"Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you..." (Matthew 28:19-20)

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

An OLD Bible and Gummi Bears!

Summertime in Germany!, Es ist schön!

Liebe Familie und Freunde:

What would you do with 2,000 Gummy Bears? .....well, we put them into two huge bowls, and had each missionary companionship take out 168 of them- one gummy bear for each hour in the week! Mini Zone Konferenz ist immer eine tolle ERlebniss, und immer voller Spaß! We took out 56 Gummy Bears from the big bowl, the amount of time we spend sleeping a week, 7 Gummy Bears out for personal study each day, and so on, until we were left with the time we have each week to find those prepared for the gospel, to teach with members and friends of the church, and to serve. It was shocking to see how little time there is in our week to do what is most important- some missionary companionships were down to 40 hours a week... and we thought two years was all the time in the world! It was a great reality check to us all, that we have to use our time effectiver. We have to do the first things first, and focus on our purpose. If what I am doing isn't helping me fulfil my goals or reach my purpose, then it will need to be done later. That is something we have been learning a lot recently- and it is really cool to experience the change that comes as we put the Lord first, and do His work.

Summer was here this week! Three full days of sun and heat! Today was back to rain. Bizzare. But we found a huge patch of Black berries while wating for a bus, so we filled a container with tons of berries- it reminded me of our raspberry patch growing up, and the dew berries in Texas. We went to an antique Book store today- I held a Bible that was printed in 1589!!!! It was neat to hold this book and feel the pages. There are so many wonderful people who kept the word of God alive, and being taught and spread. Thanks be to them, for keeping the basic values and truths of Christian living alive during the time of spiritual darkness, without Priesthood on the earth. WIthout that, there wouldn't have been any foundation or backdrop for the Restoration. It all works together perfectly. And this Bible from 1589 was a neat reminder of that.

We have had some neat expereinces this last week- I am more convinced than ever, that being called to serve a mission quite literally means just that.- Called to Serve, with the emphasis on "Serve"! We went over to the Strüning's house to help him paint some wood for his garage. His wife is from the Ukraine and not a member. She hasn't been to welcoming, but would always give us some bread or cake. This time we came in and she made us some great butter bread and cake, and then sat down with us for the spiritual thought. We talked about faith, and how we must work to see the fruits of our faith. She was really touched. She has always believed that we must do things, not just say we believe them. We invited them to the Ward Lunch after church on Sunday- it was more directed at him, but she said "Oh, Do I need to make something for that?!" We smiled and said if she would like. The funny thing is, she came to Sacrament meeting, but didn't stay for the Gemeinde Essen afterwards- I guess that's a fair trade-up!

I have really felt the influence of the Lord recently- not so much in big huge ways or parting of seas kind of things... just the little experiences to let me know He is still there, always by me. I was asked to play the organ on Sunday, and selected come songs that I thought would be good to sing, that everyone would know. There really wasn't a pattern or theme to the songs, I just liked them :-) Then, during the meeting, every song was matched up to a talk that was given, or a topic discussed. That wasn't because of my great fortune-teller abiliteis to guess the topics and select the songs- I didn't even feel guided by the Spirit when picking them out! But it was enough for me to recognise that the Lord is in control- He can let His spirit flow, and will provide an environment for everyone to feel of His love. I am grateful for that experience. My influence may not by to free the Israelites from Egypt or leading the saints accross the plains or opening the countries of the world for missionary work- But I feel confident, that the Lord can use me for His purposes and in His ways. And if His ways are for me to pick a  few songs for a sacrament meeting and use the talents He has given me that will help bring the spirit and touch someone's heart and bring them closer to Christ, than I am honored to do so! I am so grateful for every experience on my mission. My mission isn't a flash or blur of a movie screen-memory. Rather, it is a bunch of moments, gathered together to touch my heart and remind me that I am a son of God, that He knows exactly who I am and who I should be. And these moments are those that help me become that. I know that He lives. I know that His power is enough for us to change and to put off the natural man, no matter how long and hard, no matter how small and slow our progress may seem. It is true, this Gospel is true and simple, and I love it. And that's why I love you all- because this Gospel is a gospel of Love, the way to live and serve and help and bring others closer to Christ, and back to our Father. We're all in this together, as they say- it is so true. There is power in unity, strength in working together. Let's do it! There isn't anything holding us back from doing anything we want to achieve or feel to do- there really isn't anything stopping us, but us not taking that first step. I really have learned that recently too. We truly are agents, and can act for ourselves. I could keep going on on all I have learned about that, but we'll save that for next time! This work is His, the work is true!

Alles Gute!

Elder Nathan D. Garlick
German Frankfurt Mission
"Shall we not go on in so great a cause?" D&C 128:22

Sunday, July 22, 2012

July 2012

4th of July Grill!

Einfach schön!

