It began with a delightful package from Marshall McArthur and his family for the office missionaries. What a surprise! It was filled with delicious Wyoming delights. Thank you so much for your kindness! We LOVED it!
On Friday night, we had the opportunity of having Elder Holland, an apostle of the Lord, address the women of the Atlanta area. He had invited the women to send questions in advance. It was clear that those questions weighed heavily on his mind. He spoke of how he had prayed about us and we were on his mind. He talked about the purpose of trials, that we need them in order to be prepared to walk in God's way. If we are to be disciples, we need to have walked where he has walked.
On Saturday morning, the missionaries were allowed to have an early Christmas present. We often talk of the magic of Christmas. Usually it is associated with Santa Claus and the sense of magic that children feel about the surprises on Christmas morning. For many people, as they grow older, the magic of Christmas, the sense of wonder, is gone. It was so amazingly sweet then to watch our young missionaries as that sense of wonder was intensified this week. When these young missionaries have the opportunity to see an apostle of the Lord, to shake his hand and hear his words in person, they are tremendously happy! Little children at Christmas are no more excited than these missionaries were.
His message to us was strong. Do not think that the mission is the high point in your life. The mission is the pattern for the rest of your life. Elder Holland talked about how we must have firm testimonies and not be afraid because we have been given authority to teach in His name.
Lest you think our spiritual feast ended there, it did not. Then, came Stake Conference.