Monday, January 9, 2012

It Just Took a Little Encouragement...

Well thanks to everyone for writing me this week! I got emails from Scott, Lys, Tara, and Mom, after two weeks of just mom. Good work team.

So this week was pretty rough as far as numbers go, but I feel like we're making some good progress in our companionship. We had 1 of 3 confirmations happen, but I feel confident that the other 2 will happen this week. We're just doing really great here in Tequis (did I tell you that people shorten it or did you just know? If so, good work, mom), and I feel like I've really started to make some progress on becoming a missionary as opposed to just being here. I've started praying every single time I pray for more love of the work and the people, and it's really starting to show. Heavenly Father has just helped me so much. Also, it's been good that in my personal study, I finished Jesus the Christ (I think last week, I don't remember), and now I'm reading 1 chapter of the Book of Mormon every day followed by the New Testament (because of my newfound knowledge of the years 0-96 AD). It's been really great to see how much more I understand the New Testament, and everything just means so much more with that understanding. I'm making timelines of each of the gospels to compare them and have a better idea of the timeline of Jesus's ministry. Also, I'm doing a timeline of the Book of Mormon just for fun. I don't know if I told you, but I also did a timeline of the Old Testament when I read it. I'm maybe a little obsessed with timelines, but I think it's fun, and it helps me understand. Also, I know that the fall of Adam was between 4251-3975 BC, which is just fun to know. Essentially, things have been going well.

We played soccer as a district today (and last week) which is really fun. I'm still fairly decent, but I've lost a lot of ball-handling skills. Anyway, watch out Tara, because I'll be ready in 17.5 months. Also, Elder Shumway (in the district) played high school soccer and is really good, and he plays with an ankle brace. The moral is that you can still play well with an ankle brace, so don't worry about it.

Mom, I'm glad you're taking classes again. It just makes me happy that everyone is finding different ways to progress back home. What class are you taking from Bro. Bott? I'd imagine mission prep if Alyssa was talking about it. I hope you really enjoy it, though. I really learned so much in there, and I would maybe consider myself a gospel scholar after having taken that class and studied like I have been. Anyway, it'll be really good. Also, that's really fun that you invited Elder Miller over. I didn't quite understand why you invited those two girls over (especially when Elder Miller brought his girlfriend), but that's fun, as well. I'm glad you're still managing to fill the house. It'll be easier in 2 months when Brigham gets home. We just have the one branch here in Tequis, but the area is probably the biggest in the mission. We actually cover about half of the state of Querétaro, and part of Hidalgo (Tecozautla, where Nicolas is from). We mostly work in Tequis because it's easier and more effective, we have member support, etc., but the area in and of itself is enormous.

Concerning service, I've actually been trying to be better at that as well. I'm starting out small, but I feel it helps. I'm trying to smile more and be more affable (I'm using that right, aren't I?) when I'm talking with people. It's not something I'm accustumed to, but when I do it, I feel better, and I think the people do, too. It's great to see how small things can bring about bigger changes. I'm sure Tara's talk will go just great, especially after having a great experience with service. Things really are going a lot better here, and I'm so grateful for everyone's support. I've really felt strengthened by your prayers, and I know the Lord is blessing you for your service towards me.

I should be getting letters tomorrow, so if anyone wants to send a dear elder today, go on ahead.

I know that Heavenly Father loves us. He really does know us, and He knows what we need in every situation so that we can grow and progress and humans and with the divine potential that everyone of us has. He allows us to be tried, knowing we might fail, because He loves us and provided the way that we can overcome our challenges. Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer. Through His Atonement, we have the opportunity to change and improve as long as we are humble and willing to do so. No matter how much we fail, there is hope because of a loving Savior. How truly marvelous it is that we chose Heavenly Father's plan. Had Satan's plan been elected, we would have lost that opportunity. I know that this is Christ's church, and that we have His doctrine. I know that the Book of Mormon is true. That is really the foundation of my testimony, and without it, I would be nothing compared to the person I'm becoming. I'm so thankful for the opportunity we have to study the words of prophets that saw our day and our trials and gave us everything we need to overcome them. Through it, we can know that Christ still lives and still loves us, and will never be out of our reach when we need His help.

Elder Joseph Facer


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