July 16, 2012

Liebe Familie und Freunde:

What a week! It was full of strategie and planning and organising, and great spiritual experiences! We got transfer calls on Saturday... I am staying here with Elder Walker! But, sadly, the Garlick clove is getting spread out... Sister Garlick is going down to Heidelberg. She will do so great there! And that is where our name stemms back to- so she is going to the homeland! I have really loved my time so far in Dortmund, and especially for being with or seeing SIster Garlick nearly every day! I love our familiy- there is such a strength from a good family. 

I have been learning a lot about planning and setting priorities. The mission has set a standard of excellence, and Elder Walker and I really want to reach this standard- and it's been a wild ride! We also have been figuring out how best to help the Zone. We are getting a huge turnover in the Zone this coming cycle, 4 new missionaries and 4 other transfers in. It is always fun that each cycle has a different feel to it, because of the new people in the Zone. We are real excited- there have been some great miracles in the Zone with people coming to church and wanting to learn more, members feeling the spirit of missionary work and inviting their neighbours to come to an activity, and people discovering just how rare a possession the Book of Mormon really is. Kathir is making so much progress! He came to church on Sunday and we went to a member's house after church for dinner and a lesson. He expressed how he can't be baptised right now because he doesn't feel like he would be a good Mormon right now. He has such a good heart- he is always helping and serving at FHE and institute and is more active than a lot of members! He loves to learn, and look forward to helping him understand and expereince more of the gospel. 

I sure love being a missionary- there is nothing else like it in the world.. and it is pretty crazy, if you really think about it... 20 year olds being send to foreign countries all over the world, to live with another 20 year old, neither of whom have learned the language very long nor been to that country before, some coming right out of high school, to cook and clean and use public transport or bikes or walk all over huge cities as well as small country villages, to be responsible for the teaching of the Gospel of Jesus Christ as revealed from the beginning to Adam, by inviting people to make sacred covenants with their Heavenly Father, all helping them to progress along His plan of salvation for their happiness now and eternal joy in the world to come, all to help us reach our potential to enjoy all the blessings of God. What a crazy idea! But it's true- it is the work of the Lord, going forth like Daniel saw in King Nebukadnezar's dream... a small rock cut out of the mountain without hands, rolling forth to fill the whole earth. What a vision! What a work! I have noticed that the way the world does a lot of things are complex and difficult and covered in ruffles and lace and pearls... but the way the Lord does things is much simpler. He takes some shoes that have been worn through, holes in the socks, ties that have had food spilled on them, and a speaker with a funny accent and limited vocabulary and leads them to  those children of our Heavenly Father who are searching for the truth. He leads His servants to be His hands is serving and helping and loving- one heart at a time, one smile at a time. The world wants everything now- huge, world changes. The Lord works one by one. How excellent and rare that is- but it's the work of the Lord! I know it's true.

Ich stimme ganz und gar zu: Die Kirche Jesu Christi der Heiligen der Letzten Tage ist die einzige wahre und lebendige Kirche in der ganzen Welt. Die Himmel ist nicht zugeschlossen, das Wort Gottes hört niemals auf, Engel sind zur Erde wiedergekommen. Das Evangelium hilft mir mich zu ändern, und meine Potenzial erreichen zu können. Das ist die Wahrheit!

Ich hab' euch Lieb!
Description: https://mail.google.com/mail/images/cleardot.gif
Elder Nathan D. Garlick
German Frankfurt Mission
"Shall we not go on in so great a cause?" D&C 128:22

High on the Mountain Top

July 9, 2012

Liebe Familie und Freunde:
What a great week! On Tuesday and Wednesday, we were down in Frankfurt for Mission Leadership Counsil. President took us up to a mountain to learn about consecration and a testimony meeting. What a great experience! The was a great feeling to be there with 15 other missionaries, singing "High on a mountain top, a banner is unfurled. Ye nations now look out it waves to all the world." ...but in German :-) My dedication to the work was really renewed. We had some time to go of by ourselves and pray and think. I went to the middle of this huge field. I was kneeling down, really trying to listen to what the Lord wanted to tell me. I looked over and this field was the kind of plants that look like wheat, and a light breeze was blowing them all in unision. I sat there and thought, and the word came to mind, "Nun siehe, ein wunderbares Werk ist in Begriff, unter den Menschenkinder hervorzukommen...denn siehe, das Feld ist schon weiß zur Ernte bereit, und siehe, wer seine Sichel mit aller Macht einschlägt, der legt einen Vorrat an..." Doctrine and Covenants 4. The spirit was strong, and I walked away with some specific things I am changing and working on in order to become the missionary the Lord needs me to be. There isn't enough time to stay the same.

Then we came back to President's house and had a great 4th of July grill! One of the Assistants is a very patriotic American, so all the Americans came together and sang the star spangled banner to President, SIster Schwartz, the two Aussies and the three Englanders :-) It was good fun.

