Thursday, June 2, 2011

boiling point

This letter (edited down a bit) came from my nephew who is a missionary in the Philippines. It was exactly what I needed to hear. I'm not kidding... read this!

The watched pot.

I don't remember where, but I know that I have heard the saying, "The watched pot never boils."  So I was patiently waiting for my water to boil last week, as I had just received some mac + cheese in the mail (thank you:).I stood next to my lukewarm pot of water, determined to prove the old adage wrong. I'm going to ruin the ending. THE POT BOILED. Yes it took some time, and yes I didn't notice any visible changes in the water until the end, but sure enough, the water hit 212 and little bubbles formed on the sides of the pot. I grabbed the noodles, anticipating the roaring boil I like to have when cooking. After another minute the roar was heard throughout the savannah and I threw in my soon-to-be American dinner. Just so you all know, I firmly believe that a watched pot will boil, and the sooner you learn this for yourself the better. See if you can't find out where I'm going with this one. I promise there's an application for you, too.

The past few weeks have been extra difficult (don't worry mother they're good now, otherwise I wouldn't be saying this). This week, I noticed a few bubbles of activity in the hearts of our investigators. I don't know what it was but I can see the roaring boil starting to take it's shape. Friends, this is why I'm here. Up from 0 two weeks in a row, 6 made it to church this week and expressed a desire to come back, get baptized, and take the sacrament. Yuman was just the focus, it has been a great week for everyone else, too.

So what's the application for you? What are you trying to do, but just can't see any visible improvement in? I know that before I came out here I could never feel the roaring testimony I so dearly yearned for. My desire was immense, flaming that gigantic pot of spiritual water I endeavoured to heat up. But the result just wasn't quite there. Starting the Book of Mormon happened many times, going to church was a given, but I was--figuratively--turning off the flame before the little bubbles of hope came in. It wasn't until this summer that I really decided it was time to give it my all and read through the whole Book of Mormon. It took faith that the pot would boil for me to spend precious propane (time, energy, effort) trying to heat that pot. Once I could see the bubbles of a roaring testimony come in, I began to have real hope. This concept applies everywhere. Use it for your own testimony, for the barefoot running feet you've always wanted, for that musical instrument you've dreamed about mastering. And know, for what it's worth to you, that I have a roaring, boiling, spilling over the edge testimony that Christ lives. I testify it. I share it every day. I want nothing more than my brethren to have the same thing, because it has litterally brought me more joy than imaginable in a world so far away from home.

Love from the Philippines,

Elder Brown

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