Monday, July 8, 2013

A Challenge

A couple questions:
1. Are you still sick?
   No I´m not sick anymore.
2. Should I send you socks?
3. How is your Spanish?
   Mejorando cada dia. Pero necesito practicar mucho más todavia. 
4. Did you get my package? and do you get the pouch mail?
   YES! I got it yesterday. And Mother..... I love you. The food here STINKS...... Ha ha ha ha. I think Brayden lucked out with his ability to choose what he´s going to eat every day and how much. His comment about White Castle  hamburgers made me want to destroy him. Ha ha ha. We eat rice twice a day... every day....... and that candy was so sweet that it actually hurt my tongue.... like a burn or something. I forgot that I haven´t tasted good food in like 80 days now........ Ha ha ha ha. Only 630 more...... Wow I still have a long time. 
Which reminds me.... I have a challenge for everybody reading this post. The Book of Mormon, in English has about 530 Pages. I have about 630 days left here. So I invite everyone to read just one page a day. You should be able to finish just in time to be excited for me to get home. I´ll have about 4 months when you´re done. I have already seen this exact act of faith change peoples lives. The Book of Mormon really is amazing. And It´s crazy how much it just.... makes sense. In every way. It has withstood over a hundred years of detailed searching for faults, or any kind of incorrectness, and has remained. It is true. And in it, we find the way home. The way back to the presence of God our Father, who I bear my testimony loves us and is aware of our needs and situations. I know that He sent his son Jesus Christ to provide the bridge from imperfection to perfect cleanliness and happiness. And there is no other way. Only by embracing Him, and choosing to accept His will, do we find happiness in doing anything. It´s interesting that only in surrendering, do we win. Only in giving up our will, do we attain victory in this life. And if that means being in the most desolate, primitive, forsaken desert I have ever seen, amidst people who mutually don´t understand me, walking through a thousand dusty streets in the heat of the afternoon, then I will do it. I recently studied the last chapter in St John in the New Testament, when Christ asks Peter if he loves Him 3 times. Jeffery R Holland tells us that in this instance, Peter changed completely. He understood that he could never go back to his old ways, fishing, like before the Savior came. When Christ had asked him to follow Him, it was forever. And it is the same with a mission. I understand now that I can never go back to my old life. I can´t ever be the same as I was before. And like Peter, when my mission in Peru is over, I cannot go back to my ¨fishing¨. The things I used to do. I can´t think the same when this is done. 
   This means conversion. I have also recently learned to a greater depth the difference between having a testimony, and being converted. There will be a billion people who have a testimony that do not make it to the celestial kingdom. It is not enough to say ¨I believe¨, and be done with it. Life requires constant action and growth. Like I said before, only in completely losing ourselves can we really find ourselves. It´s interesting. And I´m only just starting to understand it.
   Stuff is really hard right now. The language, the people themselves, the culture, the food, my new haircut that has made me look exactly like grandpa in Vietnam (I am dang near bald right now. probably only millimeters of hair.) and being so far away from the people I love.... but I am here until the end of this. I will die in Peru if necessary. Please pray for my investigators. 
   I love you Courtney. Try not to kiss anyone on your first date, or you´ll screw it up... trust me....
   Dad. Adios Amigo. Te amo.
   Mom. Thank you for all that you do.  Tell Sister Taylor that I thought of her when a fly buzzed in my ear the other day. I love you.

     - Elder Boekweg

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