Liebe Familie und Freunde,
What a great time I had talking with you all yesterday afternoon! It truly felt like we were all right there in the same room and talking just like old times! Thanks for your words of love and encouragement; it really helped to rejouviante and refresh me. That is the power of families: the ability to help each member become better and better. That's why the Gospel of Jesus Christ focuses on families- because the family truly is the best place to learn how to "become perfect even as your Father in Heaven is perfect"- the family is His ordained orgtanization used to help each member help each other member, all the while growing stronger and stronger together as a unit. So thank you Dad, Mom, Jessica, Alison, Makell, Jared, and Dallin for making me want to be more and do better in following the example of the Master, to become a true disciple of Jesus Christ. Ich liebe euch!
I have had some realizations/connections with missionary work lately. In the words of one of my favorite hymns, "Let Zion in Her Beauty Rise", which sadly is not in the German hymnbook, the second verse says this: Ye heralds, sound the golden trump to earth's remotest bound. Go spread the news from pole to pole in all the nations round: That Jesus in the clouds above, with hosts of Angels too, will soon appear, His saints to save, His enemies subdue.
From this and from Elder Anderson's talk in conference, the purpose of missionary work is to prepare the world for the Second Coming of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. The world gets prepared for this majestic and sacred event by the individuals preparing themselves for His Coming. This happens through them coming unto Him, and becoming clean from their sins. That's why we do missionary work; not to get numbers, or to get enough members to split a ward, oder so weiter. We do missionary work so that we can allow individuals the opportunity to be part of the grand Second Coming of our Savior, being able to stand blameless, without spot, before Him, and abide His coming. Everything else is just a side effect. That's why I am so excited to go on in this great cause- having the faith enough to exercise that faith to invite others to have the faith enough to exercise it unto accepting and applying the infinite and eternal Atonement of Jesus Christ. What a personal and intimate work this is. One-by-one they come: one life changed at a time, one heart healed at a time, one soul able to be eternally saved at a time. Shall we not go on in so great a cause?!
Herr Gashi is the greatest man, and our voices have been lifted up in prayer to our Father to help him find a job. He found out yesterday evening that if he doesn't find a job in two months, he will be sent back to Cosavo. If he is returns there as a Christian, they will kill him and his family. He is such a good man- he wants this Gospel with his heart, and says it every appointment. Last appointment, he said his first reason for wanting a job was so that he would be able to pay tithing. He is such a great example to me of pure faith, of simple hope, and willingness to do what the Lord asks. "If church is at 5am, I will be there. Where ever, whenever, I will be ready" was his response to when we said that a member would be by his house a little bit early to pick him up for Stake Conference. If he finds a job that will allow him to securely stay in Germany, then he will be able to get baptized. If not, we won't be able to allow him to make these covenants, and put himself and his family in danger. I pray the Lord grants his desires and allows this wonderful man to come into the fold of God, and partake of all the great blessings that are waiting here for him. But if not, it is the Lord's will, and that is always best! We pray as if everything depends on the Lord, and then work as if everything depends on us- I like that. I have found that to be the source of many blessings in my life, and escpecially here on the Lord's mission.
Ich weiß, dass Jesus der Christus ist. Er is der Eretter und Elöser der ganze Welt. Ohne ihm, können wir in Gegenwart Gottes nicht zuruckkehren. Ich bin sehr dankbar für sein Sühnopfer. Er hat wircklich für uns gelitten, und is wircklich für uns gestorben; aber er hat für mich personlich gelitten, und ist für mich personlich gestorben. Und die wunderbare Wahrheit ist dass er auferstanden ist! Er lebt!
As always and with all my love and best,