Sunday, January 5, 2014

¡Feliz Navidad!

    Hello Family!  I hope that you all had a very Merry Christmas!  Filled with fireworks and everything!... Oh wait, that`s just us in Guatemala...  So yeah, that`s just for Jeffrey and I.  (Unless my limited knowledge of other countries comes into play here...)  But anyways, I hope that all of you had an amazing Christmas, filled with a bunch of Christmas Spirit!  I hope that we all did what President Monson said, and make sure to take off that last syllable of Christmas to remember what it is really about.

      I really like what my brother Jeffrey said this week, that all of us missionaries that are serving are giving the best birthday present we could to the Person whose birthday we are celebrating.  (That sentence is probably really weirdly structured.  Just bear with it.)  

     But now we have moved on, and it`s time for us to think about the next year, 2014!  (Wow time is going by way too fast...)  People always talk about resolutions this time of year, and honestly, I`ve never really done them.  But I think that it is important that we think of ways that we can be better people, and really stick to what we committed to.  Especially with a spirit of Christ in mind.  We all can be better, now it`s just up to us to do what we can!

     The mission`s got a really good idea with resolutions and all that.  We are trying out a 40 day and 40 night fast of things that we know we have to change.  Every one of us has something to change, so now we are promising to fast about it, and make sure that we are better missionaries.  We need to make sure we have the spirit with us at all times, so this should help us out!

     Now I just feel like this letter is just a bunch of thoughts about this time of year.  Let`s get on to what`s going down in Guatemala.

     Just to start off, we had 6 people in Sacrament Meeting this week.  That`s tied with my all time high.  I guess people are just in the Christmas Spirit!

     Our most positive people are Cruz and his daughter Sharon right now.  They are coming to church, and are still set for their baptismal date on the 11th of January.  They`ve got no real problems right now, so we are just still preparing them for their date!  I`m really excited for them.

      And now I`ve got to tell you guys about a man named Miguel.  He is a really good friend of Cruz`s family.  He`s about 70, and he`s really got no family around.  And on top of all of that, he`s almost deaf.  Well, he`s been around whenever we teach Cruz and Sharon, but we haven`t really been paying attention to him.  But on Sunday, we had started church and everything, with everyone inside already.  But after the Sacrament, who else walks in but Miguel.  He came on his own!  He just walked in like he knew exactly what he knew he was doing!  So we are definitely going to see what`s up with him this week!  Man I love miracles.  Sometimes I feel like I should deserve them, but when we are on the Lord`s errand, everything is possible.

     We also had a mom and her three kids come to church this week.  Her name is Cindy, and she is the wife of an Antonio that we had been visiting a couple months back.  Antonio now doesn`t want anything to do with us, but Cindy does.  She really wants to know about the truth, and where to find it.  So we are really going to help her out.  And after about 2 and a half months of knowing her, she finally came to church!  I`m really hoping and praying that she will keep acting on the faith that she has!

     I don`t know, it`s been just a really good week this week.  I was just talking to Elder Keele about it, and Sunday`s are what makes or breaks your success in the week.  You can have the best week in the world lesson-wise, but if no one comes to church, it feels really hollow.  But when people take that step of faith and come to chruch, it`s like walking on air.  There is no other feeling quite like it.

     Sometimes I feel like I am being blessed way to much than I deserve.  I`ve realized this week that I have a lot of faults.  I am a very imperfect person.  But God takes those imperfect people, and has them do what they do best.  There is a spot for all of us in this world!  We all have our part to play, no matter how small.  I think it was President Uchtdorf who said one time, that the world is like a Symphony, and we are the players.  If we don`t do our part, the show will go on.  But with our help, everything is just better.  We need to remember that always.

      Wow, this letter`s a honker, that`s for sure.  I just feel like putting all of my thoughts down, so you guys know what I`m thinking.  Above all though, I don`t know what I would`ve done without the mission.  I would`ve been a completely different person, and not for the better.  I am infinitely grateful to my Heavenly Father for this chance that I have.  He really is our Father, and Jesus Christ is our Brother.  We are SO blessed to be a part of this Gospel.  I know it.  And I love it.

     Until Next Time!

     - Elder Stuart

     P.S.  Malachi 3:3  This one takes a bit of explination.  A refiner and purifier of silver purifies his silver in a very special way.  He has to take the silver with tongs, sit right next to the fire, and hold it in there while it is being purified.  He knows it`s done when the silver shines and he can see his reflection in it.  Now we just need to compare ourselves to the silver and God to the refiner.  And look up Alma 5:14 while we are at it.

     P.P.S.  I really hope that last paragraph makes sense.

      P.P.P.S.  If any of you make it to this point in the email, you deserve a hug.  Just wait seven months and it`ll come!

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