Doctrine & Covenants 93:1

"Verily, thus saith the Lord: It shall come to pass that every soul who forsaketh his sins and cometh unto me, and calleth on my name, and obeyeth my voice, and keepeth my commandments, shall see my face and know that I am."

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Welcome Home!!!

Welcome Home Elder Hamner!!! WE LOVE YOU!!!

Apr. 25, 2011

Dearest Mom and family, What a beautiful week. The sun is out everyday! So different from what I am used to. Almost all of the snow is melted and now I am wearing a light jacket.
This past week was fun and full of faith building experiences. I pray that I can sufficiently describe each and you can feel the power of the Holy Ghost because some wonderful things are happening here.
First of all the mission is breaking records that have not been reached for about 25 years. Also the members are more on board then ever. We are now trying to train those who are so willing to help.
Second, remember when I shared with you about how our teaching pool did a flip-flop. From 5 progressing investigators, 3 with a baptismal date to almost no one progressing. Well the Lord has blessed us as we strived to keep our vision sharp for the elect. And this past week we are seeing more fruit of our labors. One experience: we were looking over our potential investigators (those who showed interest but have not started meeting yet) and started to get in contact. One name seemed to be over looked...J. So I called him and set up an appointment for the following day. Well that day I was on splits in another area but when I came back to hear the report of the day Elder Merkley told me that they set a baptismal date with him! So now A going for the 7th of May and J for the 21st of May. And on top of that the Lord has guided us to many good people.
Third, throughout my mission my mission president has told us to focus our studies on the needs of our investigators. Well I can personally say that as I have just forgotten my needs and just focused on studying for others the Lord has always blessed me ten-fold more than if I studied for my personal needs. That principle seems to be so simple but when you sacrifice that precious time in the service of others then miracles happen and you come closer to heaven.
And finally fourth, training is a wonderful experience. As I am working with Elder Merkley the Lord is teaching me how to become a better dad. And one of the main lessons I am learning is to listen. Because ''when we listen more carefully to others, we understand them better. (PMG ch.10 ''Listening'')'' So as I have listened more with my ears as well as my heart the Lord has helped guide me in counseling and teaching.
Thank you for your email. I love to hear from you. Please pray that A and J will keep their commitments and attend church regularly.
I love you. Please remember how much I do.
With all the love I can muster
Elder Hamner

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

May 17, 2011

Dear Mom and Family This past week the Lord has taught me some wonderful truths and performed some amazing miracles.
As my time with Elder Merkley comes to a close I am doing my best to teach the most basic and important lessons the Lord has taught me on my mission. And the number one lesson would be to give my heart to Him. So what does it mean to give my heart. Well since leaving West Point the Lord has asked to give Him everything and not hold anything back. For example, if I wanted to stay at West Point and ignore the prompting to come home then I would have not started on the road to ''giving my heart'' properly. I would have continued on in life holding back by not obeying Him. In other words the decision to leave West Point was the first critical step to giving the Lord everything and just trusting in Him in all things even if I personally wanted something really bad.

And ever since the Lord has helped me to just trust in Him evermore. As a result He has strengthened my faith in Him and transformed me. I see life more what it really is. My desires are more pure and I see how much I really need His power in my daily life.

These two years have been the most fulfilling two years. I am and will always be grateful for this wonderful opportunity. The Lord trains His future earthly husbands and fathers through two years of full-time service (wives and mothers in 1.5 years because they just get it faster).

And the second lesson is- it is all about the Spirit. Without it we can do nothing what the Lord needs us to do. Third lesson- focus on others and the Lord will provide the needed power to bless them as well as strengthen you.
Also yesterday we had a teach with C during which we taught about the Atonement of Jesus Christ and how it makes the Plan of Salvation possible. The Spirit was there as we simply taught and testified. The member who came along helped greatly by simply praying in the beginning and adding his testimony when needed/asked. And as we were teaching the Spirit helped guide our questions so that we could measure C's understanding until when it clicked in his mind that this all makes sense. Then I extended the baptismal invitation which he accepted. Oh how joyful that evening was! What a tender mercy to be a part of. These last two weeks have been full of tender mercies. And my love and respect for Heavenly Father continues to grow. I still have a couple of days to find and teach others. I want to live it up.
I love missionary work because it helps me love Him and my brothers and sisters even better. As an official representative of my Savior, He lives. I know it by what I feel and that has led me to lasting peace and happiness which I cannot get from any other source besides the Most High.
Please continue to pray for A, R, and C. They have baptismal dates and are progressing well. A's baptism was moved due to counseling with Lord and the bishop.
With Finnish love
Vanhin Hamner

Monday, May 16, 2011

May 16, 2011

I will send a bigger email in a couple of days.
Elder Hamner
PS we just set another baptismal date. name-C June 18th! I will tell later

