Monday, July 26, 2010

It's a beautiful day!

Hello! This week has been wonderful! Hehe, your calendar quote the other day was just perfect timing: "if you want to see a rainbow you have to stand a little rain" - because that just happened to on one very rainy day when we got home all muddy, soaked head to foot. Here in the Philippines, they don't have any iceskating, but I'm sure getting my share of mud-skating. The mud here is very very slippery! One of the cutest things in the world is when little 1 and 2 year olds run up to me and "nagmamano" (bless) my hand on their forehead. It's so cute! I love the Philippines. I'm excited for one of our investigators, Brother Espada, who is reading the Book of Mormon everyday - he says that is moves his heart and makes him want to repent. That's the power of the Book of Mormon! It makes me so grateful when I hear investigators express how the spirit is changing their hearts. This is truly Heavenly Father's work.

A few things I have learned/observed here on my mission recently:

-How important it is to keep the Sabbath day holy. Heavenly Father gives us commandments for our benefit. Sacrifice brings many blessings. Sacrificing our time, talents, possessions is central to the gospel of Jesus Christ.

-Commitment-keeping is a pattern of heaven. We live in a world where being un-committed is often viewed as acceptable, part of the culture, but it is not congruent with Heavenly Father's plan for His children. His plan is centered around covenant-keeping. We all committed to accept His plan before this life, and Jesus Christ committed to do His part so that we could all have the opportunity to return to His presence. We can fully access His atonement through exercising faith, repentance, baptism, and enduring to the end in keeping the commandments - all of which require us to make covenants and keep promises and commitments. It's the only way we can bring our lives in accordance with His will. He expects us to make and keep commitments throughout our lives.

-Being open-minded is a good thing, but it can also be a great stumbling block if we take it to the extreme. Especially if our open-mindedness leads us to the belief that there is no absolute right and wrong, that all truth is relative, that God's commandments are negotiable. That's one of Satan's most clever tactics.

-It is foolish, if we know our Heavenly Father's plan, to not live a gospel-centered life. We can't keep one foot in Babylon and one foot in Zion.

-Listening to the spirit is important. We must never crowd out the still small voice of the spirit with our own opinions.

I love you lots! (especially you!) This gospel is true! Keep plowing ahead! We are very blessed!
Love, your missionary,

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