Hey Brunswick County!

Is your garden getting enough rain? We've got some extra moisture that you are free to come get if you need it. Still, except for the cold start, it's been a near perfect gardening year in Brunswick County. Almost everyone I talk to tells of nice plants with blooms and buds and growth and green. We are all dreaming of a peaceful summer, eating fresh vegetables and flossing.

Speaking of flossing, we had a great weekend last week.

One of our sons, Eric, who graduated from Brunswick Senior High 3 years ago, has been in Japan for the past 2 years, serving as a Church missionary. He had taken two Japanese classes at the high school and the first two months of his mission service was in a 24/7 intense Japanese language program. He could barely carry on a conversation when he got to Japan but he came home fluent in Japanese. Fluent, that is, if you are talking about the Savior, Jesus Christ, or His gospel, or His commandments or baptism or the Holy Ghost or the scriptures, or prophets or heaven or repentance or the atonement of Christ.

Because we had not seen him for two years and had only spoken with him on the phone 4 times in that whole time, we were all excited to have him home. Last Sunday, during our services, he gave a report on his experiences with teaching the Gospel of Jesus Christ to believers of Buddhism and Shintoism. Eric talked about the "walls" that come up before us in life that try to keep us from doing what is right. He taught us that sometimes the Lord guides us though the walls like he did Nephi through the heavily guarded walls of Jerusalem, and sometimes the Lord helps us get over the 'walls' of life like he did Samuel the Lamanite on the walls of Zarahemla. But, he said, mostly the Lord teaches us to deal with those 'walls' by doing what Joshua and the Israelites did when faced with the walls of Jericho, He asks us to keep moving, walking, enduring until the Lord, in His due time, knocks down the walls for us.

Eric closed his remarks by bearing his testimony of the Savior in Japanese. There were only two people in the congregation who understood even a part of what he was saying (Both my younger brother, John, and I served missions in Japan 40 years ago) but the Holy Spirit bore witness that Eric had become a man of God while giving full time service to the Kingdom of God.

I wish that every 18 or 19 year old young man in Brunswick County could serve a two year mission for the Lord.

To read the rest of the article, pick up the June 19 edition of the Brunswick Times-Gazette.