Email From James - September 12, 2011

What a great week this past week was. Oh it was so so good. I can't even describe it. I can see even more changes that are going to be happening as I approach my last 6 months in the field. When it's your last 6 months in the field, there's a saying that that is a missionaries time to sine, and I truly believe it will be for me. I am really trying to be the best I can be and serve strongly til the end. Missionary work is so great and it really helps you stretch and grow.

We met with a ton of members this past week. A lot of them are less active and don't come to church anymore so we have been really working to try to get the reactivated again. It was a lot of fun and it was really great to start to creat a friendship with them. They all had good concerns about why they don't come to church anymore and we have great goals and ideas on how we want to get them to come back to church. We meet with a kid a lot, Maksim, who is such a great kid but just has no desire to come to church. We read the Book of Mormon with him because he says he doesn't understand it when he reads by himself and he doesn't really have the drive to read it on his own. Haha. So we met with hima lot this past week. We are in 1 Nefio with him and it has been helping him a lot. In the past, we have come over to his house to get him up to come to church but that didn't really work in the past. Usually his mom and him start arguing and it's not good. I can tell you more about it after the mission, mom will like the stories, but we just couldn't get a way to get him to come to church. Our last meeting for the week on saturday night was with him and we read the Book of Mormon and it was really good because I could see in him the desire to keep reading the Book of Mormon and the spirit was coming back into him. Well, he finally came to church on sunday. It was such a miracle and I was so happy to see him there. Not only that, Vladas, another preist age kid who doesn't come to church that much, came too. Unfortuanately only to Sacrament meeting, but hey that's a start. They like me a lot because I always talk about music with them and what not. It's just my little sceam to help them be active more in the church. You can't tell. :D They are truly great and I see a lot of potential out of both of them.

We also got to serve a lot out in the village, outside of the city, at a members house. Her name is Diana. She is totally a power mom. At her small little house, which is pretty much a farm, she takes care of her 5 kids ( ages from 5 - 20) and her two little grandkidsand she isn't married. She just went through the temple for the first time this past week and it has been amazing to see her. She has such a new light and spirit about her. She loved the temple so much. So we went over for two days to help build up a part of the wall on her home, with bricks, and then put up the plasic linning on the outside of her home. It was a lot of fun and I felt like I was a temple builder because Valentinas, a member, would mark off part of the brick that needed to be cut off then I would take a hammer and beat out the part that needed to be cut off. We kept quoting the Joseph Smith Movie as we were doing it in lithaunain. :D So that was pretty much the first day.

The second day was so much fun for me. I began to talk to the little kids the day before because they would just watch what we would do and were a little shy around us. They are so funny cause they just run all over and get into everything. Well the second day I just entertained them the whole time while Diana cleaned her house then my comps and valentinas kept working on the house. She said she wished I lived closer :D I told her I had training from a little brother and that I love playing with kids so much. So we played tag, putting things in mailboxes and pretending we had mail, picking cucumbers from the garden, me climbing trees and picking out apples to eat and apricots, juggling the apples and apircots I picked, drawing little people and the kids on the wall before it got built up, tag some more, running races, jumping over the fence becasue it was really cool to them when I did, doing tricks on a little skateboard. Oh I had a blast. It was one of the funnest moments of my mission. I will send you a pic of the kids. They are adorable. Little Jovita, the girl, had the cuttest little voice in the whole world and she is the cuttest girl I have ever seen. If I have a daughter like her, I would be so happy. She would come up to me and say in her cute little voice, and by the way, lithuanian is the so much more adorable than in english. I am going to miss that terribly. She would come up and say, " einame" which means lets go. And I would say where, and she would lead me somewhere to show me something. She is 4. Hahah at lunch she would wink at me. It was so funny :D Little Andrus, the kids with the blow thing in his mouth next to her, is my little best friend, other than Jovita. Him and I would play tag and run around all over. He is 6 and has a ton of energy, until after we ran around a lot. He said, how did you learn to run around so fast. :D Hahah still got all my energy. Aw it was so much fun to play with both of them and the picture I am sending is my favorite pic out of the whole mission. I have another cute one of Jovita possing and it is so cute. Hahaha I have said cute a lot but they are so cute :D So that was our fun few days. It made me so so happy.

Jovita is the girl, Andrus is the kid next to her. And little Jilijus is putting something in the well in the back :D

I have just been making a lot more chagnes and looking at how I can become a more powerful and in pres. dances' words " miracle missionray". It's been so great to see and it has really helped me to have the spirit more in the work and in my life. My studies are so much more powerful and when I pray, I feel like I am really praying with my father in Heaven. He's has been helping me alot this past week and it has given me the greater desire to work as hard as I can. With hard work, lots of blessings have come. My language keeps picking up faster and faster. It's uncomfortable for me to read from Preach My Gospel in english and I find that the first set of scrips I pick up is my lithuanian ones. :D It's so great and I love it. I wish this country was more popular around the world and the language so I could have a chance to speak it more. I got so much I can do and so much I still need to change but I'm so happy with how far I have come. The Lord has truly strengthened me. I love being in the mission and I thank God everyday I can serve here in the beautiful country of Lietuva.

We will get transfers this week so next week I will let you know what happens. I pray I will get to stay in Šiauliai longer because we have a lot of great plans for this next transfer and I want to be a part of it. OOo it's thundering outstide. It's really cool. It has been getting pretty cold this past week. We have had to wear our coats it got so cold. Oh...winter is slowly approaching to unlesh it's terror upon us. It will be the last battle and fight with winter her for me. :D

So about those scrips. What some missionaries had was the Book of Mormon, with the DC with the pearl of great price together separate of the bible.So they had them in two books but they were smaller versions but looked just like standard scrips with the gold pages but smaller. I really liked those because they are a lot lighter to carry around and are more comfortable. If you could find those that would be so great and helpful. I like how they are separate. If not, mom suggested a small quad and that would be good. Just something a lot smaller and lighter with all of the books would be good to have. I have a feeling I am going to need some. Let me know what you find.

For the patriarchal blessings, I would have to say that I wish I would have understand how powerful they really are. I understood what they were and what was happening but I never realized how amazing that blessing truly really is. Now in my mission and seeing how true the gospel is and what we truly have in our day, communication from our Heavenly Father through a living prophet, a patriarchal blessing is something of great value. It's personal and it's straight to you from God. It's what he wants you to know, what you need to do, and what you can become as long as you are obedient and worthy to recieve those promised blessings. I would have to say, tell them to realize how great it really is and really prepare for that day when they get one. Realize that this is your one moment in your life when God is right there speaking to you in clearly heard words. Like when an angel came and spoke to Nefi, when Paul was called to repentance on the way to Damascus, when God and Jesus Christ spoke to Jospeh Smith, calling him by name. It's as real to us as it was to them of old. It's a time not to pass up but it's also a time to recognize and prepare for.

I can't wait to hear from you next week and I look forward every single week to email you. I love you all so much and I hope you have a great week. It's pouring outside yay. :D Thank you so much for all you do for me. I will let you know what happens for transfers next week.

su meile per amžiu amžius,

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