This week has been kind of crazy so far and I think it's just going to get a lot more wild. Maybe I'll just try and start at the beginning and move forward though.
OK... sooo... I gave my first blessing for the sick this week. It was actually a really special experience. The lady I blessed was an investigator we've been teaching for a little while. We thought she was going out of town (outstation as they say here) though, so we hadn't met her for a couple of weeks. By the time she'd gotten home we'd found out that she'd actually spent the last eight days at the hospital trying to recover from an infected dog bite. I guess she was trying to referee a fight between her own dog and a neighbor's and ended up getting bit in the process. Anyway, by the time we met with her she was doing better, but still had some infection and was moving pretty slowly. I didn't even think to offer her a blessing until we were just about to leave when the idea came to me really suddenly, so I turned to her right after our closing prayer and explained what a blessing was and asked if she'd like one. She agreed really eagerly, so Elder Dables anointed and she asked me to do the blessing. It was my first time, so I was a little nervous, but as soon as I started that kind of started to fade away and I just focused on trying to give her the blessing Heavenly Father wanted to offer her, and when I did that, I just sort of felt led through the whole blessing. It was really cool, and very hard to describe, but I just felt led. I would have a feeling about something I should say, try and verbalize it and then just say it. If I started wrong or misspoke something, I could kind of tell something was off and would just go back and correct myself quickly. It was amazing, and reinforced my testimony of priesthood blessings so much. I'm so grateful to have finally had the chance to give one for the sick, and I know that they're real. Sister Esther felt something special also, so hopefully this helps her continue to progress and learn!
So, we have eight elders coming over to our little apartment of usually just two this weekend. A bunch of things all lined up, so it turns out the Assistants to the President, the Zone Leaders, and two mandarin elders from a small town a couple of hours away called Sitiawan are all visiting at the same time. Crazy! We're still trying to think of where we're going to put everyone to sleep and everything, but it should be super fun. I'll also most likely be finding out who my new companion is since Elder Hall will be leaving on Monday. Yes, I am kind of nervous about it, but I know that whoever comes the Lord will help me to make it work. I think I've got a good feeling about it, so everything should be alright! Crazy to go through so many companions so quickly though...
You asked how much Malay I'm speaking here. I guess I never really got to tell you, huh? Well, everyone here speaks Malay, but we're still almost always chatting and teaching in English, which is sometimes hard for me, but I think I'm learning a lot of teaching skills in English that are really going to bless me once I have to make the transition into Malay. I've actually developed a real, genuine love for the language, so it's a little hard not to be speaking and learning it as much as I'd like to, but I'm still working hard, and I think as long as I keep at it I'll be able to learn it ok even if I never serve in a major Malay speaking area (which is mostly East Malaysia). Can't really control how much people speak Malay around me, can I? So, I just work as hard as I can and count on everything working out in the end.
Anyway, I think that's about the news for the week! I love you all so much though, I'm working really hard to come back better than I ever was before. I think that's the beauty of the gospel. So many people work so hard to find out what to do to improve themselves and to be happier and to help others more and everything. So good to be finding out that all those answers are really in the gospel. That's it! Learn and love the gospel and you'll find yourself becoming your very best self. It's beautiful, and it works for everyone, in every culture, in any language, and from any background. Ah! I just have such a feeling of love for the gospel and for Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father when I think about how much I've been able to learn and accomplish because of this church and this gospel. It's a wonderful thing!
Ok! I love you all so much! I can't wait to hear from you again!
Talk to you later!
Elder Blissett (Kevin)