Elder Tolen's Transfer History

Elder Tolen's Transfer History
Elder Tolen's Transfer History


Monday, April 4, 2016

Week 63 [72]: Hastening, Not Maintaining

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Hey! So the server was down this last Monday, so we all obtained permission to resend our weekly emails! So here it is!

Well, this week has been filled with many different experiences! It's been great. This week I've experienced weather that freezes you in your tracks, and I've also experienced weather that deserves short-sleeves! It was quite interesting.

This week we have been teaching like crazy. Elder Brown had an investigator that lives in a different area, but he hasn't met with missionaries in over a year and a half, at least until last week! We were able to meet him, get some Ramen, and teach him the restoration! It was a fantastic lesson, and he said he wants to meet again soon. He is basically fluent in English! So that is always a lot of fun. He is very prepared, and I'm excited to see how he progresses.

In some other news, we had a lesson with one of our recent converts, and it was great. He really opened up to us, and gave us some of his thoughts and struggles, and we were able to help him find some peace in this turmoil.

This week, something I've really been trying to focus on is hastening, not maintaining, the work of Salvation. That was something President Whiting was really stressing at the conference, that as the Lord's servants, we should never settle for just maintaining the work in an area, but rather really strive to hasten it. As we demonstrate our faith to the Lord, He will provide more opportunities for us to serve His children, but in order for Him to do that, He needs to know that He can trust us with the prepared children. Why would the Lord trust us with the big things, if we aren't even taking care of the small things? My testimony of this has grown exponentially over the course of my mission. I have personally seen the difference it makes in someone's life.

This last week, I was studying in the book of Jonah. I have really grown to love the Old Testament. It is such a rich source of knowledge. But anyways, at the end of the book of Jonah, he leaves the belly of the great fish, and begins to preach unto the people, and he tells them that if they don't repent, money will be destroyed. The people, after hearing this, have their hearts softened, and the entire city begins to fast and repent, and the Lord forgives them of their iniquities. This upsets Jonah, because he just told them they would all be destroyed, so now he thinks God has made him look like a liar. So Jonah goes outside of town, and sets up a little place where he can rest for a bit. During the day, there is a large gourd above his head, blocking the sun, and he really appreciates the gourd, but that night, as he slept, a worm destroyed the gourd, so when Jonah awoke and saw the gourd, he became angry. Then, in Jonah 4:9-11 the Lord gives him this counsel:

9  And God said to Jonah, Doest thou well to be angry for the gourd? And he said, I do well to be angry, even unto death.

10 Then said the Lord, Thou hast had pity on the gourd, for the which thou hast not laboured, neither madest it grow; which came up in a night, and perished in a night:

11 And should not I spare Nineveh, that great city, wherein are more than sixscore thousand persons that cannot discern between their right hand and their left hand; and also much cattle?

This story really helped me realize the importance of keeping things in perspective. Sometimes, I think I'm a lot like Jonah, because I have many times where I get frustrated, or I get down about something, but when we look at things from an eternal perspective, we begin to grasp why things happen. All things have meaning. There isn't anything in this life without it. Sometimes we just won't recognize it right away, and sometimes, we might not even recognize it in this life, but I can promise you that it does have meaning.

I love each and every on of you! Keep pressing forward, because the Lord is right there pushing with you! You're all amazing!

Elder Tolen

FHE in the Fuchu Single Adult Ward!

A Lesson at the Hasegawa Family's House!

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