N's email 8/10/2015

area: Jennings Branch (Welsh, Louisiana)
zone: Orange
companion: Elder Hobbs

So Wednesday makes 9 months... That's weird to think about... really weird. Time is going way too quick! The thought of 2 years almost terrified me the month before I left, but now 2 years doesn't quite seem long enough, not when 9 months feels like a day. Oh well, time is one of those things that I can't control.

This week has been full of "once in a mission" opportunities. We went to the Baton Rouge Temple on Saturday with a recent convert, Sister Miller. It was a total of 3 hours of driving both ways and her non-member husband drove and most of that time we got to talk about how the church is organized. They both love the Church, he's just too busy with his job to learn and begin practicing right now. But anyway, Sister Miller brought 14 family names that we helped her find, and there was a youth group there who did the ordinances for them while we watched. It was so spiritual! That was the first time I've ever been east of the Mississippi River, it's big by the way. Anyway, when we came out of the temple, Brother Miller had been waiting in the visitor's room and while sitting there he got to meet the Temple President (the man in charge of that specific temple) and as we walked around the outside, Brother Miller said, "He was a very kind and gentle, yet confident. You could just tell he was high up, as well as those other men who were with him (temple sealers - the men who officiate the weddings in the temple). He was just glowing!" On the way home they took us out to eat and bought us steaks, really good steaks! One of the best experiences of my mission!

On Sunday the Houston Temple President came to the Jennings Branch and taught us about the Plan of Salvation and quite a bit about Adam and Eve. Then he opened it up to questions and answers.

We also taught the young men yesterday and we shared a video titled "Act for Themselves" from the Book of Mormon video resources collection. Best video ever about agency! I love teaching the young men! I hope I get the calling of Assistant Priest Adviser (kind of like an assistant youth minister for the 16 to 18 year old boys) when I get home, and stay there for the rest of my life!

I love my “son,” even though he's from Utah. I'll forgive him eventually for being a Utant (pronounced the same as “mutant” but without the “m”). He really prepared himself before he came out as far as the spiritual stuff goes. He just graduated high school in May so he's only 18 years old.

New Favorite Quote: "Now we are here. Our memories are veiled. We are showing God and ourselves what we can do. Nothing is going to startle us more when we pass through the veil to the other side, than to realize how well we know our Father and how familiar His face is to us." - President Ezra Taft Benson, 13th prophet of God in this last dispensation (a period of time when the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is on the Earth, including the entirety of both the Priesthood Authority and the knowledge of the Plan of Salvation).

I love all of you! But I love the Lord more And this is where He wants me. So this is where I want to be.

Oh, and some of the weird foods I've had are: gumbo, jambalaya, frog legs, raw sugar cane from the side of the road, wild duck, boudin (Cajun sausage), ox tail, and I've been offered squirrel.