Monday, March 5, 2012

A Wrestle Before the Lord

Picture 1:the book burning (see last week's letter)

Well this week was typical as of late. We found a few pretty good people, and nobody came to church. It's a little frustrating, but I'm working past it. We did have really good Sunday meetings, though. We sang "I Believe in Christ" (a personal favorite), "I Stand all Amazed" (it took about 10 seconds to think of the title in English), and "I Know that my Redeemer Lives" and had testimonies. I decided to be brave and bear my testimony in church for the first time in several years. It was nice that when I got up and started testifying, I could feel how much my testimony has grown. It's also nice to share my testimony in a general way as opposed to "I know that the Lord will answer your prayers if you read the Book of Mormon and pray about it". That's the majority of the testifying we do, because the investigators need that. Anyway, it all made for a very nice Sacrament meeting.

Well lately, like I said, I've been learning how to really pray. Rarely do I ever offer a personal prayer less than 15-20 minutes because I feel like anything less just isn't that great of a prayer and I'm missing a lot of things. It's been nice to be strengthening my relationship with my Heavenly Father in that way. I even passed an entire personal study (1 hour 20 minutes because I like to get a head start) just praying. I never ever thought I'd be able to do that, but now it's easy. Don't get me wrong, this isn't to brag, I'm just sharing my progress, and that's been a big part of it this week. Speaking of personal study, I just happened to read Enos that same day that I did the really long one, so it was cool to relate that to me. I'm now in Omni, and the one a day is still going strong. In the Old Testament, I'm now in 1 Kings. Solomon is just showing everyone how wise the Lord made him while offering to cut babies in half. Not really, but he really did do that. Anyway, things are going well there, as well. Also, in the nights, I've started reading the missionary library, so I read "Our Search for Happiness" (excellent) and I'm in the middle of "Our Legacy" (more historical, but still excellent).

Today we played soccer as a zone, and that meant we had letters. I got one from Emily, Betsy, and Alyssa, and thanks to you all for the letters. Also, I'm getting pretty darn good at soccer. I'm sure Canyon will follow suite now that he's starting itty bitty classes. That just sounds strange for some reason. Anyway, that'll be fun for him, and that's great that Savanna's starting dance. I want to start my kids really young so they can be professionals before their missions. Not necessarily in dance, but in whatever it may be. That's too bad about what happened to Bro. Bott. I would probably say the same thing in the situation (based on hardcore scriptural evidence), but I'd rather just avoid that situation. That's strange that the reporter got through to him, though. Lys, thanks for all the Andrew pics. He's sure growing up, isn't he? It's really no big deal that he isn't talking yet. If he gets to 2 years without much progress, then you can worry. The good thing is that he understands and is communicating in his own way, even if that isn't "socially acceptable". That's all just part of his developing personality.

Well I hope you all know that I'm trying really hard. Success has been hard to come by, but I'm working as best as I know how, and the Lord will do the rest (D&C 123:17). I'm making a lot of progress personally and the Lord is truly making me much better than I would ever be without Him. My testimony has grown so much, and the truths that I teach every day are becoming more and more firm and ingrained in my person. I'm so grateful to everyone who supports me so much, and I hope that the work I do here will be payment enough (because I might come home broke).

I know that God is our loving Heavenly Father. He really can communicate directly to us if we have the faith that He will do so. Revelation is real. Each of us has the right to receive personal revelation from our Father when we humbly seek it. He loves us. I know He does. Even when things are hard, He has greater purposes in mind. All of our afflictions will work together for our good if we let them. I know that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the living God, who gave His life on the cross and took it up again for us. He conquered death to take away it's sting from our lives. I know that God's plan for us is perfect, and allows us all the opportunity to return to His presence. I know that without Christ, this plan wouldn't work. We are all imperfect, but through Christ we can take away that imperfection and become what God knows we are capable of. As in Adam, all men die, so in Christ are all made alive (thanks Paul). I know that there is comfort and peace to be found in this knowledge. I know that if we ask, we shall receive.
God loves you, and will help you when you follow Him.

Elder Joseph Facer (2 more weeks and I can just put Elder Facer)


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