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Heather Ridge Ward

Hello all:

Well, I guess you all deserve an update about my new area. I'm now serving in the Heather Ridge Ward, South Area. I'm back in the same district in which I started my mission-- the Crestmoor District. I am with a great Samoan missionary-- Elder Westerlund. So far, over all the dinner appointments, I have managed to keep up with him, and on a few occasions, even out-eat him. This is a significant feat, and I do take some pride in the accomplishment of keeping the mouth-stuffing pace with a Polynesian missionary. Downside: half my pants don't fit anymore. 3 transfers in a car in Foothills and one week stuffing myself here has taken its toll on the scales.

We have some great work going on here-- several investigators that area getting very close to baptism. I am excited for the success we expect There's likely going to be 2 baptisms over the next two transfers, and hopefully more on the way.

I've been getting more and more anxious as my 18-month mark approaches. Time is ticking by faster than my 24-speed can keep up with it. This is my 5th to last transfer. Considering how quickly the last 3 went, I'm really worried that I won't be able to get done all that I want to do in that amount of time. I'm nowhere near the level of missionary I want to eventually be, and I have so little time to rise to it.

My frustrations in that light remind me of the story my seminary teacher, Bro. Bonham, told me about his high school days. He ran track, and when the season began, he seemed to hit a wall. No matter how much he practiced and exerted himself every day, every week, he consistently ran the same time every single race for 4 consecutive races. Frustrated, he went to his coach, and voiced his disappointment. The coach listened, then quietly took out his records of the races, and gave them to Bro. Bonham. Each week, his running time decreased by a few fractions of a second. His coach then leaned back and said, "You may not have seen your progress. On that big shot clock, you only see the minutes and seconds. But I see the growth in between."

I have thought of that story a lot on my mission. There have been many times I have felt like I've hit a wall, and that all my studying, all my praying, and all my efforts have been in vain. And I have often felt discouraged by the seeming lack of progress and growth in my investigators and less-actives, and in myself. But I have been gratefully surprised when every once in a while, the Lord lets me know of the progress behind the scenes, and I get a glimpse of the growth currently invisible to my eyes. I just have to remember that "by small and simple means are great things brought to pass" (Alma 37:6).

Also attached: Marcos (an investigator I taught in the Orchard Ward) was finally baptized by the Assistants. So glad to see him make that covenant.

I hope you all have a great week this week in your various locations. I love you all!

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