Monday, March 20, 2017

Elder Corbridge has been out 8 months today! Letter 38

This week was good! Everything has been good.  We had the chance to do some service and watched some Hermanas or sisters mow the lawn for the first time ever!?!?!? priceless!!!!!!! They didn't even know what that mighty machine was, or how to tame that noisy and insufferable beast. First the girls gather around this metal machine and they look at it with a surprised reaction, wondering, how is someone to wake the mighty beast up. A man taught them, but they stared, having no clue, what he was talking about. He left them and they continued to stare. One sister finally said "okay lets get to work!!!!" haha she was puzzled but she was brave enough to touch it. The other sisters gathered around this brave hermana, as she slowly pulled a lever. The beast roared. The girls jumped away from the courageous hermana. Oh, man it was a moment worth capturing!!!!!!

They cut every single strand of grass, going over the line they just cut over and over again and then looked back and said it still looks the same.  Us elders were laughing, but, I kinda felt bad about it. I didn't know if we could help them. So, we kinda didn't, but man, it was so fun watching them mow the lawn for the first time.

The first sister turned around to cut more and almost cut a sister’s foot off. These sisters were doing everything they could to cut that grass, even if it meant losing body parts. One sister lifted the lawn mower and started running thinking she could cut the grass faster that way, but the blade was barely touching the tips of the grass.  She ran around the whole baseball field until she made it to the starting point, realizing she wasn't cutting anything.  Then, the next sister attempted and then the next, all of them wondering why they couldn't do it. There was a friendly old man who showed them how and they were able to go around the field three times in an hour. You have to love sisters, especially, when there trying their best.

It was a good service opportunity. But, it makes me think.. We have scriptures, prophets, leaders, a loving Heavenly Father who wants us to communicate with him, along with a Savior who wants us to use his atonement so we can do things right. Repentance or faith or being baptized or enduring to the end…  all these things have one thing in common. They are the way of life. Elder Larry Corbridge, of the quorum of the seventy said, “Life is to live. It's to live more abundantly.” Now it doesn't mean having all the things of the world, but, things that matter, the things that help us cut down those temptations, rejection, trials and challenges. That insufferable beast as referred to a lawn mower is called the gospel. If we stay true to the gospel, we can make it through that large field…void of temptation or infirmaries and cut them down with the Savior's help or the prophets and apostles help, until the man in charge, says it looks perfect in His eyes. We may find ourselves slipping at times, we may go over some patches, but that's why we have a Savior who loves us and who was willing to die for us so that we could do it right and go over those rough patches with repentance.

I love the gospel! I love the guidance it gives me in life the way to eternal happiness and I love that I'm sharing it with the world in California.

We have so many investigators finding that way. One is so ready to be baptized, she's announcing it to the ward saying "I'm getting baptized!!!!!"Funny... she doesn't know what time or where it's going to be. She just knows that on that day, she will follow the Savior’s example. 

This other sister said she would be baptized with her two boys. It was funny. Bishop and our roommates told us that she wasn't even close to baptism. My companion, Elder Allen and I, we actually roll played it and we were joking, I, jokingly said this, as my companion asked, “So, Sister, will you be baptized?”  In my girliest voice, I said, “Of course, I will!”  My companion laughed so hard. Where was our faith?? But, just as we roll played, so did it happen!!!!! She said she would be baptized with her two boys!

We left that day and told everyone who had doubted that they were getting baptized. We told bishop and he was startled with the reaction of "Jazz??? Wait,Jazz is on date!?!??!?" We happily told him yes. You see Jazz is Sikh and the Sikh religion is kinda hard to change, if you are raised In it. So this is great stuff!!!

The Windshells are getting baptized. So many coming to follow the example of Jesus Christ by being baptized and receiving blessings from heaven. If they endure well, if they live as our Father will have them live and hopefully to live in abundance. I love these people!  They are great people, children of god. Each have a story and a path at different times and different people influencing their lives, for good, for light, for happiness. Families not being a torn apart, people loving one another and raising their heads to find someone who is bleak and seems hopeless or husbands and wives sticking together. What a bright, cheerful world!!!!

Sadly this is not the whole world, but with the help of members, we can change it and that's why there's hope!  That's why there's prophets and apostles to share that hope that light and that truth. Along with missionaries! I'm so happy to share the truth.  With the help of Savior of the world, Jesus Christ, the world is brighter, for He is the light.

I have struggled a lot on my mission because of weakness, because of lack of faith, because I can't see the picture clearly like our Savior, and I'm sure it's true with everyone, we all struggle. But there is always help. There is our loving Heavenly Father, who truly does love us and our Savior. I have found out - even a companion.  My first 3 transfers were awful. My trainer was harsh, my other companion was awesomely awkward and I felt like I was hopeless. I felt weak and I felt insignificant to do the work. I've cried and SAID I WANT TO LEAVE THIS WORK BEHIND BECAUSE THIS IS NOT A PATH I CAN ENDURE LIKE OUR SAVIOR.

There are days where it gets tough, but these last three transfers with different elders, I have found hope. I love Elder Bailey and Elder Houskeeper.  They left 2 weeks ago and are home, but I want them to know that they made a big difference towards my outlook on life. 2 of my favorite companions and they made a big difference. My new companion, Elder Allen, has also made a big difference, helping me to see more of my potential because of his love.

I have seen a difference. Your prayers have made a difference!  If the world would just have each others backs, we wouldn't have to worry about missionaries having to fight a Pakistani! haha that was some crazy news. If there was people loving each other, we wouldn't have to worry about being hopeless. We could talk to each other and feel equal.  It's incredible what this church does for each other - members looking out for members, family members on family members, investigators on investigators.  We found out Sunday that two of our investigators found out that they were taking the lessons and getting baptized the same month and they became best friends.  There is equality in the Lord’s eyes.

I had the chance to talk to this one man. To me, he looked like one of the 3 nephites, just without the tattoos.  This man walked towards us and said hello, all friendly! He asked if we were Mormons and we gladly told him yes and his response was surprising, “Awesome! I love the Mormons!” He started asking questions left and right and I started asking his questions. I got to know his life and I got to know him as a person, as a child of God. This man’s countenance was bright! He told us he loved talking with people, getting to know their story because each of us has one. 

Well, his story was after he graduated.  He didn't want to go to school. Instead, he wanted to work. He made enough to travel and that's what he did. One day, he decided to grab a pack, get some money and travel the world, see sites and meet people and serve if he had the chance. He called this adventure 2016 THE BEST YEAR OF MY LIFE!!!!!!! He got to meet sweet sites in Utah, saw the temple, went to ZIONS NATIONAL PARK!!!!!! The sites he saw were incredible.  It was awesome! 

This guy was living and being joyous, but he didn't have the abundance.  Imagine his life, his confidence, even though it is great for him now. Imagine if he had the gospel, if he had that light... wouldn't it be incredible!? I asked for his name and address, but, I never asked him if he would like to take the lessons and hear our message. Never fear. The response of this man was happy. He was living but the gospel would have blessed him even more. As a missionary or a disciple of Jesus Christ, you learn that important lesson. Talk with everyone. Be friendly to everyone. Love everyone like Christ has done and continues to do today.

I love you all and I thank you for supporting me in your prayers. They are truly answered! I love you all!!!

-Elder Corbridge

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