Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Happy New Year!

Hi! I know that it has been a while! But the good news is that I am alive! Well I hope that is good news to all of you :) I hope that everyone had an awesome Christmas and a sweet new years celebration! Can you believe it?? It really is 2014! Wow!

It really is so great to be a missionary for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints! I can't believe what I would do without these experiences that I am having! I am so grateful for every single one of them! :) No matter what may have happened I know that from everything that happens out here it is meant for me to benefit from it. I know that this is so true for all of us in life really. There are things that we go through and we wonder: Why ME? What did I do wrong to have this happen? What did I do to deserve this? Why God, did you do this to me?? I know that all of us have felt this way in one form or another. It is true. It happens to everyone. It is our natural reaction when bad things happen or when things just don't work out. We just always think why??

And the answer I have realized is that a lot of the time it is for our benefit. Then we think "Well how in the world is what I am going through for my benefit??" Don't worry!! If you are thinking that, you are not alone. I know that I have thought that so many times in my life. Especially a a missionary. Missionary work is hard! It really is. I can't lie about that one :) But hey who said it was supposed to be easy right?  Being on a mission you learn so many things! So many things that sometimes you don't even realize that you learned it already. Let me promise you missionaries aren't perfect! We try our best but we think the same things that many other people do! Things like "Why did this happen??" and the many other why questions can easily creep into our minds. But as we take a step back and think "Hey it wasn't easy for the Savior himself, so why should it be easy for me?" That really does help. What helps more is realizing that we can pray for the extra strength that we need to get through the rough times in life. As we sincerely ask help will come. That is why Christ did what He did! :) It is such great news! We can ask for help and it will come because someone has been there before! Christ has. HE has done it all so He can help us when we need it most. I know that is true. SO! When you catch yourself thinking "WHY???" Let this piece of knowledge come to you....God loves you and He wants you to learn from what you are going through :) I love this quote from Richard G. Scott too, he said: “Just when all seems to be going right, challenges often come in multiple doses applied simultaneously. When those trials are not consequences of your disobedience, they are evidence that the Lord feels you are prepared to grow more. He therefore gives you experiences that stimulate growth, understanding and compassion, which polish you for your everlasting benefit. To get you from where you are to where He wants you to be requires a lot of stretching, and that generally entails discomfort and pain.”

Just to let you all know how life is in New York! It is a beautiful day outside here!  This past week was so great! We got to visit a family who is just so awesome! They have two sons who are just hilarious! The husband who isn't a member is such a great guy! He has been visited by the missionaries for a couple of years and he is so cool! He loves tennis! Heck yeah! It was so cool to be able to talk to him about that! Let me jus say that we get along super well!! :)  We had an awesome dinner with them and then talked about how God loves us. So simple and yet so true. The spirit was so strong in that lesson as we shared how knowing that God loves us can bless. That knowledge is amazing! :) It was such a fun time visiting with them!

We also got the opportunity to visit four less active brothers in our ward and that was so great to be able to visit with them. They are all so different and so funny in their own way! Javier, Juri, John and Jeffrey! The 4 J's! We are trying our best to help them all come back to church! I love them all so much and they are great guys! John is a huge football fan so he keeps us updated on everything that is going on in college and the NFL which is funny! He loves talking about football! Jeffrey is a cat lover and a huge hockey fan! He is super funny and basically never leaves his house except for recently! Because we got him to come play hockey at the church. Now that is sweet! Slowly we are gonna get him to come to Sunday Services again. Juri is an older guy with a lot of health problems. He really is a living miracle and he teaches us more than we teach him! He is a book worm and basically has the stories in the scriptures memorized! Then there is Javier! We just started meeting with him recently! He is a nice guy and he has also even written a book! Pretty interesting! He says he wants to be coming back to church soon which is great! All of these guys are awesome!

That is what is going on here in Little Neck! :) I love you all so much and hey remember when you feel that something isn't right, think of this scripture...  To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: Ecclesiates 3:1. It is true! God has everything figured out! So just be patient and love the ride! :) I love you all!

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