Sunday, August 31, 2014

Week 50: "Ting Ting Hevi and Gratitude", Trials of Faith, A Loving Heavenly Father

Hellooo Family :)

You are so great and I love each of you more than I could ever explain. I'm just amazed that I had to travel to the other side of the world to find out what is really important in my life.  

This week was a week of pondering and realization for  a lot of things. First you may read the title of my email and be like 'ting ting hevi' what the heck? So first just say those words out loud and see what it sounds like. There is this island by Fiji and they use broken English as part of their laguage. The word for pondering there is 'ting ting hevi' or in regular English 'think think heavy.' One thing I have leaned to absolutely love in the Mission is time to ponder. Ponder the scriptures, the lives of people I teach, my relationships with others, my own life, and my relationship with my Father in Heaven. This week I was really brought to my knees and humbled, as I was 'ting ting hevi-ing' about how lucky I am.

 ***this next part is edited: I have mentioned this family who has embraced the Gospel and is experiencing trials of faith. Their father has died and their mother lives in another country for work. The oldest son is 18 and moved to another city for work. Money is scarce. They eat rice for breakfast; flavored with vinegar or soy sauce if they have extra money. They usually don't have lunch and eat dinner if neighbors have left overs. One day I was there, I watched the two youngest, ages 9 and 2, making a fire to cook their last bit of rice. They realized they were definitely lacking fire wood to cook their meal. One of the boys picked up a machete and started to chop a wood post that holds up their house. I almost cried at the sight.***

As I went to sleep that night I couldn't help to think, Why am I so lucky? Why do I ever complain about my 'trials'? How can I not take my many blessings for granted?

At this time I was really having a hard week, one of the harder weeks of the mission. Now I am looking at my difficulties much differently. Instead of asking 'why me?' I'm striving to accept my trials as blessings and lessons from a loving Heavenly Father who wants to teach me something for my own benefit. I strongly believe God will never give us a trial that will impede our eternal progression. Everything that happens is our benefit.

I know that the scripture Ether 12:6, 12 is true "Ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith." I love each of you so much and I couldn't have been blessed with a better family. Have a great week :)

Elder Watkins

Cool pic from a while back in the archives:
Elder Cancel, Elder Drake, Elder Soberano, Elder Watkins

Elder Drake and Elder Watkins
 "Harvesting  Scrumptious Adobo and BBQ Fried Chicken"

Dinner appointment at our Branch President's house

Bryce, Elder Watkins, Jhann Rai

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