Tuesday, June 21, 2011

From Vlad on my way to Korea

Well everybody,

Hello From Vlad. I've made it here once again on another trip to get to Korea. It was a crazy flight to get here. Well, mostly, it was just the timing. Our flight left Irkutsk this morning at 1:20 and got into Vlad around 7ish. Needless to say, I didn't sleep much at all. So basically, I pulled my first all nighter on the mission, and right now I'm suffering for it. Not that I really had much of a choice. My eyelids are wanting to close every time I blink and let me drift off to sleep. Elder Zamora has already fallen asleep a couple times while writing home. :)

The spelling check on this computer is definitely set to Russian because everything I type is underlined in red. And if anyone is reading this or can see my computer screen from a distance, they probably think I'm completely illiterate and deficient in the Russian language.

Dad, I wish you a wonderful Father's Day! :) Hope it's a great one filled with lots of wonderful memories about how awesome of a Dad you really are. Thanks for all you've taught me and continue to teach me through your guiding words and example.

So, this past week has been as always another great one. Due to a slight lack in investigators at the present, we've been working more and more with members and less actives which has been fun because you get to know more people. I truly have loved getting to know people. We've also had lots of opportunities in trying to take advantage of finding people through contacting. Not the most effective, but you get to talk to so many wonderful people. I met a woman on the bus yesterday who said hello to me just before I got off. She said, "Hello Bush! Do you remember me? You invited me to English club." Unfortunately, I couldn't remember her name although she did seem familiar. You talk with so many people and the Russian culture doesn't usually branch out into a vary wide list of names. They tend to have the same names because it just works in their culture. For example, their middle name is called an Ochestva which is created from your father's name. For example, if my father's name was Sergei, my ochestva would be Sergeiivich. Or if Vladimir then Vladimirivich.For a girl, the ending becomes ~ona instead of ~ivich. And basically, if your father's name strays from the usual lexicon of Russian names, then your ochestva turns out kind of weird. Anyways, it was really cool to meet her again and talk with her and her family. She seemed very excited to see us again and said they were planning on coming to English club tonight. Remember, you may invite a ton of people, and immediately after, you may not see any result. But through time, you never know the results that could appear.

Probably the most exciting thing that happened this past week was that at sports night, I fell while playing soccer and scrapped up my leg and tweaked my shoulder a little. But, I'm completely fine. Just made things interesting. And of course, when any kind of trauma occurs, suddenly everyone becomes a doctor and is super concerned for you and tells you that you have to clean the blood off your leg. It really was no big deal at all. Not that I'm complaining that people were trying to care about me. It's just that it really wasn't a big deal and I would have rather just kept on playing without being troubled with cleaning it all up.

As I've reached this point in my mission, I've done a whole lot of pondering. A lot of introspective pondering. A lot of self analyzing. I realize I have so many imperfections and things that the Lord wants me to change and improve. The trick is to never let it get you down. Don't be discouraged when life gets hard, when your circumstances are less than ideal, and when you're not satisfied with how you're personally doing. Go forward with faith, relying on the Lord. And He shall guide thee. I've come to realize that lately, I haven't been relying on the Lord at the magnitude that I was earlier in my mission. I've slowly allowed myself to think that there are some things that Elder Bush can handle, that he can do on his own. You must be humble in this work, in this earthly life if you expect the Lord's matchless help. I'm trying to change and become more like the Savior and the greatest obstacle I think is trying not to get overwhelmed. Just take it a step at a time each day. I know the Lord loves me and expects more from me as His devoted servant. It has been a privilege thus far to serve as His representative, and I pray that I will be able to do an even greater job in using the Lord's time to fulfill His mission, not my own.

I'm super stoked to be able to have the opportunity to go to the temple. And because of changes in policy, Sister Brigham in our visa group will not be going alone with us but her Russian companion will be allowed to accompany her. Which is super exciting because now Sister Volkova will get the chance to go to the temple with us! I'm super excited for her! I'm really looking forward to the blessings that the temple brings. The peace, comfort, guidance, and revelation we can receive from the Spirit felt in the House of the Lord. It's incomparable. Don't ever take the temple for granted. I have a strong hunch attending the temple this next week will help me grow a lot and realize how I can better become the missionary the Lord desires I become.

Elder Bush