December 5, 2011 – Charentsavan, Week 13

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Hey this week I ate the infamous “khash”. This is a delicacy here in Armenia. The lords used to throw the pig and cow hooves out, then the peasants would gather them up at night and eat them in secret. You wash off the hoof and then you cook it for 4-6 hours. This softens the skin, joints and fat. When the lords found out that it wasn’t bad and so it became a delicacy.
You eat it with garlic and a flat bread called “Lavash”. Our khash, however, was even more of a treat because each bowl had about 4 pieces of the cow stomach. The hoof wasn’t bad, but the stomach tasted just like a stomach should(bile, grass, and feces). Pardon me, but it had to be said. It didn’t feel right putting stomach into my stomach. So that was my first and probably last experience with khash.
This week I learned a lot about how to work with the branch/members to make the work move forward at an incredible rate.
I went to serve with Elder Zebley in Davetashen (where I was serving 3 months ago) as our companions went to a training meeting. I learned so much from him. He taught me to make the most out of every opportunity. We could have talked about unimportant matters, but as soon as we had some time to sit down he asked me a question,” What is your most valuable experience?”. That led us to other subjects.  We talked about the life we had before coming to the earth. We were all spirits, we lived with God and we learned there. We knew that in order to truly fulfill God’s plan, we would need to learn with a physical body. We actually learn from the prophets that we had to pass a test to come to the earth. We learned and trained to come here and receive a body.
It was such an enlightening conversation. I learned many other things which need not be written. I learned that as we share experiences, especially spiritual experiences, with each other we understand a person much better. By sharing we gain a powerful and a spiritual bond, we become a friend. I feel that Elder Zebley is one of my greatest friends, despite only having served with him for 5 hours. We can be a friend to all. I know that our best example of a friend is the example that Jesus Christ gave. We can and should strengthen each other, whether or not we are having a bad day.Every oppurtunity to lift another is precious.
Elder Cook

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