Week 6: The Holy Spirit Guides

Oct 15, 2022

Hello everyone! I hope everyone is doing well, this week has been kind of weird for me and the other elders and sisters. The week started off great and we all got our travel information for our flight to Cambodia! We are all so excited and can't wait to go to the field. We fly from Salt Lake City to Seattle, then Seattle to Seoul, Korea, then from Seoul to Cambodia. We're all on the same flight and I think most of us are super excited to eat at McDonald's and other things that we don't have at the MTC and won't have in Cambodia. 

This week Elder Wesemann and I had our second lesson in Khmer! We taught about prophets and how they receive revelation for the whole church and how we can receive revelation for ourselves. It went really well, and I really felt the Spirit as Elder Wesemann and I were sharing our testimonies. I feel pretty good so far about teaching lessons and gospel related topics in Khmer, but we have all noticed lately that we don't know how to have a normal conversation in Khmer very well and it's hard to speak about anything in general. One of our teachers, Nekru (female teacher) Nixon, gave us some great advice this week though as we've been stressing about going to Cambodia soon. She told us, "Be the best testifying companion that you can be" because we may not know much, but we can testify of what we do know and what we believe in and that's what is going to help others come unto Christ. That honestly made me feel so much better about starting off the mission not knowing much.

Speaking of revelation, Elder Wesemann and I had a really cool experience today. After lunch, half of our district and the sisters went to the temple this morning and did baptisms for the dead and confirmations. It was such a great experience and I'm so glad we were able to do it together. While we were leaving the temple, we saw this guy just sitting on a bench in the front of the temple and I didn't think much of it at first, but then Elder Wesemann had a feeling that we should go over and talk to him. I thought it was weird at first because it's pretty normal for people to just be at the temple pondering and visiting, but I knew that the Spirit was telling us to talk to the man for a reason, so we went back to talk to the man. When we walked up to him, he had tears in his eyes and that's when I knew that the Spirit guided us to him. Nothing crazy happened, but he told us that he and his girlfriend had just broken up and he was having a rough day. We had a great conversation with him about his mission and our experience so far at the MTC. I'm so glad we were able to talk to him for a bit and lift his spirits in any way we could. That's what this life is about. Lifting each other up and to "Remember the worth of souls is great in the sight of God." (D&C 18:10)

God loves us all, no matter what we think or what anyone else thinks. Our teacher, Lokru (male teacher) Hardy is one of the strongest men I know. His faith and testimony of the Gospel is so strong, and he is one of the greatest examples I have in my life right now. I won't share too much detail, but he has been through a lot in his life. He is a convert and was baptized with his mother when he was 15 years old and then decided to serve a mission when the time came. While he was on his mission, his mother unfortunately passed away and he made the difficult decision to finish serving the full two years. Then he came home from his mission his sister passed away. On Monday we had class with him and it just seemed like a normal day as we went through our class and at the end of class he broke the news to us that he would be gone for a while because his sister was in the hospital and would pass away within the next couple of days. I was in shock. I could not imagine the pain and trials he went through as he has lost so many important people in his life. We thought he was going to be gone for at least a couple of weeks to spend time with his dad and other family, but to our surprise he was in class this morning and teaching all of us with a big smile. It amazes me how strong his faith is in the Lord and how in tune he is with the Spirit. He may not know why the Lord specifically does things sometimes, but no matter what it is, he knows that it is all part of Heavenly Father's plan and that God loves him. I have yet to see him cry, but he never fails to make me cry during class.

Elder Ronald A. Rasband and his wife came and spoke in our devotional this Tuesday and it was amazing to have one of the twelve apostles speak to us. His message to us was simple, but that's what made it so great. He told us to "make good decisions" and to "Always be worthy of a temple recommend for the rest of your lives" because as we make good decisions, they will lead us to greater decisions. And if we are always worthy of a temple recommend then we will be worthy to be in the presence of our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ someday. There is another great talk by Elder Rasband called, "Special Lessons" and I invite all of you to watch it, even my non-member friends. It talks about how God loves all of us and how we can be more like Him.

Thank you for all of your prayers and support! I feel the love and I hope all of you know I am praying for all of you as well.


Elder Mendenhall