Sterling and his companion, Elder Higham, from Idaho Falls Idaho
Elder Higham and his birthday cake
Hey family!!! :) so good to hear from you all this week :) I love the emails and the pictrues :) sorry about last week... we had a really busy day and I didn't have loads of time to email... but i plan to make up for it now!so this week.... normally I would try to start out with some smaller stories but this one has been on my mind hard core.... I had a mission changing experience! so I'm going to be fully honest here... Lincoln is amazing and I love it :) There are so many people who are prepared to hear the gospel and we have been so blessed :) we have been teaching loads of university students and it has been so much fun! the gospel can help everyone and I love being able to tell people about Gods plan for us :).. So this story happened last week..like I mentioned, we have been teaching loads of new investogators.. with new investogators you teach the restoration, but in a way that it applies to them :) and I found that I was really struggling just teaching the basic lessons about the restoration... like I had no direction.. my comp would look at me to say something and my mind would be completely blank.... it was the weirdest because I usually can think of something to say.. but for a lot of these lessons.. I just couldn't.. and it was killin me. I was praying so hard and studied things that I though would help..... including the lessons I have heard for my whole life and I thought I knew so well... so I was still struggling with this when we went to a dinner appt at the Henleys.. dinner was amazing and I love that family :) so time rolled around for the spiritual thought. which we dicided i would give.. I shared the story about 2 nephi 4:34 and what it meant to me and what I had learned from it... it started a conversation about how the gospel can bless us and we ended up talkiing about first impressions and stuff and what we all thought of each other.. one of the family members shared some wonderful stories and gave me and my comp some wonderful compliments :) she noticed though that I was holding something back, so she asked me what was going on. I told her that I was struggling with teaching and this is what i said.. "I have grown up in the church, I have studeid the lessons my whole life. I played nephites and lamanites when I was a kid but for some reason I can't teach it properly." They all thought for a second and then brother Henely just said.. "there is a whole lot of 'I' in what you said and not a lot of the spirit.. so when your studing and teaching are you leaving room for the spirit?"....... haha I almsot wanted to laugh because of how simple that sounded! this last little while I was depending completely on myself to teach and not the spirit. I had gotten to a point where I was feelin big because I had been out for five months and I forgot the only thing that can help us teach and touch the hearts of our investigators... the spirit! haha, so even though I have heard, "teach with the spirit" my whole life I was forgetting the only thing we need. This was such a cool experience! so now every time I go to teach or finding or something I always ask myself... are you going to leave room for the spirit? ha and our lessons have gone so much smoother..... I know that without the spirit, the reason we're missionaries sorta goes away. The spirit is what testifies of the truth of our message :)
We taught a lesson after that and we really focused on having the spirit, it was so special. The crazy part is, I could teach with that every time! i just have to figure out how...... i dont know what i have to change to do it but i wanna find it! ha, i have a few ideas....... but remeber how we were talking about wrestling and how much it sucks? well thats the only thing I can compare to what I'm doing right now...... everyone has always told me I can do so many great things and that I have the ability to be a leader... and even though I still find that hard to believe.. I trust that if God wants me to be something he will help me get to the point he needs me to be. How I compare that to wrestling is that I wasted so much time not doing my best..... the first few years I was ok at being ok...I told myself I was doing my best but I never really was. I was doing my ok best... it took me like five years to finally step up and try and do what I could have done all along. I just didn't believe I could... so comparing that to my mission is right now I'm still young... the mission may be hard and england may be a rough place but it doesn't make it ok for me to be ok with being ok.. just because i'll be accepted by everyone with not going all out... doesn't mean thats how I should be.. gosh I have tears in my eyes right now I beleive so much that if we just have faith that we can do anything I just hate how I let myself slump down where satan wants me so I can't do the work how God wants me to.......
ah man well I hope you guys can understand this all i feel like I just rambled ha but I love being a missionary.. I love preaching the gospel..... I love Jesus ha :)life is to short to waste time not doing your best! im sure I heard that from dad or someone sometime in my life ha but its so true!so the goals i have set is to find out how to be the best I can be and how to stay there.. I think a good example is shayna ha and you guys.. mom and dad :) I love you guys so much! thank you so much for the things you have taught me :) i would be such a slob if I didnt have you as examples.. i have been so blessed ha thank you thank you thank you :)I really love you all :)
So my invitation to all is to remember the spirit! whether if it's teaching a lesson to a class to a friend or an investigator remember to leave room for the spirit :)love you alllove elder wiser :)