Because we're going to Baku! Transfer calls yesterday and I was so sure I was heading out but instead I'm getting a new companion and heading to Baku full-time! Elder Caine and I will be moving out into the countryside and living in a little village called Siem Riep Ktuat near our little group in Baku. I am so stoked.
Had a lesson with an investigator last week who is a Christian but hasn't had the opportunity to be a practicing Christian in many years. Also, he's drunk pretty much every time we meet him. During our lesson on faith we shared a scripture from James chapter 2 verse 17 which reads, ''Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone.'' After reading the verse we asked what the verse meant to him. He paused for a moment and then said thoughtfully, ''I think it means that everyone who doesn't believe in Jesus Christ should die''. I couldn't help myself, I actually laughed. Fortunately (this kind of seems weird to say) he was really drunk so he wasn't super aware of what was going on. We pretty much just ignored his analysis and moved on with the lesson. I'm not sure how much he got out of it.
Also, weird food of the week is pig ears. I ate grilled pig ears. Not my favorite thing but definitely edible. Not sure if I would eat that one again. Why can't we just enjoy burgers and french fries around a nice kitchen table huh?
We're going to a zoo today. Though I have seen a good share of jungle animals in the wild, I have yet to see wild elephants and monkeys. Should be quite the day. Unfortunately, that means I will be cutting this email a little short but first I want to talk about President Uchtdorf.
President Uchtdorf learned English as a third language after his native tongue, German, and Russian, the language he needed to learn as a youth in communist East Germany. Despite English being his third language, he is quite the speaker. His sermons are always well worded, poetic and powerful. While reading through a General Conference issue of the Ensign, I was particularly impressed by one of his more well known sermons entitled 'Waiting on the Road to Damascus'. He shared the experience of Paul on the road to Damascus and of that of Joseph Smith and pointed out that though miraculous events like these do occur, if we wait for such miracles to happen to us before we begin to act in faith, we will likely be disappointed.
''The truth is, those who diligently seek to learn of Christ eventually will come to know Him. They will personally receive a divine portrait of the Master, although it most often comes in the form of a puzzle—one piece at a time. Each individual piece may not be easily recognizable by itself; it may not be clear how it relates to the whole. Each piece helps us to see the big picture a little more clearly. Eventually, after enough pieces have been put together, we recognize the grand beauty of it all. Then, looking back on our experience, we see that the Savior had indeed come to be with us—not all at once but quietly, gently, almost unnoticed.
This can be our experience if we move forward with faith and do not wait too long on the road to Damascus.'' (The Ensign, May 2011)
I testify that God wants us to learn of eternal truths and that usually He bestows those truths upon us ''line upon line'', ''precept upon precept'', ''here a little and there a little'' (Isaiah 28:13). I leave you with President Uchtdorf's commitment. ''Brothers and sisters, dear friends, let us not wait too long on our road to Damascus. Instead, let us courageously move forward in faith, hope, and charity, and we will be blessed with the light we are all seeking upon the path of true discipleship.'' (check it out at http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2011/04/waiting-on-the-road-to-damascus)
That's it for me, love y'all!