Buna familia mea si prietenii mei!
Well, this past week has been eventful! We were able to go on a hike this past Monday called Șapte Scări which, translated, means Seven Ladders. And these weren't just any ladders...
The adrenaline junky inside of me was absolutely thrilled. This was one of the most amazing hikes I've ever been on! Although, fun fact, we actually ended up hiking the whole thing backwards because the guy we were with didn't want to pay the entrance fee (no worries, I went to the entrance and paid before we left) for the attraction. So, we hiked up the back side of the mountain (4 hours up) so that we could come down the ladders on the other side (another 3ish hours)! My legs were absolutely dying, but I can honestly say that it was some of the most fun I've had on my mission. It was a blast.
Well, unfortunately this isn't our whole district (we have another set of Elders), but here are one set of our Elders!
Meet my mission "son" (mission lingo) Elder Jacobson (over there in the Superman shirt) and my mission "husband" (more mission lingo) Elder Jensen (the one being forced to smile). These two Elders are some of the best and we always have such a blast together!
Hope On. Journey On.
I only chose this quote because it fit my hiking theme what with the rock background and the hope and the journey...
Just kidding! In all seriousness, I absolutely love this quote by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland. It is simple and direct, yet holds such a profound message for each of us. I have found that as human beings we sometimes find it difficult to have hope. I have seen that we embrace the subject openly in our religious discussions, but sometimes have trouble applying it when it comes to the crisis moment in which it is so desperately needed. When life gets hard and we cannot see the light at the end of the tunnel, we must have hope. We must keep the vision of our goals in sight so that we do not become enveloped in the darkness that so eagerly surrounds us. We must keep in mind that the journey is simply that: a journey. It is an adventure that will only be remembered fondly when we have overcome the hardships and surmounted the challenges that it brings with it to, ultimately, arrive at the summit. In this life, I strongly feel that the summit, climax, apex, peak of our existence or whatever you want to call the point which we are working towards is our personal, eternal, happiness. The journey towards it, however, is our life. It is beautiful. It will leave us scarred and sore, heartbroken and hangry (a mixture of hungry and angry for those of us who connect the two), and sometimes a mix of a little destitute, tired, unappreciated and quite frankly overwhelmed. Yet, I know that through all of this, that God wants us to experience joy. He wants us to be happy. He wants us to succeed. All He asks is that we hope on and journey on. If we can do this, then we will feel His love and His support. Always.
And no, of course it's not easy! Hikes that take you up a mountain backwards on unmarked paths solely so you can avoid paying 10 lei aren't easy! BUT THAT IS WHY THEY ARE SO FETCHING FUN. :)
Anyways, Sora Vann and I love you all!
Until next week!
PS - Our mission conference newsletter is attached if you want to see all of us with President Uchtdorf!