"Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you..." (Matthew 28:19-20)

Monday, December 31, 2012

It's Time.

Liebe Familie und Freunde:

Wow, two years have never flown by so fast! I look back, and can't believe all that has happened in these two years serving the Lord. But then again, I can believe it. I have come to know that this truly is the work of the Lord, a work of miracles. Many people have asked me if I feel sad to leave, or excited, or if I even want to leave. My thoughts went to the beautiful word of Ecclesiastes:

"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace." (Eccl. 3:1-8)

I have enjoyed my mission more than anything! These have been the best two years of my life up to this point. But the time is come, and it's time to move forward. The Lord has just put me through the most intense Spiritual training course ever! Now it's time to really put it into action. And I'm excited for that! It feels very natural that everything is coming to an end, as far as being a full-time missionary is concerned. I feel it is time to go on to the next stages of life, and enjoy all that the Lord has in store for me!

Church on Sunday was the fullest I have ever seen it! It was an area-wide "Reach-Out Week", where we focused on inviting less-active members and those that were alone, to come back. There were so many people in church, several who haven't been in the building for over 10 years. I was able to bear my testimony as my goodbye to the ward. I looked out and saw so many faces of those that have blessed my life, and provided me with opportunities to learn: Danni, Vikki, Benjamin, Christiana, Stefan, Christian, Ana, McPhersons, Bruckmanns, Birgit, Celine, Lisa, Roths, Sylvia, Kodjo, and, of course, the Romanian Family. I was filled with the spirit of Family and love. I will never forget these wonderful people, and do all I can to live worthy of their trust and respect. I have seen the hand of the Lord guiding this work every single day. The many spiritual experiences, miracles, and tender mercies have confirmed to me, that this is the work of the Lord. It is true, it is real, it is His. There is no way that 19 and 20 year old boys and girls could do all that is expected of Missionaries, if it wasn't of a divine origin, led by divine hands. 

There is so much I could say and write and think right now. But of all the things I could write in my last email, the one thing I could share, the one greatest thing that I am taking home with me, the one thing that means more to me than anything else in the world, is this:

Ich weiß, dass dies das Werk des allmächtigen Gottes ist. Er lebt und ist mein himmlischer Vater. Er hört und erhört meine Gebete. Jesus Christus ist sein Sohn, mein Heiland und Erlöser. Er lebt und durch die Macht des Sühnopfers, kann ich mich umkehren, mich verbessern, lernen, lieben und das Leben genießen. Sein Priestertum und seine Kirche sind wieder auf der Erde durch den Propheten Joseph Smith wiederhergestellt worden, in Vorbereitung auf sein zweites Kommen. Das Buch Mormon ist ein Zeuge davon. Es ist ein Zeuge dafür, dass alles wahr ist. Christus führt dies Werk durch seine Propheten, so wie auch durch persönliche Offenbarung zu jeden von uns durch seinen Geist.

I know that this is the work of Almighty God. He lives and is my Heavenly Father. He hears and answers my prayers. Jesus Christ is His Son, my Saviour and Redeemer. He lives and through the power of His Atonement, I can repent, improve, learn, love, and really enjoy life. His Priesthood and His Church are again restored on the earth through the Prophet Joseph Smith, in preparation for His second coming. The Book of Mormon is a witness of that; it is a witness that it is all true. Christ leads this work through His Prophets, and through the individual and personal revelation to each of us through His Spirit. 

This work is one of learning and experiencing for ourselves, then inviting others to learn and live, the Plan of God for our eternal salvation. Shall we not go on in so great a cause? So long as I have the hands the serve, the heart to love, the voice to testify, I will.

Ich liebe euch. Danke für alles. Bis gleich! 

Elder Nathan D. Garlick
German Frankfurt Mission
"Shall we not go on in so great a cause?" D&C 128:22

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