Well hello my family and my friends!
I'm going to take the blame for there not being hardly mail in my inbox this week, because I told you transfers were this week, and as we all know, that means you all get an extra day before you write an email. However, I got a little surprise this week. during weekly planning on Friday, the AP's called elder Wulf and told him he was being shipped up north to Cairns, which is the furthest north you can go. then 10 minutes later they called back again, this time calling for me. they told me that I was going to a little place called Emerald. and when i say LITTLE, by golly that's what I mean. mind you, the area itself is massive, but we only do most of out work in the town, which is about as big as old town Sherwood, maybe a little bigger. so they told me that on Friday, and I had that night to pack and visit people so I could leave the next day. so I got on a train the next day, and 15.5 hours later, I arrived at 4:30 am in emerald- its a mining town- they mine coal and sapphires. its interesting. I got picked up by the branch mission leader, and taken to the missionary flat. I walked in, set my stuff down, talked to the elders there for like 5 minutes, then crashed out on their couch, and then I got up at 6:30 for a normal day. needless to say, I was exhausted. but we ended up watching conference at church... the whole northern zone gets the DVD's later than the rest of Brisbane. so we went to the first session, and then put the elder i am replacing on a bus back down, so he can be at transfer meeting tomorrow. so now my new companion is elder Mahoney, he's been out for 6 months. so this transfer should be good, and i'm pretty sure I'll be here for at least 4 months, cause that's how they generally do it when you go up north. so ya. but besides that, the rest of the week was pretty quiet. I started that study that president richards gave me about the conditionality of God's love, and learned heaps. I filled almost 2 pages of references only to mercy, and of those 2 pages, 6 references had no conditions in them. every other reference to mercy, especially in the Book of Mormon, had definite conditions attached to them. it was pretty intense. but dad, you're right, God's actual love isn't conditional at all, if you think about it in terms of does he love me, or doesn't he, but seeing Him manifest His love, is always conditional. that's just how it is. when we obey, and do what we're supposed to do, then we see the outpouring of his love. it's kinda a hard concept to wrap my head around fully, but I'm getting there. I have to think a bit differently than I have for most of my life, but it's proving to be very rewarding. well, that's the week. and I'm out of time, so I better finish up. I love you all so much!
Dad, hope your first Sunday as Bishop went well. let me know. love you.
Elder Tayler Christensen