Dear Friends and Family,
What makes it worth it? What makes us do what we do? It's not just the blessings we receive from God, those are an after effects of our Faith. Nephi uses the words faithfulness and diligence at least 5 or more times in the first few chapters of the first book. I have noticed this as I have started the Book of Mormon again. I guess that means that those two attributes matter a whole lot. That's what this week is about, I guess. These two things I've seen.
I've been trying to be more faithful and follow more impressions and just all around be a stronger missionary this week, but sometimes I doubt, just like everyone does. I just don't see a lot of what you would probably consider "results", in my mission, so far anyhow. All the good things seem to happen after I leave, sometimes that makes me feel as if maybe I had got something rolling with the Lord, sometimes I feel like I was holding something back, sometimes I feel like I was weak, or maybe I really just laid groundwork and planted the dear seeds of God's sweet southern vineyard.
So it was us and the Albany sisters at the Gardiners and Thompsons house the other day, celebrating Patrick's first birthday. It was too good to see all my friends from Albany ward and see how big the little guy has gotten, and it was pirate theme, and here are the sistas haha
(The Gardiners and Thompsons are from Josh's very first area almost a year ago!)
mah homie sista A
I think its that last one, it took a lot of praying and a lot of confidence in myself and God to come to that conclusion, but better to plant than to uproot. I also seem to go to some particularly interesting areas, out far away, country, usually branches (in case of my last 2 areas), that can crack the toughest of God's servants. I can't say I haven't had all kinds of pain and sufferings too, but my faith has really, truly grown. It's been a year, and I didn't think I would have to do such hard things a year ago, and still enjoy it and find positive goodness in everything. I tend to be so negative sometimes, but I just can't afford to do that, I owe it to my companion and this area to show the greatest of enthusiasm.
our frog buddy :)
This week we have had a lot of miracles, more than I really could list. One is that both the investigators the sisters left for us are progressing and getting close to baptism, we had a full family lesson yesterday out in Greensburg and it was pretty special to see everyone get so quiet while Elder Staley, the Spirit, and I taught the Plan. The Spirit was whispering all that he could all throughout the week, he is such a nice friend to have, if you haven't made a conscious relationship to move from acquaintance to friend with the Holy Ghost, it feels wonderful, I promise!!
It's been so hard, I won't lie, but that good old primary hymn really rings true, that when Nephi was tried, he merely replied "I will go and I will do!"
I sure love and appreciate y'all that email me, and even if you don't send letters or emails, It don't even matter. May God be with you.
-Elder Joshua Dean Rush