Monday, September 15, 2014

Monday September 14, 2014 - Leaving Behind a Legacy of LOVE

When I had the realization two years and a few weeks ago that I needed
to come on a mission… I don´t know if I would have believed it if
anyone tried to explain to me all that I was going to experience…
Sometimes I still have to remind myself that all of this is real..
Coming up on the end of everything, I obviously started to think about
all of the things that I´ve learned , seen, felt… how I´ve grown and
changed over these many months.
Starting out as a fresh missionary in Seattle, I quickly learned that
there really is no such thing as a ¨perfect missionary¨… but that each
of us has something to offer in this great work, and as we learn to
contribute, work hard, be obedient, and rely on the Lord, He works
with us to help us to become what He needs.
I learned quickly that it was impossible to ¨learn Spanish overnight¨,
or ¨master¨being a teacher… there were a lot of times when I realized
that I might not have all of the answers, but that if I could just LOVE
them, I was happy, and fulfilling part of my calling as a
representative of Jesus Christ. They might not remember all the words
I say, what lessons we taught on what day… but a quote from M. Russell
Ballard has often come back to my mind: ¨They will remember your
love.¨ I decided that I wanted THAT to be the legacy that I left
behind for these people. That I love my Savior, I love this work, I
love them, and that through my service they would be able to feel of
the love their Heavenly Father has for each of them.
I realized the power and influence of sharing with others the love of
their Heavenly Father. And that because I get to be His voice in this
work, that has come to mean that I have been able to of that love as
well. As time went on, I found it surprising how the Lord blessed me
with the capacity to love and understand these people so different
from myself.
Right before the end of His life, Christ taught His disciples an
important lesson, that made an impression on them, and it has made
it´s mark on me time and time again. He told them to ¨love one
another¨ even as He loves us. And then told them that that would be a
characteristic of their discipleship… that others would recognize them
as His disciples for the love they showed in their labors.
This week I have been studying Alma 26.. .my favorite always… and
really just focusing on all of the emotions that Ammón expresses about
the work and his experiences in the work of the Lord. In the end
inverse 31, he says: Now behold, we can look forth and see the fruits
of our labors; and are they few? I say unto you, Nay, they are many;
yea, and we can witness of their sincerity, because of their love
towards their brethren and also towards us.
Then, he continues and asks them: ¨And now behold, I say unto you, has
there been so great love in all the land? Behold I say unto you, Nay,
there has not… ¨
The Lord has blessed me with several opportunities to be able to
return to my areas or to see people that I´ve worked with before…
Allowing me to see ¨the fruits¨of my labors, and really rejoice in the
progress that these people are making… leaving me so grateful that He
has allowed me to be a part of their lives.
I know that God lives. That THIS is His church. I know that His gospel
is the sure and solid foundation that we should build our lives on.
Faith is an action, and when planted, AND NOURISHED, it will grow.
Hope really is a powerful medicine.
Joy is a 3 letter word that I think I always associated with
Christmas… but it is a ¨condition of extreme happiness¨and is the
purpose of God´s work and glory.
MIRACLES really do exist. Big or small, they are always there, and are
wonderful reminders of how closely the Lord is working with us.
Happiness is so much more than just a ¨mood¨.. it´s a lifestyle, and
often time a choice.
LOVE is the essence of the gospel. It opens doors, heals the soul,
softens hears, overcomes obstacle, casts out fear, and is the greatest
of all motivations. It is the most pressing need that we have in the
world, yet something that is missing in the lives of so many.
My heart is so full of gratitude, and I love Argentina. The people,
their quirky culture. I honestly can´t imagine having served my
mission anywhere else. I still haven´t reached ¨perfection¨, in fact
the mission has a way of showing you just how Imperfect you are… but
the Lord is good at working with imperfect people, and I can honestly
say that I am happy, content, and feel like the Lord has blessed me to
be able to accomplish what He wanted of me in my time here.
I love this gospel. I love my Savior, Jesus Christ. I am so grateful
to have been a missionary these 18 months. To see the gospel in action
and learn how to see others and love them as Christ does. His life and
His labors were filled with His perfect love and infinite compassion
for others. Our goal is to become like Him, to invite others to come
unto Him, to share our faith, our hope, and our happiness with those
around us so that they too might know that He is. To feel of His
light, His truth and His LOVE.
That is the greatest legacy of all.

I love you all so much!
Hasta ver....SEE you next week!
Xoxox Your Hermana C

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