Get Back Up Again 12/28/15
Christmas was great! We have a Saviour so if you fall, get back up again.
That Long One Though...
Every Monday when I begin this email I want to start with one of these overused lines: "A lot has happened this week..."
"We've had a lot of ups and downs this week..."
"We saw miracles this week!"
"We met some really interesting people this week..."
This past week was every one of those. That's life (especially missionary life) and if you are living it right, it should be busy, rewarding, and sometimes stressful.
Just a little insight about me (this also applies to most humans), I can get really stressed or frustrated when I can't see any results or when the learning curve isn't happening as quick as I want it to. I've also mentioned that developing patience applies to being patient with yourself as well. Keep those two thoughts in mind and you'll understand how I have been feeling.
Once upon a time, ages ago, I bought a snowboard at a garage sale. I already knew how to ski but I thought it would be a fun experience. The first evening on the slopes with the board brought new challenges. When I was riding groomers I was exciting to feel the familiar motions I had felt on a Ripstick and a longboard on the groomers.
On the second run we decided to go right off the lift (Sundown Lift at Powder) to the snow type we would call "the crud." The motions here were unfamiliar. I didn't have the right form or experience to handle what I had gotten into as well as I wanted. I fell loads of times and began to become more and more frustrated with myself.
Life brings challenges that makes all of us fall down. I have fallen many times this transfer. It feels as if before I was bombing down the hill before then I got transferred to try a snowboard. This companionship has brought struggles that I never anticipated.
President Uchdorf reminded me when I fall I need to remain hopeful and get back up again. Of this he said:
"We have a champion, a Savior, who walked through the valley of the shadow of death on our behalf. He gave Himself as a ransom for our sins. No one has ever had greater love than this--Jesus Christ, the Lamb without blemish, willingly laid Himself on the altar of sacrifice and paid the price for our sins to “the uttermost farthing.” He took upon Himself our suffering. He took our burdens, our guilt upon His shoulders.
When I remember this I can back on my feet straightaway. If I fall and forget how well I was doing previously or forget to persevere and improve than I will never reach my potential. If I focus on my daily successes and failures I lose sight of what is most important. Christmas reminded me of my Saviour and higher goals for me to focus on. President Uchdorf also said:
"Satan’s purpose is to tempt us to exchange the priceless pearls of true happiness and eternal values for a fake plastic trinket that is merely an illusion and counterfeit of happiness and joy.
"We acknowledge that your path will at times be difficult. But I give you this promise in the name of the Lord: rise up and follow in the footsteps of our Redeemer and Savior, and one day you will look back and be filled with eternal gratitude that you chose to trust the Atonement and its power to lift you up and give you strength."
I can testify of this promise. As long as I am willing to sacrifice whatever is required than He will help me overcome any trial, challenge, or opposition. After being willing to do anything the Lord asks I feel like I have had a change of heart (see Ezekiel 36:26-27, Mosiah 5:2, and You Can Do It Now!, Oct 2013). I hope we don't forget, it is difficult but it is worth it. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
Don't you get so annoyed when missionaries get so preachy? LOVE YOU!!
Oh right, Christmas was really nice. We were able to visit a few people, get a new investigator (Muslim lady), have some delicious food, play games... it was all good! The best part was being able to Skype the family though. Instantly I was reminded of the bond that we have. I felt so much love for each of you. I would do anything for you, and I know you're there to support me. It has helped me so much. Next Christmas though, I say we bag the Skype call. :)
Next week is moves so preparation day will be on Tuesday.