Monday, January 5, 2015

Merry Christmas! (from 12/29/14)

Merry Christmas! 
  So I didn't get a p-day due to the Christmas activities last week so I'll fill ya'll in for two weeks. Maybe we can squeeze it into one email. I finished the Book of Mormon again last week for what I think is the 3rd time on my mission. I do love that book. We taught some fun lessons these last two weeks. We had one of the assistants Elder Lao come and follow us in an exhange and it was great to have him. We finally taught the referral family that a member has been preparing for us. They are wonderful! I was called upon by the sister missionaries to give a priesthood blessing to them because they have been having bad dreams in their house. They feel like there is an evil spirit there. However, the next day one of them tells me they were dreaming last night and were about to have a bad dream but then their companion showed up and said "Don't be scared you got a priesthood blessing already." And then apparently I and my companion showed up and protected her in her dream from all the scary things. So that was cool. I also had an exchange with Elder Elieson and he is an excellent missionary and has a powerful testimony. We discussed, in companion study, about the faith it required the Brother Of Jared and his people to climb into barges with no way to see where you are going or steer either. They had to rely wholly on the Lord for nearly a full year. I also learned a lot about the Sabbath and how to Hallow it. How that it is a day for the Lord to perform his work of purification on us if we will do his work and not our own. While contacting with Elder Elieson we found a guy that we free and wanted to learn so we sat and taught him right there. And as we were teaching him the second councilor in the bishopric walked by and joined in to help. It was a real blessing! At Church last Sunday the primary chorister came up to me after the sacrament was passed and asked me to play for the primary program. Apparently their pianist bailed. So I was playing a bunch of songs I have never played and some I didn't even recognize. My prayer was simple: please bless my performance for the welfare of my soul and the souls of those listening. It went well despite the children singing "follow the prophet" so fast that It was all I could do to play the right hand at times. We taught Seyha about tithing and he had another one of those "aha!" moments. Every lesson we have with him he listens really intently and then at some point in the middle he goes, "Ohhh I understand." Its just great! We called a few referrals given to us from English class and one of them said he was free right then and wanted to meet us at the church. So we rode over and met him an his friend and committed them to baptism. Unfortunately neither is in our area, but when we walked out of the room the other Elders were there and we introduced them immediately. Bunly and Thah are doing really well right now! They had some struggles this week but we encouraged them with the good word of God and they have seen a huge difference in their life! They fight less, they try to be more patient and loving, they are kinder to their children, they are truly changing! We also had an FHE at my recent convert's house Srey Ny and Na. We played a game kind of like "I'm going camping and I'm going to take..." But instead we named fruits. You had to memorize all the fruits that everyone else said in the right order as well as say another fruit. Half of the fruit they mentioned I didn't even recognize! But it was super fun! Last week I conducted an exchange with Elder Sok in his area. I also was asked by my mission president to sing a special musical number on Christmas with three other Elders while he accompanied. So we went to practice and found that he had written the song! Its a neat missionary song and it was so fun to sing! Christmas eve I opened my package from home and found in it a bunch of goodies! A lovely tie, a great book by Elder Robert D. Hales, delicious candy, and a bike meter that tells me speed and distance and other fun stuff. At 10 am on Christmas eve we rode over to the South Stake center for a service project where we made gift bags for the youth of the church here. Then we ate Khmer curry and bread for lunch before watching a missionary talent show. After the talent show President Moon challenged us all to a push-up contest. Whoever does more than him gets an american candy bar. I was all for it. He cranked out 40 on his knees but while I was doing them I heard he did 60 so I pushed out 61. Don't worry I got a Twix guys. We also played a large version of "don't eat Pete" but they called it "don'teat Santa" so we would feel more festive. We did a gift exchange and I managed to get a snap-on spider man watch. That one will have to wait till after the mission to wear (or never). We had a mission picture and sung carols before dinner and ice cream with brownies AND cookies. So good. Christmas day brought with it some training from president on how to be balanced missionaries and being diligent. Seeking diligently, teaching diligently, laboring diligently, and preparing the way of the Lord. They fed us a KFC basket for Christmas lunch and sent us home where Elder Keo and I went with the bishop and ward council to go caroling to certain poor members and bring with our songs of joy a whole cooked chicken and a box of noodles. The 26th was my time to skype my beloved family. Wow I love them all so much! I miss you guys. But their faces were smiling and lovely and the faces of my 3 new nephews are just adorable as all get -out. On Saturday we met a less active named Banha and he was asking us what to do when he doesn't feel like being spiritual. He wants to read the scriptures but when he does he feels annoyed with it. We found out that he was spending most of his free time sleeping or playing on Facebook. As hard as you try, you cannot have one foot in Zion and the other in Babylon. We encouraged him to put the Lord first and to not be weary in well doing. Do not spend your time on that which has no worth for it will distract you from the whisperings of the spirit and dull your sensitivity. When you do that which is good , Satan tries all the much harder to tempt you to do wrong. Fear not! Do not be dismayed! For the Lord is on our side. He shall be  our rearward and shall go before us and be on our right and on our left. His angels shall surround us to bear us up. We must only do that which he asks of us. Follow Him. Learn of Him. Take His yoke upon you, for His yoke is easy and His burden is light. Read and re-read His Holy word found in the scriptures. Apply His teachings in your life daily. Council with Him in all your doings and He shall direct thy paths.  Light is Glory, Glory is intelligence. To become Glorified like our Heavenly Father, we must first receive light, or knowledge. That light, when received, must be applied. Or in other words, we must apply the knowledge of the gospel into our lives. Only then can we receive more light. If we reject light then we cannot receive more, but even that which we have will be taken away from us until what we once knew was foolishness unto us. However, if we receive the light, the knowledge of the doctrines of the savior, and we apply that light, then we receive more light. Which light continues to grow brighter and brighter into the perfect day. This is exaltation. This is life eternal, to know Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ. When we know such things prefectly, when we have a perfect knowledge, then we have perfect light, like the sun at noon day. Then we are glorified like unto the Father because we know all things like unto Him and we use that knowledge in perfection. Only then are we allowed into the Celestial Kingdom, which Glory, as it happens to be, is depicted as the Glory of the sun at noon day. No man can be saved in ignorance. It is requisite that we hunger for light and knowledge that we may learn and accept the doctrines of Christ. All of them. Only then can we inherit all the Father has in the highest degree of Glory in the Celestial Kingdom. With love I bear my witness of the Savior, that He lives. In His holy name, Jesus Christ. Amen
Elder Lyle R. Brewer

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