Mis Seres Queridos,
Feliz Dia de Accion de Gracias! That means "Happy Thanksgiving" for all you Bolillos ;) Haha. I am super excited to experience a Hispanic Thanksgiving, even though I have a feeling a lot of them will just make turkey like Americans do. As of now we have 4 dinner appointments scheduled for Thursday, all with families we are pretty close to, so it will be a really nice, chill day. We aren't allowed to knock doors on Thanksgiving and I don't think our investigators will be busy, so we will be spending the whole day with families in our ward. I have so much to be grateful for...I think this is a prime opportunity to start a list...
1.My amazing family. I love them so much. They have been so supportive of me during my mission and that means so much more to me than I think they understand. I know it must have been difficult to understand why I chose to serve a mission, or even what serving a mission even meant, but they have supported me while I have been here and that means the world to me. They are also ridiculously cool. One thing I am looking forward to as the end of my mission draws near is being able to just hang out with my Mom and my sister all of the time. Before my mission I definitely put too much on my plate and didn't spend much time with them, but I know that after my mission things will be different and I plan on strengthening the relationships I have, not only with Mom and Alli but with my Grandparents, uncles aunts, cousins. Something I have realized on the mission is that no matter what your family will always be there for you. I love them all so much for their love and support and hope one day I will be able to repay them for all they have done for me.
My testimony of Jesus Christ and His gospel. In the last few years I have really come to know who He is, what He did while He was in the Earth, and who He is to me personally. I cannot fully express the gratitude I have for my Savior Jesus Christ. In the Book of Mormon, in the book of Alma, Chapter 7, verses 11-12, it reads, "And he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people. And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities." I know without a doubt that this prophecy found in the Book of Mormon was fulfilled by the Savior in the Garden of Gethsemane and on the cross. When my dad passed away and no one could have said a single word to bring me the comfort I need, I found peace in knowing that the Savior experienced exactly what I was going through. He did that because He loved me and wanted to know how to help me overcome that experience. The reality of my dad's death is still something I struggle with but I have found peace and comfort that could only come through the power of Christ's atonement, power to lift up my head and "press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love for God and all men."
The opportunity that I have had to serve a mission. As I have said countless times before, my mission means everything to me. I have experience and learned things on my mission that could not have been learned under any other circumstance. During zone conference this last week I notice something as we listened to the testimonies of those missionaries who have recently arrived and those who will be returning home before the next zone conference in March. Those missionaries who have recently arrived seemed so excited for the journey that lies ahead of them, yet nervous and unsure, but those departing missionaries had a certain glow about then. You can see that they have experienced a mighty change during the course of their missions. I not only realized that I would be one of those missionaries giving their "dying testimony" during March zone conference, but that I have experienced that mighty change on my mission. I have thought about who I was before my mission and who the Lord has helped me to become and the difference to me is huge. No one will ever be able to fully understand or comprehend what my mission has meant to me personally. Yes, those who have served missions have had their own experience and testimony of the miracle of the mission, but no one's could possibly compare to what mine means to me. I am so grateful for the privilege I have to be a full-time servant of the Lord and dedicate my time to teaching, serving, and loving His children here in Houston/Katy Texas.
For lack of time I continue without explanation, because the other 3 missionaries are waiting on me so we can go grocery shopping and then go play Socccccccerrr woot woot.
4.My present, past, and future companions
5.President Hansen and his wife
6.All of the missionaries I serve with and all they have taught me
7.The car and not having to bike around like the Elders
8.Support and love of Ward members
9.Our nice apartment with a gym
10.SPANISH oh I love spanish so much!
and 100 more things that I don't have time to mention, bah
I love you all and hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving! Pray for Jose and Elizabeth, they are doing amazing but need help getting work off on sundays.