Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas Growth

Merry Christmas Everyone!!

The people are starting to get busy this week in the streets of Kranj
as Christmas approaches... tonight. This week has largly been one
preparing for Christmas and contacting old people we had met before
and haven't seen much of since.

Last Thursday, we had a mission wide Christmas party in Zagreb with
all the missionaries in Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia, and Bosnia coming
together to see each other, play some games, have a white elephant gift exchange, and a
devotional. It was a great experience being able to really see for the
first time every person who is in my mission. It also really
emphacised how isolated Slovenia is from the rest of the mission.
Basically, because Serbo-Croatian and Bosnian is all the same
language, and there aren't too many visa troubles between the
countries, all the other contries move between eachother. Slovenia,
however, while the language is still quite similar, it is quite
different (especially for Serbo-Croatians understanding Slovene) and
visas for Slovenia are really difficult to get because we're a border
country of the EU. So all the Slovenes know each other and we all move
between the 4 towns in Slovenia with each other. There's a whole other
world outside of Slovenia!

But it was fantastic to see Sister Giles and Sister Compare, my MTC
sisters. It was also a fantastic spiritual and learning experience
where I learned may things regarding how I can change and be better.

Life and the gospel is a process, not a destination or things to learn
and do. Yes, the steps of our days are made up of things to learn and
do, but are not the complete whole. We never stop moving. We are
either progressing or regressing. We can not stay in a point exactly
the same. We are either being tried and tested to be able to grow
through our challenges, or we can be destructive and destroy the
progress we make, or simply sit and let the progress we have made
simply decay.

The choice of which direction we go, who we become, and how we effect
others as to who they can become, however, plays out in the quiet
corners of our minds. What do we choose to focus on? Do we nurture the
seeds of trial and growth, or water the seeds of doubt and denial?
Sometimes it may seem easier to go the way of denial and doubt, easy
only because we can do it through our own power. But when we understand
and begin to harness the power of the sacrificial atonement of Jesus
Christ, the easy way is no longer the doubt and destruction, but
instead the challenges, trials, and growth; made easy through His
strength, understanding, and love.

The easy destructive path becomes the difficult path. The difficult
beneficial path becomes the easy path.

The Christmas season can be difficult for many. But what is beneficial
for yourself and others doesn't have to be difficult. Take a step
back. Look at the eternal reasons of why you are doing what you do.
You have help greater than you can imagine avalible for you.

Vesel Božič all and srečno novo leto!

-Starešina Benson

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