Monday, May 26, 2014

Not Quite Christmas

This week on Sunday I taught the lesson for Sunday School and that was stressful, but not too bad because there aren't a lot of members that show up anyway. I don't if you guys are on the same schedule that we are, but I taught about Ruth and Hanna and Naomi, and it was really great to think about how the qualities that made them great women thousands of years ago are the same qualities that are of value today.

Kikka is doing well and I am really excited for her. The only problem is that she is in France right now and will be for the next 3 weeks. But after she is back we plan to meet pretty regularly. After converts are baptized, we teach them all of the lessons again, and we just continue to meet with them to make sure everything is good.

I've got to admit, this week was a little bit slower than normal, but that is okay, because every day can't be Christmas, right? And just because we aren't always opening presents doesn't mean we can't enjoy the toys we already have. That was basically my attitude toward this week, and I was alright with it, because up to this point, my mission has been awesome. I don't pretend that I have loved every second of the long contacting sessions or the people that are less than kind on the street, but I can honestly say that the last 11 months have been the best months of my life. I have learned the most, grown the most, and I have definitely had the most opportunities to just sit down and laugh at myself because I didn't have anything else to do. For all of you that haven't served a mission- serve a mission. It will be the best thing you ever do.

Having said that, I refer back to my previous statement and take the liberty to emphasize the fact that sometimes, it's hard. And sometimes we all have moments when we hit the point where we really just realize that without God, we are nothing. I had one of those this week. I know that without Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and the atonement in my life, I wouldn't be where I am right now, let alone be the kind of missionary that could have any kind of success. I was feeling pretty low for a while there, but I was inspired by Nephi in 2 Nephi chapter 4 and wrote my feelings in my journal:

The Lord in His infinite mercy has saved me from myself. My heart is overflowing with gratitude, for the Lord has heard my plea and answered my prayers. He has stooped down to pick up the wretch that I am and has put me on my feet. He has freed me from the chains that have bound me for so long- the chains with which the devil would drag me laughing down to hell. I, who have evaded the judgements of God and run from His righteousness. I, who have hidden my head from the gentle promptings of His Holy Spirit. Though I attempted to make myself equal with that Eternal Being in choosing the consequences of my sins, yet has He plucked my soul from my misery and encircled me with His infinite love. He has protected me from the jeers of the world, that great and spacious building, and has set me free to fly. I will soar through the Heavens, proclaiming the name of my Lord and God forever and ever. Come, O house of Israel, come and feel the mercy of of your Lord. Come, bear witness of His justice and see the marks of His love in His hands and His feet. I will praise His name forever, and I will fly for Him. I will fly for HIm until He calls me home- back into the arms of His love.

Yes, it's true that we all have moments of weakness; moments when we feel as though we can never be good enough. And in all honesty, we never will be. It is that simple. Without the atonement of Christ in our lives, none of us could ever be good enough to make it back to our Father in Heaven. But that is quite alright, because Jesus Christ has taken everything. Every single sin and weakness and burden and care. He took it all out of His love for us so that we in our moment of weakness can cry out through the darkness and receive the help that we need. The strength that we crave. Through the grace of Jesus Christ we CAN be enough. And that is a wonderful message. Go share it with everyone because there is nothing that will help the problems of the world today more than a little more faith in Jesus Christ. I promise.

I love you all and have a wonderful week!

haha sorry for the selfie, but I cut my own hair today! I'm slightly proud that I'm not bald at the end of it :)

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