Sunday, March 29, 2015

Week 79- Go and Come with Honor!!

Hey family!  We are able to email today "by His grace" as we say in Ghana.  I sure love this place and will have a hard time leaving it. It sounded like you all had a great week.  Cami is so dang funny, reading dad's email and mom's email this week made me laugh and really miss her.  It was good to get a good laugh though.  I can’t believe the weather is changing already, it seems too early.  I am grateful that you all had great weeks, that you are all happy and safe and doing well.

This week was a great week for Elder Nyampong and me.  We really had a great week and really felt the hand of the Lord as we went throughout the day.  The Asuom branch is really struggling, to be honest it is on the verge of collapsing, we are trying our best and coming up with ideas from the Lord on how to change it but the members aren't willing to put in their parts to change it and it is really affecting us all. Pray for this branch oooooo.  We have been working with a couple people who are really progressing.  We have a man whose name is S.  He is such a great man that I will never forget.  He is so determined to change his life and has so much faith in Jesus Christ. He knows that this gospel is his only way to have true happiness.  It’s funny though because he speaks Ghanaian pigeon English so when I try to speak to him we have a good laugh because I can only hear the pigeon but to speak it dea is not easy haha.  Also we have an older women whose name is E. She has been coming to church and is such a sweet lady.  She doesn’t speak a lick of English so my companion does all the teaching and I just laugh and draw pictures as he teaches on a small white board we have.  We invited her to pray to know if the church was true and the following lesson she told us that she as she was praying saw Joseph Smith when he saw the light and knew it was an answer to her prayer.  Well we went there Sunday and she told us that her friend had told her that the church was not true.  My companion did a great job by saying who are you going to listen to God or your friend?  She responded with of course God and then she came to church so it was sweet.  We have a few other people that we are working with that are being very stubborn and aren't being honest with us. I tell you what though this Church is so dang true.  You know I was just discussing with my companion the culture in Ghana and the mindset with members with the topic of going on mission.  Here in Ghana and I think it is safe to say in West Africa, the culture in the Church is if you are a man worthy of age to serve a mission basically you have to go.  Their mentality is if you don’t serve you bring dishonor upon your families head and upon your own head.  You know I don’t know if this right because it may force people to go when they don’t want to but I also agree with it because not only does that aspect of their mentality make sense I think we miss out on so many blessings into our lives and miss out on such a wonderful learning experience that you can only learn on a mission.  A mission is so important, it truly is a university of life, it teaches you so much about the gospel of Jesus Christ and truly helps you develop a sure foundation that will carry you the rest of your life.  I was once participating in a family home evening in Kaneshie with members and with a group of young single adults.  We were celebrating the departure of a leaving sister missionary.  It was so cool to be in this single room with so many wonderful people strong in the faith.  Well as we were closing they asked each of us in attendance to give the future sister missionary some words of advice. Well it went through about 9 of us then it was the turn of a young 9 year old girl.  She said 5 simple words that changed my life.  She said "go and come with honor." I thought of such a powerful statement by such a young girl that is the mentality that each of us should have. I think this is what God and Jesus said to us as we left their presence to gain a body and be tested I imagine God saying "Taylor Go and Come with honor my son."  I will forever live my life so when I stand before that Judgement seat of God he will say "well done thou good and faithful servant." My family the church is true, prepare yourself in whatever way imaginable to magnify our callings, go on a mission or do what you know the Lord expects of you at this time. I love you all very much and miss you like crazy!! I will see you in 4 months!!!:)

Elder Carson

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Week 76- Bang!!!!

Hey family!!!! it sounded like you guys all had a pretty good week.  I tell you what I love having a companion that can speak Twi it truly has hastened the work out here.  Training has been sweet it has truly gave me a big push and he is so motivated to work so it has just helped me get out of the being trunky rut.  Elder Nyampong is a sweet guy we get along very well; he reminds me a lot of Boehmer so we get along great.  Elder Esplin is sweet too he has so many card games that are so sweet to is called BANG it is the best game I have ever played and would recommend it to any missionary coming to Ghana.  The missionary work has been sick out in Asuom we are running into a lot of distractions; Satan is definitely at work out here. We have had so many distractions with family members, members causing issues, and so many other things, I feel like I’m serving in Oakley. There is a literacy program that President set up out here and that has been sweet we have a sweet investigator from it named N.  He is a great guy that can’t wait to be baptized he extended himself a date so we are very happy with him.  These past couple of days I have been really thinking about life and other things, and have realized however how truly blessed I am.  Sometimes to be honest I make myself stressed because I am so grateful that I am like scared to come home I don’t know it’s a weird feeling but words cant describe how grateful I am to my Heavenly Father for the way I have been raised.  I was studying however and I have always wanted a way to give back my gratitude to God which is why I strive to work hard always, but I was studying in Jacob and Jacob pleads with us that we need to give freely or something along those lines in Chapter 2 I think.  Well a seventy said a way to show our gratitude to God is by paying our tithing and offering.  It really touched me as not only are they commandments but they also are a way of showing thanks to God.  We have so much to be grateful....I wish you could just see what we see wouldn’t care to give offering or your tithe.  We have truly been blessed and we have so much to be grateful for.  I hope we can all strive from this day forth to pay our tithe and offering.  We have seen miracles from our Heavenly Father and have been blessed with a wonderful community, country, and family.  We may not be perfect, but Jesus Christ will help us become it.  It’s not much but it something that touched me this week as a way to show my thanks to God.  The church is so dang true, I know it with my whole heart, if you don’t know it, or you are lacking some things, just read the Book of Mormon, with a humble heart and that will change.  Literally the Savior is the son of God and our redeemer, it pains him when we don’t do what he has taught us, he did die for us and he loves us, his arm is always outstretched and never shortened...come unto Him!!!
I love you all very much!! Tell Grandma and Grandpa that I love their emails and letters; they give me more life and motivation for the coming weeks.  Dad and Mom thank you for writing me; I am blessed to have a family that emails me every week.  Count your blessings and the send thanks up to your father.  Love you all!! Love You Colb man!!!

Elder Carson