This last week has been just awesome. I`m not counting anymore, but.. I`ve passed 19 months out here and its only about to get faster because we are ever so close to launching digital missionary work over here! President W called an emergency office staff meeting last friday after a Zone Train Meeting and I wish I could share the details, but I`ve been sworn to secrecy and I`m not risking anything haha! Needless to say, we are very very close to something big.
Last week we taught a lot. Thats great and all, but none of them were actually our investigators. My companion actually got to help some of the sister missionaries in my first area, Akashi, teach one of their Brazilian investigators over skype. It was way cool! The poor guy was so whiped out after translating back and forth from Portugese to English he just about fell over. We got to teach another lesson with the Sisters here in Kobe. We met with this guy from Iran who has a lot of curiosity about Christianity. He`s so solid. I basically consider him one of our investigators too because the Sister`s and I have taught every single lesson we`ve had with him. Its a bummer because he went back to Iran for the next month and a half so we won`t see him for a while, but the sisters printed out a couple conference talks and gave him a list of solid scriptures to read on the plane so we`ll see him when he comes back! I had a really cool experience with him in the lesson. Last week I got a letter in the mail from my friend serving in Tennessee and she shared with me one of her favorite scriptures, Alma 38:2-3. She explained that she loved to put her name in those verses when she was feeling down so as soon as I read that I looked up the verses. I just about cried because of the spirit that I felt. It really hit me how much Heavenly Father accepts the work that I`m doing here. I think its safe to say my own worst enemy is well, me, and those verses helped me to realize that I shouldn`t beat myself up so much out here! Well in the lesson with our Iranian we were talking about how likening the scriptures unto ourselves and I shared that little piece of revelation with him. It really helped him see how we read the scriptures and how they can be so important for us in our lives. I absolutely love the Book of Mormon!
It's raining today. I think it has rained on Preparation Day for the last month. Anyway, we`re getting so close to finishing the website for the mission and we`re getting really excited. Apparently President W was on the phone with the director of the MTC, President H, and they were going over some of the things for the website. President H asked if he could see what we had so far on the portal so President W gave him the address. He typed it in and said, "well that can`t be right that looks terrible!" President W says, "Oh that's the wrong one. Try this one." (Silence). President H, "Oh that looks awesome!" We were honored. We`re going to be really busy for the next little while and I`m so excited. My role in all of this is training the Zone Leaders and District Leaders so they can go out and train their missionaries. Talk about a pretty big assignment, right? It's so cool and I`m as humbled as ever to be here.
The church is still 100% true. Joseph Smith was and is a Prophet of God. I know that's true. We really do have a Father in Heaven that loves us perfectly as well as a Savior in Jesus Christ. This is all true. God speaks and He`s willing to bless us if we`ll just put in what effort we have. I`ve seen His hand in my life and I will never be able to deny He`s there. This is His work and I am nothing but a servant. I love you all and I hope you have a great week.
Elder Jeffrey Maxwell Giles