Tuesday, April 17, 2012

I hit the 9 month mark this week!!!!

Dearly beloved,

We gathered here today to partake of the wonderosity (now a word) of a
letter from Elder Eckman. I hope you all enjoy my first e-mail
written as a 20 year-old. My birthday passed well and I do feel a
difference, actually. I never really had before now... It's probably
just because I'm on a mission. Go figure.

Well, this last week was pretty cool. Office work was slow this week,
but we were able to teach a titch more; that's a huge blessing for me.
I miss teaching. We don't get to do it like I was always able to in
Luanda 2. We're so spoiled in this mission--all we do is teach! What
a cool blessing.

I was able to watch conference! In Portuguese. And I understood it!
=) I was super happy about that. What cool talks! I really enjoyed
myself and the Spirit that it brought to me. The brethren are sure
super in-tune to what people need. I noted in Priesthood Session
especially that every single talk was on Priesthood Authority. Wow!

Anyhow, life moves on very rapidly; I will hit 9 months this week. It
doesn't feel that long. I don't know how to feel about it, but it's
exciting. Elder Borden hits his year mark at around the same time I
hit my 9 month mark. We celebrated today (we had pancakes!). Our
house is a lot of fun, but we're searching for a new place: 6
missionaries is too many missionaries for one apartment. We'll
probably find a new place this week. We're excited!

I've been thinking a lot about our weaknesses lately. Where do they
come from? Well, if we consult Ether 17:27, we know that weaknesses
are given to us by God. They are a part of our nature. And, through
Him, we can turn them into strengths. Does that mean that Satan
doesn't use our weaknesses to his advantage? Of course he does.
That's a huge way that we're tempted. He will pile so much on top of
us that if we don't watch, pray, and keep the commandments we'll
inevitably fall. That's his plan. Use our weaknesses to make us
fall. What's God's plan? Use our weaknesses to see that we are
nothing and--ultimately-- to turn us into something. Weaknesses are
not inherently horrid. They are simply that: weaknesses. All we can
do is find them, recognize them, and start to weed them out through
divinely given power. Alone, we are so small... But when we call on
the powers of heaven, there's not a thing that Satan can do to us. He
will lose. We just have to join the winning team.

Well, my time's a-going. I love you all. Stay safe, stay clean, and
stay awesome!

Elder Cody R. Eckman

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