April 18 – Sweet Home, Oregon

Dear Familia,

I am glad that you get to read my friend’s emails because most of the time I do not. I am trying to catch up when I have time on P-days so right now I think I am mid March, maybe April. But I like to read them. It encourages me and helps me know that missionaries struggle with some of the same things but that’s okay, we learn and grow from each other. It also reminds me that I have friends out across the world teaching the same doctrine and helping others come unto Christ. It is amazing and wonderful to know that. I love those quotes! I have found out even more as I have been out that the gospel truly does bring happiness when its teachings are applied and that we strive for the ideal, even though we most likely will not reach it in this life. The amazing thing is that we have that hope that we will in the life to come. How bright that hope shines in the members faces here and throughout the world. It is truly wonderful to see.
I am glad that Hyrum is enjoying school and that he got to spend time with Emma. It sounds like they had fun. I will admit sometimes I miss not going to the library every week. I sometimes want to read a book and then I will remind myself that I am on a mission, reading will have to wait. Although I had a really strange (if you can call it that) moment last night as I was getting ready for bed, I was reading my scriptures and I was like this is so weird that I am reading my scriptures like I would be reading a book at home. They have become like a main focus or the guide in my life right now and it amazes me how much they have taught me. They have become a way that I find peace, focus, and guidance. They apply to our lives today as much as they did when they were first written. I find it interesting in the scriptures how it talks about how without the written record, the prophets and people that we look to as examples wouldn’t have stayed true to the gospel of Christ. They needed the written record to remind them of the true teachings.
I am glad that your classes are going well and that you have found a way to improve. There is always room for improvement, or so the saying goes. I feel like that sometimes in missionary work, there are many good things happening in the area that we go to but our job is to figure out what improvement or change that the Lord needs done that we can do to help the area progress. That is our big goal isn’t it. To progress. There are times where it would be easier to just stay where we are and keep doing the good things that we are doing. But if we always stayed inside the box, would we ever know the wonders and possibilities outside the box. No, just like Sister Stephens said, “God never loses sight of our eternal potential, even when we do.” Sometimes it isn’t our thinking that we aren’t good enough or seeing all the things that we have done wrong that make us lose sight of our eternal potential. It is sometimes the unwillingness or fear to not see who we could become if we let God take the wheel. It is scary, believe me I know. But the consequence of letting Him take the lead is that we can have peace of the unknown and what is to come and that His mission is to bring to pass “the immortality and eternal life of man.” He wants us to be happy so the things that he gives us, are for our benefit.
That is awesome that Lacey Reeder got married in the temple. That will be such a blessing in her life and her family’s. What a wonderful thing to be a part of.
Thank you mom for everything you do for me. I am so grateful for you and the influence that you have had in my life.
Well, I guess real quick because a couple people asked about the temple more…um it wasn’t claustrophobic because there were places for the windows they were just the marble behind them. And all the temples I have been in before I don’t think have windows in the rooms that normally wouldn’t have them either (if that makes sense). It was beautiful and peaceful and was a temple so really I don’t think you would have even known that there weren’t any windows unless someone told you (like me). I thought I had wrote more but perhaps that was in the written letter instead of the email. My apologies. It was a wonderful opportunity though and I am looking forward to the next time that we will get to go. A little less than six months and counting.
Update on Tim. He is getting baptized this Saturday and all lights are green. It is super exciting! We are excited for him and he is just shining. There is no other way to describe it.
I love all of you very much and I know that this gospel brings peace to lives. I know that with God in our lives, we are much better prepared to face the challenges of the world.
Love,
Sister Elizondo
Oregon Salem Mission
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