Monday, May 9, 2011

May 9, 2011

Dear Mom and Family Wow, what a full week of miracles!
It seems each day is full of ups and downs. More intense than usual. And every time I kneel in prayer and then go to work the Lord raises me another level I could not have gotten to alone. That is truth.
Well, this week Elder Merkley and I have most of the week already planned because the Lord has blessed us with many good investigators. We currently have two with a baptismal date. 1. A for this saturday and 2. R for the 28th of May. Cool story about R. She is the daughter of I P. who we found and baptized in Oulu. The Lord placed R at the right place at the right time to meet missionaries. What a miracle.
Another miracle occurred this past Sunday- yes on Mother's Day the day when many miracles happen. Just because women are favored over men. I accept that and fine with it. But anyways about Sunday; so we were leaving a member's home after eating and decided to tract. We did so and talked with as many families as possible outside. (side note- I love families) Then time came to an end and we headed for home. No one showed any interest as we talked with others. Then we got on our train and talked with a couple of others. But towards the end of the train ride one man stood out. So I got up and talked with him. Come to find out this man is Muslim but when he saw a picture of Jesus Christ he just started telling me how much he wants to change and follow Him. He expressed his disappointment in his previous culture and thanked me profusely for talking with him. I was quite surprised and embarrassed. Not many people thank me when I talk with them but I am grateful the Lord placed us in the same path.
Tomorrow is zone conference and I will report about it next week.
Thank you for your email. I look forward to seeing you but I have another week and I dare not waste it. This time is too valuable.
Vanhin Hamner

Monday, May 2, 2011

May 2, 2011

Dear Mom and Family
Each week seems to go faster and faster. Fortunately Heavenly Father is helping me focus on one day at a time to make the most of it.
This past week was filled with tender mercies from the Lord. Of which consisting of finding, teaching, learning, and struggling.
First, I am grateful that the Lord allows us to struggle for some time before He will answer or give guidance. Because during that struggling we are developing greater character and ingraining the habits to rely on Him even more than if He just answered immediately.
Second, as a trainer the Lord is teaching me so much on parenting. It baffles me daily how powerful the mission is for the future.
Third, the Lord has helped the missionaries find the R, daughter of I (baptized in Oulu when I was there). And at first R was quite hostile but the Spirit has softened her heart so much that the day after she came to see a baptismal service she sent a text message saying,'' I want to be baptized on X day. would that be okay?'' Oh what a sweet text message. Of course we responded, '' no you need to wait until we invite you to be baptized.''.....not we gave her the affirmative:)
Remember I love you and thank you for helping me focus on this work even more. Please include that in your prayers on top of R (protect from evil, understand baptismal commitment), A (understand weekly church commitment), A (feel the power of the Book of Mormon) S (gain a testimony of the Book of Mormon and understand what that means)
Vanhin Hamner
PS please tell Aunt Kim I did get her package. and this'' Thank you for the mangos and especially for your words. Love beyond banana fan-fo-fana heaven and exaltation. Elder (AJ) Hamner

Monday, April 18, 2011

April 18, 2011

Dear Mom and lovely family!,
What a week! As I reflect upon this week I do not know where to begin. But the thought I would like to share is the power of serving others with all our heart, might, mind, and strength.
I remember President Brown teaching us about this a while ago where we come out to our missions ready to work with all our energy. We come wanting to talk to everyone: sun-up to sun-down. But he shared how if we do it with our all our heart and mind therein lies the true power source of the Lord. We could very easily do missionary work and do missionary things but if we start becoming Christ-like missionaries then you tune in with the Lord's frequency and miracles start to happen.
This simple lesson has changed my life. As I have strived (and still try to) to give my heart to Him by dedicating everything I have to His cause- I personally have felt and seen His miraculous power in my life and in the lives of my investigators.
I wish I could describe every experience like movie but that will have to wait until judgment day or when we get to watch THE BIG MOVIE in other words from start to finish (not Finnish)
One experience I would like to share: A, one of my investigators, who now has a baptismal date for May 7th. This past week we had a teach with him after an intense break from meeting due to the devil. Anyways in that meeting he brought some anti-literature which bothered him. As I looked over some of the general points I was praying for the Spirit to help me know what to say because I wanted to answer to the ''root'' of the problem not at the ''leaves''. So whenever I do not know how to answer I testified and then the Spirit helped me teach by using a passage from the Book of Mormon to help him understand how he needs to understand the basics before greater things. And during which the Spirit calmed his spirit and resolved any worries. At the end of the teach I asked him if he still needed the paper and he said, ''No.'' What a miracle! The Spirit does miraculous things in people's hearts and the Book of Mormon is one of the most powerful tools in that.
Thank you for your prayers. We still need them for A and also for S that he will feel the power of the Book of Mormon.
Elder Hamner

Helaman 5:12

And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall.