Well, today’s a little bittersweet.. I sometimes have no desire to write these little group letters, but now that it’s my last one, I wish I still had a hundred more to write…
We saw lots of miracles, my favorite being the beautiful baptismal service for Tori. She got baptized! And what an adventure of a day! But all of it was very much worth it seeing her there still dripping wet, with a smile on her face, just moments after her baptism. Her mother-in-law gave the talk at her baptism and shared her sweet testimony of how it’s been five years that her and her family have been praying that Tori would accept the gospel in her life and become a member of the church and how grateful she was that it finally happened. And it made me think how grateful I am that the Lord allowed me to play a small part in that happening.
This coming weekend, our sista Chrissa is getting baptized and I’m so excited for her! It has been such a wonderful journey with her and her family. I still tease Chrissa about the first time we taught her and her family and how she’d said she would never get baptized.. because here she is, less than a week away from her baptism! It’s amazing how the Lord can work in our lives when we let him. And it’s also amazing to be able to see so quickly the ripple effect caused when one person decides to follow Christ. It first began with Serena, then her cousin Alex came along, and now her mother Chrissa is getting ready to take that step. And pretty soon her aunt Crystal will also be joining them! God is just so good. And getting to be a missionary, a called representative of Jesus Christ, is just so good.
I can’t describe in words what my mission means to me, and I can’t express adequately the love I now have for my Savior and for the people I’ve met here in Kansas. Neal A. Maxwell once said, “Moments are the molecules that make up eternity.” and I’m grateful that the Lord has allowed me to have each of these precious moments here on my mission. I know it’s not only a part of my eternity, but it’s also forever changed my eternity. I am changed because of my mission.
With this being my last group letter, I just want to share my appreciation for each of you. The prayers, packages, loving notes, and outpouring of support has meant the world to me. I’m especially grateful for the examples each of you are to me. Light radiates from each one of you and I’m grateful you’ve shared your light with me. This last week, I will not be counting the days, but will be doing everything I can to make the days count. I’m still on the Lords errand and there’s not a minute to be wasted.
I feel like there’s so much to say, yet I’ve said it all before so I’ll end with sharing something close to my heart, which is my testimony of our Savior, Jesus Christ. I know and can testify that God is our Father in Heaven and that He loves us infinitely and eternally. Jesus Christ is the Son of God and he has redeemed and enabled each of us through His Atonement. He has cleansed and refined me and made me into someone more than I could ever be on my own. And He continues to change me as I reach out and rely on Him. Christ has become my best friend as we’ve walked the streets of Kansas together. I know He is with each one of us, He sacrificed everything for me, you, him, her, them…. And what do you give to The One who gave you everything? You give Him your heart. You align your will with His because that’s all you have to give. And that’s what I’ve been striving to do my entire mission and will continue to strive to do the rest of my life. Because it’s only by aligning our wills with God’s that full happiness can be found.
I’m happy. I’ve never been happier in my entire life and I know it’s because God is helping me give everything to Him. On my mission, I’ve learned to trust Him. President Ezra Taft Benson, thirteenth prophet of the Church, taught: “Men and women who turn their lives over to God will discover that He can make a lot more out of their lives than they can. He will deepen their joys, expand their vision, quicken their minds, strengthen their muscles, lift their spirits, multiply their blessings, increase their opportunities, comfort their souls, raise up friends, and pour out peace. Whoever will lose his life in the service of God will find eternal life.”
I invite every one of you to ponder and pray about what changes you need to make to be aligned with Gods will and be ready and willing to act on the answers that come. What He asks of you may be difficult, but I can promise that this is the path to being happy right now and in eternity. Trust your Heavenly Father, He knows you and loves you more than any of us can comprehend and He will always lead you to the places you want to be. I’m grateful for my Savior, the opportunity to change and become, and for Gods plan of happiness.
Make it the best week,