Monday, June 25, 2012

Curveballs, Crutches, and Courage

I’m not on crutches.  Hold on let me explain an absolutely crazy week, that yet at the end feels like we know about as much as we did at the beginning.

This week is the Mongolian national election. What are they electing? Everyone in their entire parliament.  This pretty much means that everyone but the president will be switched.  Last time the election like this went down 5 people died and hundreds were injured.  Hundreds were injured as an angry party burned a building.  This results in us needing to keep a low profile and possibly go home a little bit early at night. Other than that we'll receive more information as the week progresses.

Next transfers are coming up this week.  The saddest part being that Elders Jolley, Wilson and Huff head home next Tuesday. However, at this point the transfer call has not gone out due to the fact the Elders coming from America have been delayed a bit.  But they should still be coming.  It will make it a pretty big transfer.  Apparently they were going to send a lot of Americans to the countryside, but we faced some more issues and that’s resulted in the transfer calls also not being here yet.  

Which brings me to my visa which goes in for renewal this weekend.  Hopefully we hear good news before the first of the month.  It’s all really in the hand s of my sponsor at this point.  Just praying the hardest I can.

To the crutches .  .  .
In the most crushing news of the week, Elder Naef from my MTC group will be headed home this Saturday due to a malignant tumor in his ankle.  He injured his ankle in the MTC and has since experienced pain. For a while they thought it just wasn’t healing but after more tests and pictures they've come to this conclusion. I know that the President has faced many sleepless nights working out the solutions, but it still hurts like someone is taking a piece of your mission from you. Especially because of how close our group has become.  We all serve in the city, and there just aren’t that many Americans. He'll go home and it could be anywhere from 3 to 6 months, and of course there is the huge probability that he never comes back.  But amidst the gloom, the happiest most positive person of all is Elder Naef himself. I have never seen anyone face any problem with more fortitude or courage. His attitude is uplifting for everyone around him. I truly believe there is no one in the mission who could have faced such a significant blow. What an amazing Elder!

This brings me to the spiritual part of my letter and I pose this question .  .  .
How could anyone possibly face any hardship in life without a belief in Deity? 
It just doesn’t seem to be possible.  In the face of hardship there would be no reason to go on.  If you faced a trial there would be nothing keeping you from giving up and stopping the fight.  
I found this quote by CS Lewis in a May 2009 ensign this week:

What Satan put into the heads of our remote ancestors was the idea that they could ‘be like gods’—could set up on their own as if they had created themselves—be their own masters—invent some sort of happiness for themselves outside God, apart from God. And out of that hopeless attempt has come … the long terrible story of man trying to find something other than God which will make him happy.”

If there is one thing that I have learned on my mission so far it is that there is no happiness, no true and lasting happiness outside of God. Some may suppose, and say that many in this world are very happy with the lives they lead oblivious to their Creator. But in the end all this will crumble and their money just paper and their gold just stone. May we continually lay up our stores in heaven where nothing can corrupt.

I love you all!
Elder Neuberger

P-day in the countryside and the last one with Elder Jolley

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