also had to study the scriptures. I think sometimes it is forgotten that prophets recieve revelation in the same way that we do and that they are also required to do that which is requisite, it isn´t free.

Now as for my challenge,
One of the things that I have always felt as a missionary is the grandness of the whole deal. I feel like I am a little child standing by the ocean, with a small bucket in hand looking out at the vastness of it all and thinking “How am I going to get all of that water in my bucket?”
There is so much to do, and so little time, and so many details, and so many weaknesses that for once I have understood the statement that is in Moses [1:10]:  “Now, for this cause I know that man is nothing, which thing I never had supposed.”

It isn’t that I didn’t know that I was a small thing in the world and even more small in the universe. It is just I had never really stretched my mind to grasp the details of the vastness. However I am here, with my little bucket (My skills, my knowledge, my time and my physical limits) and I am trying to fit this vast ocean (All the things that I have to do, all of the people that are in need of help, all of the things that I need to improve) into it.

However, fear not for the work goes well. I press onward, the work marches onward and God in his infinite knowlege is watching over it all. Therefore, where I lack with my bucket, he has given me the ability to make it larger, to increase in knowledge, to increase in power, to increase in skill, up until I am doing all that he desires and the vast ocean fits inside the bucket. I look forward with hope to that day when I have reached it.
Therefore, my challenge is that for the first time in my life, I feel very, very small. Which I guess is a good thing, to finally have been humbled. I just recognize a lot more of my weaknesses, and they are many.

Anyway, just some thing I have been thinking about recently. The work is weird sometimes. Some weeks we hardly teach people, and we finish the week with a baptism. And other weeks we teach tons and tons and tons and no one even comes to church. The latter would be the results of this week. We taught a lot, and it was some of the best teaching that we have done as a companionship and some of the best that I have done as a missionary. The spirit was stronger in the lessons, the scriptures were out more and they were better explained, and no one came to church, not one. 8 investigators had promised us that they were going to come and then they did not come through in the end. It was just painful to watch the minutes tick by and realize that no one was there.  So that is the overview of the week. However let me share some details.

My favorite thing that has happened recently has been finding real doubts of investigators. One of them who we have been teaching for a while, finally let it out that he was having trouble believing in God. However, that did not come out until he had asked me to share my testimony. It was just a way cool opportunity because he said this after
“I guess, I have never really looked for that answer.  And you know what the problem is Elder? When you don’t have the answer and you aren’t really going forward or backward, you lose track of time. I have been stuck for 10 years like this. I think it is about time I looked for the answer.”

That is all I have time to share though. I need to send a happy birthday message to Addie 🙂 and take care of some other things. Sorry it is all short, but most of my other favorite experiences from the week are a little longer to communicate and I don’t have any more time.
I love this work
and I love you all very much

Elder Tonkinson

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