Wednesday, August 3, 2011

New Opportunties for Learning and Serving!

Talofa Lava                                                                                                                   Aug. 1, 2011

Hey everybody how’s everything going?!? I hope great and all is well!!
Boy do I have some big news. Starting off with, on Saturday night I received a call from my zone leader telling Pedersen he is being transferred to Salelologa in Savaii and going to be comps with Sua (yep big Sua from Aleisa) and when I asked who was coming in Peck told me I was TRAINING!! I was so shocked!! I felt unsure of myself and still do but am keeping a prayer in my heart and keeping up the faith. I don’t feel ready, but as President said just today we were picked to receive the opportunity and this will build us and gives us the blessing of introducing a new elder to the mission. This morning, being Monday, I had to get on a boat with others being transferred from Savaii at 6:00 am to come over to Upolu to have a two hour long training session with President Leota to introduce us to the new program for training elders. It is for 12 weeks and is amazingly inspired and revelation from the Lord. It is put together so perfectly and if done right will help both the trainee and the trainer. Awesome Stuff I got to say. Oh my new comp’s name is Elder Too Faalogo and he is a Samoan from Australia. By his picture he looks like a big guy and it should be fun, but I am super nervous. I want to be ready and help him out the best I can. It was an awesome meeting and I love President Leota and am so grateful for him and for his confidence in me as well.

With that news I also bear some very sad and not so good news. So we had planned our baptism with Ruta on Saturday with her wedding as well and everything was going just as planned with everyone who needed to be involved and the interview went great with Peck and he told us she is a great lady and that they were planning to come to the baptism after he had finished the interview the next day. We were all set and arrived at the chapel in Papa and were waiting, but nobody showed up and it was nearing the time of the marriage, actually a little past it. When all of the sudden Ruta walked up to us and asked to talk to us in a room saying something had happened!? Confused and worried we went into a classroom and right as we sat down she started bawling!? It was so shocking, she was crying so hard she could barely tell us what had happened. She told us all was set and then last night all of the sudden her husband to be just changed his mind (who she had been living with and everything) and actually kicked her out telling her to go back to Upolu to live with her family!? We were so surprised since HE was the one who challenged her to quit smoking so they could get her baptized and wanting to get married and everything. He has been a steady active member and I don't know what happened, but all we heard from Ruta is how he no longer wanted to marry her and stuff, so ya just shocked. The thing is we can't go talk to the guy as where he lives is faasa (not allowed against the law of the village) for us to even go there. The matai of the village said only one religion can be there. We even had a church building there and now it is not being used because it can’t. Crazy stuff and authority here.

Needless to say I went home and was pretty put out that Saturday and prayed and didn't know what to do or read to feel peaceful again. Finally I felt inspired to call Elder Smithing for help and he said he would do a search and call me back and he did in 10 minutes (inspiration received) referring me to read in the latest General Conference pg 15 which happened to be on the Atonement and how it covers all pain. Amazing. I studied it and prayed and felt so much better just one of those moments where the Lord reached down and lifted me up saying all will be ok and to get to work and do your best. I felt so sad that day and just was put out and then was so blessed, I loved it. Total turn around day. I know and have a firm Testimony of the Atonement. I know Jesus is the Christ our Savior and Redeemer. He has felt all of our pains and knows us all personally and all we will ever go through. And as the talk went at the very end it said these words which are absolutely amazing -- "His Grace is Sufficient!!" I know that for a fact in all we do He is there, all we go through and all we feel. I love Him and I know He loves me and loves all of us.

Well I got to go. I love you all and love it here!! I know this church is true and is led by a living prophet. I know President Monson receives revelation for us and holds all the priesthood keys. I know the Book of Mormon is true through and through. In fact I just finished it in Samoan on Sunday. Awesome!! Such a great help in the Language and will continue to be. I know Joseph Smith is a prophet and he restored the church in its fullness to the earth. I know Jesus is the Christ. I know God is our loving Heavenly Father. Keep Strong!! Remember that and His Grace is Sufficient. Thanks for everything!! ou te alofa ia te outou uma!!

Elder Cody John Walker

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