Sunday, December 13, 2015

November 29th, 2015 : Thankagiving on an Island

It's really weird not having seasons anymore because I went through the whole summer in Utah and then just as it was starting to cool down, I came to the Sun, or as some people call it Pohnpei. When it rains here it’s really cool because it is always really warm rain and we are so used to it now that we just keep walking and umbrellas are just not very useful because you are already drenched in sweat because of the humidity. When it rains on a hot day the water hits the pavement and then pretty much evaporates and so when you are walking or driving it’s just steaming up water and it’s really cool to watch but not really fun to walk through. I think I have finally adjusted to Crocs and they are really just part of life now. I am honestly tempted to come back after my mission and wear Crocs. This week has really made me appreciate all of the different cultures around the world. Having Thanksgiving on an Island was definitely different. While everyone else was doing their Thanksgivings with Rice, Coconuts, and maybe they got some special corned beef. The people here really are so humble and really don't have anything at all. I'm pretty sure if I sold all the clothes that I had and all the things I have right now I could live in Pohnpei for a year without working. Even though the people here don't have much, they can still make it through with nothing. That has been one of the most motivating things on my mission so far, knowing that these people haven't tasted of the Fruit of the Tree of Life. They haven't had the Gospel in their lives or seen the difference that is makes. We have the best teammates anyone could imagine in God and Jesus Christ. It's amazing that people don't realize that they are playing on the same team and that our Father in Heaven wants to play with us. He wants to help us and help us become better and practice. I've really noticed the difference in the life of our Recent Convert compared to the people that live around him. We are currently teaching all the people that live by him and they are all progressing really well. And it all started with one man, who went down every wrong road there was until finally he found the right one. He found the path not by asking for help but by trial and error. Now that he has found it, he holds onto it so tight and wants to share with others how they can have it too. He really has such a strong testimony and I know he will help others in their lives. He will receive the priesthood and baptize his daughter. I have really come to realize how powerful the priesthood is and how important it is. Being able to say that I hold the authority to work in the name of God is truly something we take for granted. Also priesthood blessings are blessings where God works through man to bless other men. It all starts from God. Everything good is of God. I know that the closer you are to God, the more he can bless you. He wants to bless everything so much but sometimes we are too far away to receive the blessings. I was reading about how the people in the Book of Mormon would pitch their tents in the direction of the temple. Are our homes directed to the Savior? Do we have a house of worship, a house of prayer, a house of fasting, and a house of love? If not, change it. Our whole purpose on Earth is to return to our Heavenly Father with our Families. I know that God wants us to return to Him more than we can imagine. I love you all and I know that God loves you all. I hope that you will keep your homes like the temple, and be a house of God. Even if we are not reading scriptures and stuff like that, even just a peaceful atmosphere will help fix any problem. I love you all! And I know God loves you!
-Elder Hanson

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