Theis quickly approaching! I remember last years . I can't believe it has been a year already.
I am so grateful for this country and for the freedoms we have. What a wonderful blessing from God. I am especially grateful for all those who have sacrificed their lives so that we can be free. Freedom is definitely not free. There are few more Christlike things that a person can do than give their lives so that others can enjoy freedoms that they themselves no longer will. As Jesus said- "Greater love hath no man than this."
In remembering the sacrifices of those who have enabled us to enjoy these freedoms, let's make sure to not forget the greatest sacrifice of all.
His sacrifice was also to make us free, to make us agents unto ourselves.
2 Nephisays this: "And the Messiah cometh in the fulness of time, that he may redeem the children of men from the fall. And because that they are redeemed from the fall they have become free forever, knowing good from evil; to act for themselves and not to be acted upon"
Jesus Christ makes us free. Let's use the great blessing of a country where we have the ability to worship freely to become more fully disciples of Jesus Christ!
This week also we had a cool experience where we received a prompting from the Spirit to go visit a former investigator. We visited the home but were unable to contact her. However, one of her relatives, named Steve, was outside, and we talked to him for about half an hour! We got his number and he told us he wanted to come to church! This is the Lord's work. He is guiding it!
I love you all very appropriately.
PS We got a new truck! #spoiled
Email to mom:
So echo and Mandi are definitely struggling, Mandi pretty much dropped us and Echo didn't answer the door when we came. Bummer. But we still have other people to teach, and we are constantly trying to improve our teaching pool! This week we had a cool miracle. In the morning, after we plan, we always say a prayer to confirm our plans. After doing this, something didn't feel quite right, so we went back in and switched a few activities around. When we did that, there was an open 15 minute block so we decided to put in that we would try to contact a former investigator at that time. As the day progressed, we talked to quite a few people with differing levels of interest. Towards the end of the day, we tried to contact that former investigator. We didn't meet her, but we did meet a guy named Steve who said that he was trying to find truth! He was very open and we talked to him for about 30 minutes. He said he would like to come to church. It was a very cool experience to realize that during our planning session, the Lord was guiding us even when we didn't know it!
So that was super duper cool. We went on a lot of exchanges this week. I got to spend time with some of my best friends in the mission though, so that was cool. I went on an exchange with a Elder Reiswig, Elder Tippetts, Elder Littlewood, and Elder Zortman.
I learned a lot in all of these exchanges, and we saw cool miracles. Mostly we are just seeing some cool things happen as we keep working with ward members to help them be better missionaries. One other cool story. We met with the Torres family this week and taught them from 3 Nephi 18 about family prayer and church attendance! They are a less active family who hasn't been to church in a while. We brought an awesome member with us, Brother Cooper, who helped teach and let them know that he was a friend they could rely on! This Sunday, for the first time in a long time, they came to church! It was wonderful! It was so awesome to see them there. Sometimes people just need to feel loved.
In a lesson this week with a returning less active family, I asked the question "Why would Jesus Christ take the time to set up a church when he was on the earth?" For some of us, the answer is obvious, but when we dig deeper and ponder, I think we can find some pretty profound answers. In that lesson, we taught the principle that the church is there to help us become converted to the gospel, but there are so many other reasons! Jesus Christ established a church because He knew we would have days, weeks, and even years with never ending struggles. He knew we would need a way to access His power directly, and so He instituted the sacrament. He also knew that some weeks, we would need to hear the testimonies of others. Other times, we would need to hear a scheduled lesson or program that perfectly meets our needs! Either way, Jesus Christ designed this church to meet our deepest spiritual needs, and I find that super comforting and amazing. Everything He does is out of love for us!