"Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life." 2 Nephi 31:20

Friday, August 17, 2012

Letter #7

Dear Family and Friends,
First off, I just want to say that I am thankful for anything you may have done to help me get to this point in life as well as any support you've shown while I am on my mission. Yesterday, Elder Cox got to visit his brother who had come home from his mission just after Elder Cox came to the MTC. So, consequently, I got to visit with Elder Cox's brother as well. But, I wasn't really engaged in a whole lot so I took more notice of what was going on in the lobby of the MTC. Long story short, while we were sitting there a couple came in. Good looking pair of some missionary's parents--you could tell. They checked in, the mother grabbed a few tissues and they sat down. Nothing too special. But, after long, one of the District Presidents (the big ones that is, the MTC is divided into two large districts) came out to visit them. As soon as the mom saw the District President she just started sobbing. It was truly sad. Anyway, they went back to his office and after a few minutes the father came out with his keys in hand to get the car. Long story short, they were clearly there to pick up their son. Now, it doesn't really matter (to me) whether this missionary's exit was forced or voluntary, because at the end of the day, a missionary went home. You always hear about it happening and stuff like that, but it never truly hit me until it was right in front of my face. The scene was truly heart-wrenching. Anyway, I will be trying my best not to do that to any of you--or myself.
On a lighter note, our district is doing well at soccer during gym time. A little too well actually. Now that we are a bit more experienced and have some time under our belts we tend to play sports a little more relaxed than more. (But still win, so no worries). Point is a lot of kids sometimes just go too hard. This is a story of one of those kids. Pretty much he chased after a ball at full speed that went out of bounds (there are no lines on the field) and passed a kid on our team to go get it. He brought it back in with the same type of wreckless running and was heading for the goal. It is important to note that I play defense in lacrosse and therefore play defense in soccer. Not sure if it's because the techniques transfer sport to sport or if I am just awful at offense, point is, the kid was running straight at me. I guess I thought everyone else had lost there competetive edge when we did, but I was mistaken. I stood in a good defensive stance as a means that he couldn't cross the ball and score, but he treid anyway. He kicked the ball while he was about 5 yards away from me and I deflected it and it went out of bounds again, no big deal. You'd think. But, he was still running full speed and could not stop himself. Long story short, he ran full speed into me while I was completely stationary. What happened? I was still in my same spot, except he was now laying flat on the groune below me. Apparently it looked like I destroyed him, but I was just stationary for those split seconds watching the ball go out of bounds. People made a big uproar because "that's how BYU lacrosse does it", but, it was sad to see this new Elder just laying on the ground. So, its kind of a sad story, but he is completely ok now. I thought I had really hurt him. He said that he thought he was going to die, but accepted the fact because the last thing he saw was the Y on my shirt. So he said he could die happy while seeing something beautiful. All the while I thought he was complimenting my face... Oh well.
Also, as the "example district" now, we realize that everyone here notices what we do. Maybe not the whole MTC, but everyone in our time slot for sure. Whenever we start something, the other Elders catch on quick, good or bad. So, we've started to be more careful about what we do. We are really like the Sons of Mosiah, and have to choose whether we are going to act like them before or after repentance. Self explanatory what is more desired.
Also, in Mission Conference last fast Sunday, President McIff (of the MTC Presidency) used Calvin and Hobbes in his talk in relation to the Book of Mormon. So, Dear Mom and Allyson, I hope you feel bad for making fun of my Calvin and Hobbes talk for all these years. Calvin weeping has so many correlations to Jesus weeping. Geez. Love you. <3
Lastly, I have been thinking a lot about how my actions now effect my future, and consequently, what I should be doing. Careers obviously come up in that subject and I decided that I really wanted to rescue people. I had no idea what that entailed, but today I thought of being a helicopter pilot for a medivac kind of thing. So, since this morning, I find myself thinking a lot about helicopters. Please send me a cool picture of a helicopter that is rescuing someone. Anyway, for now, aren't I rescuing people as a missionary? Isn't that really what this is about? So, I'm quite enjoying the idea of that and the opportunity that I get to help "rescue" people for the next two year. So, that's my charge to you. This week, go find someone you can helprescue. It may seem hard, but you aren't alone in it. I can promise you that.
Elder Caleb Andrews
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