This week has been an exceptional week. We received new missionaries on Tuesday, so my companion and I ran through an orientation with them and got them all set up. Thursday, we had to go and give correction to some missionaries on how to give correction. (Lead by example?) Saturday, a film crew came in to document Elder Bednar's visit to Liberia. They were filming for the World Report so they wanted to catch missionaries in the act. They interviewed a few missionaries. They interviewed my companion and I, they videoed us contacting, and then our investigator came to the chapel to be taught, so they thought it would be wonderful to video us teaching her. Bless her heart. She was hyperventilating the whole time. I asked her to give the opening prayer and with fear in her eyes, she whispered, "Prayer?" She did fine though. Maybe you will see her on the World Report next General Conference.
Sunday, Elder David A. Bednar, Elder Donald L. Hallstrom, and Elder LeGrand R. Curtis Jr. came to instruct the entire country of Liberia. It was one of the most influential and spirit filled meetings of my life. Elder Hallstrom instructed on the ability we have to change and not stand still. Elder Bednar instructed on the Grace of God and how they can use it to overcome their various challenges. He discussed the positive impact of Ebola which is providing the church here with independence and the desire to do missionary work without full time missionaries. Near the end of his instruction, he paused and said, "I want to have everyone sing 'How Firm a Foundation'" The congregation of 4,100 Liberians began singing this beautiful hymn. The spirit flooded the room as I broke down to tears. Not for the words. But the words filled my mind, "I don't want to go home. I don't want to leave these people." I began crying knowing that my time is coming to a close. Who would want to leave this? Who would want to leave these people? I thought I was the only one crying until I looked down the row and the other missionaries were crying. That comforted me.
Elder Bednar then conducted a Priesthood Leadership meeting. That guy is a very direct man. It was incredible to see him answer the questions the way he does. In smaller settings, he enjoys a Question and Answer format. He began by discussing how some African Traditions take away your priesthood power. He then stated, "You may think 'Oh, he's white and from America. He doesn't know.' No! It's not that I don't know. You don't know!" A problem in Africa is the Priestcraft and Unrighteous Dominion and he hit those hard at the meeting. During the meeting, I decided to ask him a question. He picked me and I couldn't stop shaking. I asked my question quick then sat down. To be instructed and edified by the foot of an Apostle of the Lord was one of the greatest experiences and feelings I've had. It was wonderful and I came away with a greater desire to live for Priesthood Power and to honor my covenants. I love you all and hope you all are well. I'm praying for you and hope that the Spirit of God may continue to lead and guide you. May you continuously live worthy of those Gentle Promptings.
pic1: The Cape Coast guys!