[Received 26 October 2015]
Well, it's definitely been a week. It's hard to imagine that a week's already gone by, but I guess I just have to accept it and move forward with this week. :)
First thing, however, isn't much of a happy topic, but Elder Taylor has just gotten worse over the weekend, and our mission president is thinking about sending him home to recover. There's a lot of other things involved, but I'm asking (more like pleading, to be honest) each of you to say a small prayer for Elder Taylor. This week's been rough on both of us, but I'd ask you to pray for him. I don't really think it matters what religion you are, since I know that Heavenly Father will answer all the prayers of His children as each of us ask in faith. Thank you so much!
Now, there honestly isn't much else to this week besides that, except for the fact that we had the opportunity to meet with Elder M. Russell Ballard of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles on Saturday afternoon, along with Elder L. Whitney Clayton of the Presidency of the Seventy, and Elder Scott Runea of the First Quorum of Seventy. Besides the amazing fact that we had an Apostle of the Lord with us, the meeting was spectacular! Honestly, I'd thought (when they told us we were going to be meeting with an Apostle) that Elder Ballard was going to make sure we understood what we were doing wrong, and then challenge us to fix it. Instead, his message to us was about being joyful in the work we're here to do, and to live as righteously as possible so that we can be effective ministers of the Lord, and to be able to have the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost with us to take to all the world. It was such an amazing meeting, and I've boiled it down to a basic scripture that I felt most impressed by during this meeting, though they never said it. The scripture is in the book of Doctrine and Covenants, section 18, verse 10, which says "Remember the worth of souls is great in the sight of God." It stuck out so much to me because each of the speakers talked about how we should be remembering, at all times, that we're dealing with people's salvation, that we're dealing with people who are truly living life, with all of its attendant trials, suffering, blessings, good times, hard times, and everything else. We should always remember to treat these people as the children of Heavenly Father that they are, no matter what. I really loved it, and it's helped to encourage me as well as I try and help Elder Taylor the best I can because I know that even though he's discouraged in the work, even though he hasn't been feeling well, even though sometimes I get frustrated with what we can't really do at the moment, I have to remember that Heavenly Father still loves Elder Taylor just as much as He loves me.
I pray that each of us will remember to "love one another", even as Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ love each of us. Then, as we turn to each other in love, and as we seek to help better ourselves and those around us, the Lord will pour out blessings such as we can't comprehend. I know it.
I love y'all, and again I ask for everyone to just say a small prayer on behalf of Elder Taylor. I'll write again next week!
-Elder Conrad Hamilton
Keep Smiling! :D