Monday, August 9, 2010

Didn't See This One Coming

Monday, August 9, 2010
So once again the mission has shown me how it can be relentlessly unpredictable. No matter how many transfers and no matters how much time anyone is on their mission, there is one word that can describe the mission-unpredictable. My companion, Elder Richines, got emergency transferred (just as I was a couple of months ago). He is, per say, the innocent missionary, meaning that someone else made a mistake and so he had to be moved and that caused him to also be moved since everyone needs a companion. Funny thing is that he is now in USC, which is his greenie area, and he will be there until the end of his mission haha. Anyways my new companion is Elder Bennett, he is from Arizona and is Native American. I don't know him that well yet, because we haven't had all that much time, but he seems down to earth and overall is just pretty quiet. We will see what happens but I do see us getting along really well, after all he is a convert himself, so that is something big we have in common. have you been? I can't believe that we are already in August, it's so weird how time is just flying by right now. What's even more scary is how little time I have left, well it's still some time but not that much.

Our area is doing alright. We haven't been doing a lot of finding, since we were given a bunch of less actives that we need to go visit. One of them is Olivia Amaya. We have been visiting her for awhile because there is a lot of problems in the family. A couple of months ago her mother passed away and unfortunately she was the glue of the family, like any other mother, and now most of the family has gone inactive. The Dad has gone pretty crazy and expects Olivia to do everything, take care of the kids, work full time to support the house, and clean, while he doesn't do anything. The worst part about it is that Olivia is only 17. I can't even imagine myself having kids yet haha. So all we do is come over every other day and chill. It might not be the most effective work but I know it's an act of service. We have been reading some general conference talks with her and she found a talk that she really liked. So we are making progress with her. Other than that we haven't had much time to do anything else, this last week and this upcoming week are going to be full of meetings since the Church is changing the way we teach. I'm so excited for it Elder Hinckley came to our mission and we got the opportunity to hear from him. He pretty much said that missionaries in general aren't good at teaching haha. Pretty harsh but it's probably needed. I'm excited for all the changes that are going to be happening, I'm not excited for all the meetings haha. Otto is trying to fall off the radar, so we haven't met with him at all. He knows that the Church is true and that this is the only thing that can help him find everything that he has been looking for but he won't do anything about it. The Morales family didn't come to church this last week. It was Stake Conference so most of the ward didn't even come, I think that 10 people came, which represents the ward pretty bad. Once again, I had to translate the entire thing. It was another great opportunity to serve and this time it wasn't even as hard as it was last time haha. Yeah my brain hurt but not as much as last time, so I went out to work after taking a lunch break. Guess I'm turning into a pro haha. PSYCH! The only hard part is that I have a legit cough going on for the past couple days and it's hard to breathe sometimes, President Baker heard me coughing at the end and said "I thought you were about to die over there" haha. It's all good.

Recently I have been studying the Old Testament and over the past couple prophets that have come and gone, I have noticed even more what it means to be a prophet. I'm so thankful to have a prophet here on the earth today because I know that he receives divine counsel directly from the Savior's mouth and that he gives us an example by word and by deed to what we may and could become. As Nephi said, all things from the beginning of the world were given to typify, or symbolize, Christ. Even Abraham was a type of the Father and Isaac a type of Jesus when Abraham was commanded to offer Isaac in sacrifice. This act was “a similitude of God and his Only Begotten Son” (Jacob 4:5).

Likewise, the life and mission of Joseph typifies the life and mission of Jesus.
Consider the following:
1. Joseph was the favored son of his father; so was Jesus (see Genesis 37:3 ; Matthew 3:17 ).
2. Joseph was rejected by his brothers, the Israelites, as was Jesus (see Genesis 37:4 ; John 1:11 ; Isaiah 53:3 ; 1 Nephi 19:13–14 ).
3. Joseph was sold by his brothers into the hands of the Gentiles, just as Jesus was (see Genesis 37:25–27 ; Matthew 20:19 ).
4. Judah, the head of the tribe of Judah, proposed the sale of Joseph. Certain leaders of the Jews in Jesus’ day turned Jesus over to the Romans. Judas (the Greek spelling of Judah ) was the one who actually sold Jesus. (See Genesis 37:26 ; Matthew 27:3 .)
5. Joseph was sold for twenty pieces of silver, the price of a slave his age. Christ was sold for thirty pieces of silver, the price of a slave His age. (See Genesis 37:28 ;Matthew 27:3 ; Exodus 21:32 ; Leviticus 27:5 .)
6. In their very attempt to destroy Joseph, his brothers actually set up the conditions that would bring about their eventual temporal salvation—that is, Joseph, by virtue of being sold, would become their deliverer. Jesus, by His being given into the hands of the Gentiles, was crucified and completed the atoning sacrifice, becoming the Deliverer for all mankind.
7. Joseph began his mission of preparing salvation for Israel at age thirty, just as Jesus began His ministry of preparing salvation for the world at age thirty (see Genesis 41:46 ; Luke 3:23 ).
8. When Joseph was finally raised to his exalted position in Egypt, all bowed the knee
to him. All will eventually bow the knee to Jesus. (See Genesis 41:43 ; D&C 88:104 .)
9. Joseph provided bread for Israel and saved them from death, all without cost. Jesus, the Bread of Life, did the same for all men. (See Genesis 42:35 ; John 6:48–57 ; 2 Nephi 9:50 .)
I copied this from the Old Testament manual, so this isn't my genius but I know that the prophets are vital to the plan that our Heavenly Father has for us. They are His messangers and I know that Thomas S. Monson is the current and living prophet today. I'm so grateful for his counsel and for everything that he has done for the church, but I'm even more grateful that he prepared himself to be worthy to be an instrument in the Lord's hands.

I love you all and I hope you are having a wonderful vacation during the last month of summer. Over here in California the weather is great. Usually it's hot but there June gloom still over here. Pretty weird. Anyways love you all. Take Care. Ciao.

Elder Leavell


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