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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

March 20, 2011

People go into crisis mode really easy, huh?  So I guess there is a lot of hype about the radiation coming from Japan our way, and lots of people have started fleeing the Far East.  I hear that plane tickets out of Sakhalin are sold out through the end of the month at least, and that was several days ago, so probably even worse now.  They've started announcing the local radiation levels over loud speakers on the main streets of the city during the day to tell everyone that everything is completely normal, but I still have all kinds of people amazed that we haven't evacuated yet.  Brother Noble reminded us that if there were any kind of real threat to us here in Sakhalin, Exxon would have him out of here on a private jet by nightfall.  I mean, I don't watch the news and am not totally in the know about everything that is going on in the world, but from all that I've seen and heard there is absolutely no threat to my health, and it doesn't really seem like there will be anytime soon.  So for those of you who still find ways to worry about me or hear cool rumors about me growing extra arms and can just wait until I come home from my mission as Spider Man and swing from the skyscrapers of Blackfoot.  :D  No worries.  And that's all I have to say about that...

 We got invited to some Relief Society birthday conference this weekend.  It was cool to be at a Relief Society activity...but there ended up being a lot of talking, and I was supposed to "translate" for Brother and Sister Jones, but we decided to sit in the corner and just pick up bits and pieces of the history of the Relief Society on Sakhalin.  They understand Russian actually really well.  Brother Jones usually picks up a lot of what is going on, and Sister Jones teaches us words all the time.  She even corrected Elder Gmeiner a few weeks ago and it turned out that she was right.  I love our American couples. 

So we are still looking for an apartment, we've gotten close a few times...but are still looking.  I'll get stressed if I try to explain how things worked out, so I'll just leave it at that.  Good thing there are no plane tickets (no return tickets at least) available for our landlady to come from Moscow and sell our apartment.  :D 

 I have a few minutes left before my time to write is over, so I thought I'd say just a little bit about the Book of Mormon.  I know I talk about it a lot, but if you really understood just how important it is you would too.  The Lord put a whole lot of work into preparing for us an additional book of Scripture to help us accept and understand the teachings that were left to us from the Apostles and Prophets of the Bible.  The Book of Mormon is full of the teachings of Christ.  He has played more of a role in the workings of men than you even realize.  This time as I am reading the Book of Mormon I have been underlining all of the things that Christ did, all the verbs relating to the Lord.  He does a lot of covenanting, a lot of blessing, and a lot of remembering.  As we strive to become more like Jesus Christ we should also learn to bless others, to remember the lessons and the blessings we've been given, and strive to make and keep sacred covenants with the Lord.  That isn't really the thought I was going for sharing at the beginning, but it's something that I've thought about a lot lately.  As we live the Gospel of Jesus Christ we strive to make covenants.  The Lord teaches line upon line and precept upon precept.  Those who are striving to become like our Father in Heaven begin to learn from covenant to covenant.  We must first be baptized, then we can mature to become ready for the further blessings that the Lord waits to give us.  We build ourselves, one covenant at a time, until we can feel comfortable in the presence of our Almighty Creator.  Just an interesting thought I had lately. 

Well have a great week.  Thanks for all of your prayers.  You're in mine too.  Love you all,

Elder Fife

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