The neatest thing about this week, though, was my deepening understanding of the importance of the Book of Mormon. I was in Hagen on a split with Elder Moore, and had two appointments where we talked about the gospel of Jesus Christ, as taught from the Book of Mormon. Then on Sunday, we taught about the Fall of Adam and Eve from 2 Nephi 2. The Book of Mormon is the simplest, purest explanation of the gospel of Jesus Christ. The Atonement, the Fall, the Purpose of Life, all is so simply explained in the Book of Mormon. How rare a posession! For some, it is just a book. For some, it is a cool story, or an exciting adventure. For me, it is the word of God; the truth preserved and kept by God to come forth in our days, for our time. It isn't anything new or revolutionary...it is simple the Gospel of Jesus Christ, undefiled and unchanged by the ideas and interpretations of man. And that is cool.

This cycle ends this Saturday, we find out what is happening with moving cities. This coming 6 weeks was Elder Walker's last 6, but he is extending one more until october! I hope we can both stay here in Dortmund. There is so many miracles happening- Kathir wants to be baptised, Fabian is so excited about coming to Church, whether in Dortmund or Paderborn, it doesn't matter to him, the zone is excited and ready to reach the standard of excellence for the mission. There is a feeling of "big things coming" up here in Dortmund, and in the whole mission. The work of the Lord truly is going forward. It is just like Daniel saw in the Old Testament.. a stone cut out the mountain rolling forth, until it fills the whole earth. Everyone will hear this message, everyone will have the opportunity to accept it and make and keep sacred covenants. What a work! What a responsibility we have to keep it rolling! Let's keep on!
Alle meine Liebe!


Monday, July 2, 2012

Recording the mission song...

Elder Garlick and Sister Garlick!

Hot "death" Sauce and the grill

Hot Sauce, Hot Days, The Work is going on!

Leibe Familie und Freunde:

Wow- what a week! SO much has happened.. sorry for not sending a real email last week! But all is going well- my stomach is still churnning from last night.. we went to the Petzold's for  grill and they had some hot sauce there... ya, what's the big deal, right? Well, this hot sauce is called "Mega Death Sauce, with liquid rage"..... Elder Walker took a tiny bit and tried it. He said it was super spicy and burned his whole mouth. I din't think it could be that bad.. so he challenged me... I put a big clump on a piece of bread and ate it... holy smokes! That was the spiciest thing I have ever eaten! It started as a warm burn to the mouth, then it got worse, then the sweat came, then my face turned red, then the tears came.... chek out the pictures :-) It was so funny! We all had a good laugh, and I learned that when something says "Mega Death Sauce" on it, or when my companion warns me not to eat it, to probably not to eat it.

The Petzolds are doing so great! She was called as the activity planner for Relief society, and Benjamin will receive the Aaronic Priesthood next week. Their family is so great! It really is neat to see the conversion from the start to where it is now- fully committed ready and willing to help.

Fabian is from Afrika and loves coming to church! He travels 1 and a half hours to get here, and we talked last week about baptism. He says "I want to do the thing with the water!" Come to find out that the city he lives in is in Paderborn's area. There aren't missionaries there right now, so the Elders from Unna will be working with him in the coming weeks. Fabian doesn't really mind which ward he is in, and with which missionaries. He feels the Book of Mormon is true and the church is true- and that's enough.

We are heading down to Frankfurt this week. We will be there for the 4th of July. President has planned a Berg Predig (SErmon on the Mount) where we will go to a mountain/castle and learn from him. Then we will have an old classic 4th of July grill :-) I love America. I love Germany. I love the spirit of the Lord that oversteps any national or political boundaries. The Spirit of God is the Spirit of LIverty and Freedom. WE can choose our personal freedom and liberty. I am so grateful for a land that still supports the idea of choosing for ourselves. I hope it may always stay so.

I have been studying a bit lately about our Potential. Who we are, and who we are to become. I a so grateful for the Book of Mormon and Doctrine and Covenants and the Pearl of Great Price, in addition to the Bible. With all these standard works, we really know who we are and what our future has in store for the righteous. One of my favorites: Psalms 82:6, "Ye are gods, and all of you are children of the most High." And when Christ taught the Nephites in the Book of Mormon to "be ye therefore perfect", He wasn't taunting or teasing us... He was giving us an actual glimpse into what we can become- after receiving knowledge and eperience here a little there a little, line upon line. I am so grateful to remember the covenants I have made by baptism, the Priesthood and the temple. These covenants really have openend my eyes to who I am and the little things I need to consistently do in order to reach my potential.

I am so grateful to be here. Recently, I have felt stirred to recommit myself to give all I have to build the kingdom of God on the Earth. That's one of the reasons we are here, as Brgham Young taught. Having excperiences like the Petzold story, learning so much from leaders and companions, getting punched in the face, and feeling the spirit guide and direct what we should say and do, really is motivation to want me to do this the rest of my life! I know it is true. This Church is the Lord's. I am behind it 100%. I know Joseph was a prophet and we are led by a prophet today. That is so important. The heavens aren't closed, His words never cease.

Enjoy life! And don't eat anything with "liquid rage" inside of it :-)

Ich hab' euch viel lieb!

Elder Garlick