My dearest friends and family... and fans (;( just kiddin)
Now, I have never been good at giving "last words" even though throughout my mission I have heard many, some from leaving companions, mission friends, and even a mission president.
It might just be easier to copy theirs.
But for the sake of honesty, and intergrity, and every other attribute that is expected to be learned in the mission, I will give a shot at my own.
This past year and a half has been the biggest challenge, yet the biggest blessing in my life. There are not words (in english or in spanish) to describe what a blessing it is to be set apart from the world to serve the Lord.
In my mission, I have learned many things, mostly through experience, and having to rely solely on the tender mercies of the Lord.
I learned: (Top 10)
1. What it really means to have faith in my Savior, Jesus Christ.
2. To have a love for The Book of Mormon, and to really SEARCH the
3. That obedience brings blessings, but EXACT obedience brings miracles.
4. What it really means to sustain our leaders.
5. Change is a blessing, and it gives us a greater chance to become who
the Lord wants us to be.
6. How to really use and come the appreciate the Atonement of my Savior,
7. To have charity, the pure LOVE of Christ, and what it really means.
8. To serve with all my HEART, MIGHT, MIND, and STRENGTH.
9. What it feels like to have a personal relationship with God, and the
power of prayer.
10. A little more of what Jesus Christ really did when he said "Not my will,
but thine, be done."
One of my favorite parts of the Book of Mormon is found in Alma 26
10 And it came to pass that when Ammon had said these words, his brother Aaron rebuked him saying: Ammon, I fear that thy joy doth carry thee away into boasting.
11 But Ammon said unto him: I do not boast in my own strength, nor in my own wisdom; but behold, my joy is full, yea my heart is brim with joy, and I will rejoice in my God.
12 Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise His name forever.
13 Behold, how many thousands of our brethren has He loosed from the pains of hell; and they are brought to sing redeeming love, and this because of the power of his word of his word which is in us, therefore have we not great reason to rejoice?
14 Yea, we have reason to praise him forever, for he is the Most High God, and has loosed our brethren from the chains of hell.
15 Yea, they were encircled about with everlasting darkness and destruction; but behold, he has brought them into his everlasting light, yea, into everlasting salvation; and they are encircled about with the matchless bounty of his love; yea, and we have been the instruments in his hands of doing this great and marvelous work.
The biggest and greatest lesson I learned from my mission is who I am. Not only who I am, but who we all really are, and the true and grand purpose of this life.
I know that my mission is never over, in fact, I know that this is only the beginning. I will forever serve my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
I love you all, and my gratitude for all of your love, and letters, is greater than I can express.
God be with you til we meet again!