Tell the Boekwegs to not worry about me missing Bingo, because dad´s beard easily takes my place at any party. That thing is awesome. My companion told me that he thinks I got switched out for another baby at the hospital when I was born. Ha ha ha.
Time goes so incredibly fast. Another week. Toast. I remember the 4th of July.... it was like 2 days ago in my mind.
I miss uncle´s laugh. Thanks for sending me the video. Can you send me a video of the basement? I want to see my old kingdom............
Got a letter from the Bishopric of the ward. Those guys are the best.
I see God´s hand every single day. He really does work with us. He is not as far as we all think. I believe that the Spirits who are no longer a part of the tanglible world we know really are all around us. They are protecting us. They are lifting us up. I know it. I have felt them. Sometimes, I will have a strange feeling that some spirit that loves me is with me. I think I really have never at any point of my mission been alone. I also believe that Tristen (Chances little sister) is close to me a lot. It´s the most inexplicable knowledge...... I have tons of help from the other side.
I am a little scared for the call home..... I haven´t talked to any of you in almost 9 solid months now.... I don't know what I will say. SO much has happened sinec April. It´s hard to think that none of you were there for Casa Grande..... that was SUCH a hard time..... ha ha ha ha ha ha. I am so weird now. None of you will think it´s me.... There is no way that I can convey everything that has happened since April in 1 hour. It cannot be done. You all had better just be ready with questions. I don´t want to waste any time thinking… ha ha ha.
Brett….. I love you too, man. It´s good to hear that you are all happy still….. you and your buffaloes. Your testimony is sincere. I feel it. Take it and run with it. One strange thing that the mission has taught me is that people aren´t as far from total church activity as they sometimes think. And God will tell that to you if you ask Him. So… ask Him.
It´s weird to think that Stewart Thomas has over a year in the mission now…. I feel like I went to his farewell YESTERDAY. It is so crazy……
Any young man who is able to serve a mission should. We know who we are. And if any young man should choose to stay home, he has forfeited the blessings of two years living directly and personally under God´s care and love and teaching. We are all called to this work. And we need each other to succeed. No young man serves “his” mission, but he serves his part in God´s mission. We all need each other. It is a war. We need more men on our side. Every young man has an order to march at the front for a time, and should we choose to disobey orders, we become subject to a very dangerous and dark battlefield. Christ is our Master, and He needs us to be active workers in this. We are all in this until it is over. I ask every young man who reads this to please consider serving a mission. Pray about it. Don’t be afraid. The Savior has a way of keeping us very close to Him while we are away from our families. Is a mission hard? Yes. Is a mission void of sadness? No. It is filled with the most extreme highs and lows that I believe human are even capable of feeling. You have days when you go to bed completely beaten and broken. But you will also have days and moments, really, that make up for all the hardship. When you see someone make changes for good in their life, you will feel what the Savior feels when we become more like Him by obeying Him. Many young men feel like they simply cannot afford the sacrifice of schooling time, or the time away from their girlfriends, families, comforts of home, etc. To each of them, I would like to bear my testimony that you cannot afford to not make the sacrifice. The Savior paid the price for each of our souls with His blood. It was very inconvenient for Him. So, too, should His followers experience likewise a taste of the difficulties He was given. We cannot fully understand the Atonement of Jesus Christ until we ourselves have felt something similar. The pain you feel on a mission will enlighten you. It will change testimony into conversion.
We live in different times than did anyone before us. God´s kingdom has changed. It has hastened. We need to keep up. This is where the line is drawn between the people who have testimonies, and the people whose hearts are truly converted to this Gospel. It is no longer enough to be a Sunday saint. the days have passed when simple church attendance and a chapter of the Book of Mormon a day would keep the endowed member of the church safe from the outside world. I see how hard the adversary is fighting against us. I see how much he wants us to fail and be miserable. I beg each of you to ignore the temptations that will come in the future. We can´t afford to fail. Ours is the duty to not only do what is necessary to save ourselves, but to help our brothers and sisters who are lost to do what they need to do to qualify for salvation. Don’t ignore them. Do the hard things when they come. Share your testimony…. And if necessary, use words.
I send my love, Merry Christmas,
Plaza De Armas Christmas Program 2013 Trujillo Peru
The show began with Elder Boekweg and Elder Smith singing some of E. Boekwegs original numbers.