Tough Choices, Weak Constitutions

Dear friends and family,

I almost decided not to write an e-mail this week. It was truly a trying week with all that is happening out here, or rather, lack of.

Zone conference week... all the missionaries were anticipating this because we were going to have the Mission President from District 2 series come. However, my companion got sick so I stayed in the apartment with him...for 4 and a half days. 

I felt sorry for him and I tried my best to comfort, console, and play nurse for those 4 excruciatingly long days. In the meantime, I was mostly left alone to study and plan for our investigators, recent converts, and less-actives. Our heater is broken and although 50 degrees sounds like paradise to most of you, it is quite frigid and depressing when you're confined in a solitary home. Some days were so terribly quiet that you could hear the window panes crack from the frost forming on them. 

I read, pondered, and prayed for the majority of the time. Eventually one of the other missionaries did a mini-exchange with me to visit some of the people we were working with. That was a very tough night, suffice it to say... it would have been better if I stayed home with my sick companion. I woke up the following morning with the same illness as him. 

Further tribulations continued as the week moved on. I don't know why we are going through such trials and hardships at this time. I only know that faith prevails and God knows whats best for us. 

I've come to deeply appreciate and love the Prophet Joseph Smith through this troubling time. He went through so much. The persecutions he endured and the isolation from his family and friends. I could scarcely imagine what he must have felt when incarcerated in Liberty jail, nor as he sat in the small room in Carthage with his brother mere hours away from his eventual martyrdom. How firm in the faith was this man, how ever inspiring are the sacrifices. All for the purpose of bringing to pass the immortality and eternal life of Heavenly Father's children. The salvation of souls lay in the tilting point of saying either, "No more" or "Endure to the end." There is always opposition. Perhaps my companion and I are meant to swim in deep water in this particular part of our mission so that we may be tested and eventually, hopefully buoyed up by a loving Savior when we can no longer stay afloat. 

I hope and pray for a swift recovery and a week of miracles and blessings. If I am meant to go through more than I pray that Heavenly Father may consecrate mine afflictions and that I am changed for the better when all is said and done.

May God continually keep you, may you remember the love the Savior has for one such as you. For God so loved the world, and so loved you---that He gave His only begotten Son. I know that He loves you. If you want to be truly happy then live the gospel, not only know it, but live it wholeheartedly. I love you all.

Your eternal friend and fellow missionary,
Elder Jalla

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