Well, here we are. Basically my last email home in the mission. It has gone all too fast. I have learned, grown, and changed so much. I really struggle to find what to say. That's why I dedicated my personal study a few days ago to "WHAT HAVE I LEARNED?" and came up with this (sorry it'll be short for time's sake).
All that I have learned and changed has to do with the Gospel of Jesus Christ:
1. Faith--Exceptional, Exceedingly Great Faith
It has power to bring about miracles, change lives and perspectives, and is in general the key to success in life. It requires dedication, effort, works, and trust in the Lord, but all efforts are worth it.
2. Repentance--Humble, Sincere, and Continuous Repentance
Without repentance the atonement of Jesus Christ has no effect. Without repentance we cannot progress temporally nor spiritually (nor eternally). It brings about a change of heart--not just of what we feel, but of what we desire and what we aspire to become. It is the pathway to total consecration unto the Lord.
3. Keeping Covenants--Exact Obedience
See Alma 57:21, 25-27. There are no blessings without obedience. The best kind of obedience is obedience for love of God and because of a desire to serve Him, thought it is not at all bad to obey for the blessings at first. Unconditional obedience is the first law of heaven, and is the law by which all things in the universe are governed.
4. Receiving Personal Revelation through the Holy Ghost
The Lord can take the goals we set and the plans we make and make them sacred "promises" toward which we can exercise exceptional faith and turn the plans into "instructions" which we can strive for exactness in following and which give us opportunities to repent. Also, if we are willing to share with the Lord our deepest desires and thoughts, He will reveal to us if they are good and how to bring them to pass, or He will tell us what would be better. We need only be humble enough to follow His instructions.
5. TALK TO EVERYONE
This one is still hard for me, but it applies in EVERYTHING. In any field of work, study, games, social stuff, etc. talking to everyone is the key to success. Just as two heads are better than one, 20 heads are better than 2.
In general, the changes that have been wrought in me and in the mission are summed up by 1 John 3:21-24. I don't have time now to explain how, but I'll tell you next Thursday or Friday. ;D
I love you all so much. i am so very grateful for the opportunity I've had to serve the Lord for these 2 years, and I know that all these experiences will be for my good. I know that Jesus Christ is my savior, and that He has felt all things and knows how to succor us according to our weaknesses. I know that our Heavenly Father has a plan for each nad every one of us, and that He wants to help us fulfil our deepest desires so long as we consult with Him first.
See you all soon!