Monday, May 23, 2016
Dear Friends and Family,
Wow, it is so incredibly weird writing today and knowing that I am entering my last week here in the mission. Wow, the time has surely gone by incredibly fast and I´ve been so happy to enjoy every single minute of it!
It´s so interesting because I came here on my mission out of a sincere desire to serve my Father in Heaven and be able to help bring the gospel of Jesus Christ to some of His children. Yet, I don´t think that I could have ever imagined the experiences that I would be able to have and the personal opportunities that I´ve had to learn and grow while I´ve been here. The mission was hard, harder than I could have ever imagined. It was hard physically, emotionally, espirtually, and socially, yet I wouldn´t have changed a second of it for anything:) I am so eternally grateful for the opportunity that my Father in Heaven has given me to see the amazing changes that come from applying the principals of the atonement in ones life. It is truely the most amazing gift that God has given us, His Only Begotten Son who sufferied, died, and was reserrected so that each and every single one of us now has the chance to return to our Father in Heaven again to live with him and our families forever and ever. Christ´s atoneing sacrifce is what gives us the power to change, the power to be forgiven, the power of strength in our moments most difficult, understanding when we don´t understand, power to heal from our deepest wounds, and the power to be resurrected and live forever! All thanks to our Loving Father in Heaven and His faithful son Jesus Christ.
It´s been an amazing experience to deepen my conversion and that of others to our Father in Heaven. And, I have alot of mixed feelings as I finish up my mission. I´m both super excited to come home and see everyone, but I´m also sad to have to take off the name tag and stop being a full-time missionary…..although, I´m gladdend to know that this isn´t the end. One story that I was able to read lately is in the New Testament after everything that happened with Christ, the apostles weren´t really sure what to do and at the end of the book of John we see that several of the apostles went back to their old lives as fishermen. Then, while fishing, Christ appears to them and asks the question three times, Do you love me? and of course the response is yes. And so he said, feed my sheep….now I like to relate that back to my mission. The apostles had just passed through an incredible ministry alongside Jesus Christ and had learned many things, yet afterwards they just went back to their old lives and then Christ had to come and ask them what they thought they were doing:) He had shown them how to be his true disciples and now it was time to use that knowldege to bless his other children and ´feed his sheep´. And so too is our missionary service…. The greatest thing that I´ve learned while on the mission is that the mission isn´t the end, but the beginning. In the mission I´ve strengthend my testimony and learned many of the skills that hopefully will help me be a disciple of Christ for the rest of my life. That is the coventant that we make at baptisim and in the temple, not just to follow the commandments, but to help others do the same by continuing to share with and serve others.
So, thank you all for reading my letters over the last year and a half. And I want to extend one last invitation as a missionary to those back home for those that have experienced the blessings of the gospel in their lives to strive daily to share those blessings with others, and that I can promise you that if you do a new light and life will enter into your lives. And for those who haven´t had the chance to learn of this great gospel, I invite you to read the Book of Mormon and ask God with a sincere heart, and He will answer! I know that this church is true and that God loves and watches over his children and that no matter what we have done in the past, it is never to late to repent, change, and be embrassed by his love.
I love you all soooo much! Thanks for all of your support!