Random Thought: Chicago's version of "The Little Drummer Boy" Is the best ever!Bazinga!!
So this week wasn't full of funny experiences or anything because we had a big mission conference and I had a lot of meetings this week.
We traveled at 1:00am by bus so that we could be in Campo Grande in time for our meeting. We got there at 7:00am and then we went to eat and had our meeting with the mission president. It was awesome and we talked about several things. The rest of the day we helped clean up that chapel because of all the food. Then we went to the house of the second counselor of the mission! He is a great guy and that night we stayed up talking. He shared some personal spiritual experiences that really helped grow my testimony. Also while I was staying there I learned that my wonderful sister, Kati will be serving a mission in PORTUGAL!!!!!!!!!!! (The same mission as my dad!) I literally jumped up and yelled when I read the email!!! PARABÉNS Kati! I am so happy and so proud of you!!
Then the next day we had our Christmas celebration in the morning. It was really funny and we had a lot of skits and laughing but the afternoon was the best. We had our mission tour. This is where a member of the area presidency comes to the mission to give a fireside. This time it was Elder Gavarrett. He is the second counselor in the area presidency! So now I have met and shook the hand of all three members of the Brasil area presidency! Anyway I really really liked him. He is very direct and funny. He gave a bunch of advice and a talked. I know that this man was called of God. One thing he did was allow the Zone Leaders to get up and talk about their zones.He asked us to give an account of each month and explain what has happened. So Elder Maughan and I got up and I started talking about our zone and the baptisms we had each month. In October our zone only had 6 baptisms. I said that and he said,"No in october your zone saved 6 wonderful souls!" We all laughed and I rephrased what I said. He then asked why only 6. I told him that it was because of a lack of unity in our zone. His reaction was funny. He said,"..wait wait wait. You've captured my attention. What do you mean by that?" I said,"Well our zone had problems with Elders forming opinions about one another and then talking bad behind others backs all the time. This ended up discouraging the zone and making us lose our focus." He then said,"Wow, you are very brave to stand up and say that in front of the whole mission. Good job!" Then he went on to the next zone.
I really liked that experience. A principle that I am trying to learn and apply is not only to be honest and sincere but direct as well. I'd like to share an experience of how I applied this. On saturday President Reber did a conference call with all the zone leaders in the south and said that he is giving us more authority and that we can now act in his name without calling and asking him. So Elder Maughan and I decided we wanted to do interviews with all the Elders in our zone on sunday. We wanted to talk about unity and sustaining one another. Well there is a certain Elder in our zone that does not like Elder Maughan and I at all. I had the privilage of doing his interview and I started by asking him how he was and if he needed anything. Then I said,"Alright Elder. I want this conversation to be honest and I want to be direct. Elder I KNOW that you are talking bad about Elder Maughan and I to the other missionaries and to the members. I want to know why." We had a great conversation and by the time we were done we both left the room smiling. He walked over to my companion and said,"Elder Maughan, I talked with Elder Laws and I am going to give you both another chance." Then they started talking and getting along and having a bit of fun.
I know it's a weird testimony but I have a testimony of being honest and direct. One day when we see the Lord, it is how he will act and how he will treat us, honestly and directly.
Com muito amor,
Elder Roman Laws