Hope all is well. Sounds like everything is going well. AHHHH! Still can't believe Ty is coming home! That's so crazy to me! You guys are going to have a blast picking him up! Can't wait to hear all of the amazing things! I wish that I could go. It is a trip of a lifetime. Really embrace everything and write the experiences down. Take some time to write down some of the feelings and experiences you are having. These will be things you never will want to forget. That is something that has become so important to me as I have been serving. I keep a really good journal--always writing down spiritual personal revelation, cool experiences, miracles, thoughts, and answered prayers. When I return home each night after a long day of service, I love to sit down and record small miracles and cool experiences that I saw throughout my day. That time during the day is a time I really cherish. As I look back on some of my prompts, I can see how the Spirit has led me in my missionary efforts everyday. It is really cool to see how things are put together. I compare it to a puzzle. I have all these "puzzle pieces" that I collect throughout the day and at night, I have the chance to sit down and align them all up by the Spirit. As I have done this, I have noticed many of my prayers being answered.
This brings me to another point. Through the day, the Lord is teaching me so many different things. I have to really focus and be receptive so I don't miss the important lessons that He is teaching me. I want you to compare this principle to your life as well. So many times we are asking the Lord for help. We are asking Him for so many different things and He is always there--always hearing our prayers and answering them. Although, when we have feelings of doubt or unbelief, I promise He is always there. So many times we are so busy and caught up in things that don't matter. We are always so distracted. The Lord is trying to teach us so many different lessons throughout the day, but we are too focused on things that aren't important. I am really trying to focus on seeing the hand of the Lord in my life and to notice the lessons I am being taught. As we focus on what's important and try to see the hand of the Lord in our lives, we can recognize our prayers being answered.
This week has been great! It is starting to get super cold! It snowed here a few times last week. The cold weather eats through you! It's crazy!
This week I have also been focusing on giving selfless service to everyone I come in contact with. I am trying to gain a better understanding of that principles. When Christ lived on earth and taught his gospel, he gave His whole life to serving others. Never did He focus on himself. He always turned outward in love and compassion. I have really been trying to focus on serving. I have also been focusing on maintaining a positive attitude. For some reason, last week after everything I did, I just had negative thoughts, and I was getting down on myself. So, after I prayed and asked what it was that I needed to change, I knew it was to think positively. Well, a few days later, everything seemed to be going wrong in the day. However, my goal was to maintain a positive attitude in all I do. So when things were going wrong, I didn't let it get to me. I pulled out my planner each time something went wrong and I looked at my goal, "THINK POSITIVE." Well, after about 10 times of doing that, I was walking down the street and after being rejected by plenty of people, I had a feeling to talk to this really old man walking down the street. Long story short, he was my miracle. He had been baptized many years ago and then stopped going to church. We talked to him on the street in the freezing cold for about an hour. It was such a blessing. I know that because I kept a positive attitude, I was blessed.
Our investigators are doing well, slowly progressing. We actually have a baptismal date for CHRISTMAS DAY! I really hope it sticks. It's really hard to explain. He might have some issues to work through, and our Stake President met him and said that if we baptized him now without the changes being made, he would go inactive immediately, so we're really working on it. We have a few others who are close. We just have to continue working hard.
We are really working hard to give Christ a present on Christmas. I want tho challenge you to think of something you want to give to Christ for Christmas--an act of service, etc. This gospel is true. I am learning so much every day. I have really learned a lot from the Book of Mormon. All the answers are in there. I love and miss everyone so much. Thanks for all your love and support. Have a good and safe week!
P.S. One thing everyone could do is share this marvelous video about the real meaning of Christmas: