Alma 37:6-7

Alma 37:6-7
Now ye may suppose that this is foolishness in me; but behold I say unto you, that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass; and small means in many instances doth confound the wise.

And the Lord God doth work by means to bring about his great and eternal purposes; and by very small means the Lord doth confound the wise and bringeth about the salvation of many souls.


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Thursday, December 26, 2013

Happy Christmas, Merry Christmas, Feliz Natal, Feliz Navidad and however else you may say it.

Happy Christmas everyone!

This Christmas has been great and one to remember for sure. Christmas in London, England while being on a mission. It was quite different but that is good. It is supposed to be different. But first before I tell you what we all did this past week I will tell you the news on where I will be spending my next six weeks. I am.......................................... MOVING TO HYDE PARK. I am the new district leader in Hyde Park in Central London. My new companion is Elder Adriano and he is from Portugal. He speaks like every language so I will be learning Portuguese, German, French, and Spanish. It will be a good time.

This past week our District (the group of missionaries in our area) sang a lot. We went to go visit people and give them cookies and sing them a song. The Elders did not bake the cookies but the Sisters did. Smart move right? On Christmas Eve one of the members of the Church invited us over for dinner and a "Guys Christmas Eve" (whatever that means). The guys that invited us over one is from India and the other Mexico so it was a very cultural night with different Christmas dishes. We had an indian dish and some authentic mexican food so it was a success. They could of fed an army with the amount of food they prepared but the 6 of us handled it nicely. After we went back to our flat for the night to get ready for Christmas. We cleaned and made it look nice so Santa would be impressed with us as missionaries. And he was. It smelt, felt, and looked like Christmas. We had our tree in the corner (thanks mom for that), we had it lit with scented ornaments my companion got from home and with beautiful lights and a star. Underneath we had all of our present stacked neatly and with it organized so we knew exactly where our stuff was. We had Christmas music playing in the background to top it all off. The four of us in the flat decided to have a spend the night in the living room.So we dragged out all of our mattress' and slept by the lit tree waiting for Santa to come. Before we went to bed we read Luke chapter 2 together and said flat prayer before crashing into our pillows. We were bad and forgot to make cookies and put out carrots but we knew Santa would understand because our cookies would have injured him. We fell asleep by the tree and He was quite sneaky and did not wake us up in the night. We woke up to a sight of presents and decided to open them immediately. We all got amazing gifts and it was so weird opening them with four strange yet amazing men rather than our beloved families back home.

We all finished opening presents and getting ready and by then it was time to go the church to watch Disney!! On Christmas and today (Boxing Day) we are allowed to watch Disney Movies or Children's movies. We started of by watching Dispicable me 2 and I about died throughout the whole movie. Those little minions are amazing. After that we watched Wreck it Ralph and finished off with The Muppets. After our movie marathon we were invited over to a members families house for dinner and more movies! This family is from Laguna Beach, California and their Christmas tradition is an "Anything Goes Dinner". So they asked all the missionaries what they wanted and made it for us. I was quite stressed about such a decision but finally my mind settled on the most random meal that came to mind. Chicken and Waffles. And it was delicious indeed. I am weird I know but hey it came to mind so I went with it. We watched Monsters University after dinner and then got to Skype our families. It was a really great night. If you want to know how skyping went ask my mom but try not to make her cry please. Thank you haha sorry mom. Love ya.

As I said today is Boxing Day. It is a holiday here in England and each person I ask what it is, I get a different response. So as far as I know it is a day full of sport, a day of shopping, a day of boxing up all your bad presents and returning them for cash, literal boxing day (that would be a "hit" at my home), and boxing things up that you do not need because you have so much junk from past years. So pick whatever you wold like best and that is what Boxing Day is.

I hope that this Christmas has been great for all of you and I really hope you were all able to slow down and feel of the actual spirit of Christmas. It is not too late to feel the spirit of the season. We call it Christmas season since the 1st of December so we should still call it that until the 19th January, 25 days after. It has been 6 months today since I left home and it has flown by. Time is flying by for me. Really you lose yourself in the time. Lose yourself in time as you serve others. What an amazing feeling it is. I love you all and Happy Christmas.

Here is a picture of us Elders in the Tube and our Christmas Flat. Enjoy.
 

 
 
 

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Tis the Season to be Jolly!

Evening Mates!

Another week closer to Christmas! It is hard to walk through the streets without getting hit with shopping bags. People literally shop until they drop! 

So this past week Elder Mitchell and I have been teaching this woman named Florence. She is a from Nigeria and really loves Jesus. She was taught by the missionaries like 20 years ago and we have recently found her and are now preparing her to get baptised. She said she was not ready 20 years ago but now she feels like she is in the right spot. 20 years ago she also pregnant at the time with a girl. Now that girl is 20 years old and is not taking the discussions with us with her mother. It is amazing to be able to teach both of them. I love how we are all prepared for the gospel in our own due time. But we at some point in our life we will be prepared. 

While being a missionary I have come to notice how hard attending church is for people learning about the gospel. They do not understand that it is a commandment to keep the sabbath day holy and to worship thy god unceasingly. But for those who attend church regularly it is one of the easiest commandments to live. I have really noticed that attending church does make a real difference. It changes your outlook on life and it a place where we can seek revelation. Church is so important and it has taken me 18 years to finally get it.  

Today we spent our day on the new double decker buses. They are so cool. They look new but they also look like they are from the 50's. We rode down to central London to see some sights and then went to Soho. So here is a boy band photo in Soho. People looked at us funny. 

Here are some cool quotes I heard this week: 
"Belief is not the absence of doubt, but the triumph over it."

"Where we spend our time represents what we love."

"That woman looks like a swamp donkey." Says angry black man. (The woman called him a mean name before hand but I wont repeat it.)

I love you all and have a MERRY CHRISTMAS!!

Elder David









Monday, December 9, 2013

"Pure Motives Are The Essence of Divine Guidence"

Ello Mates!
 
Another week in the books! The Missionary Band has been travelling all over England these past two weeks. You could say that "the best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear." So that is what we have been doing! I am really glad that I switched paths in high school from being all sports to all music. It was honestly quite weird changing from one to the other. I had new friends, new after school activities, new everything! But hey now look what it has led too. I now am able to help others feet the spirit through music. I have a firm testimony that music invites the spirit into our lives. I am greatful as well for the people I have met doing both sport and music. I have gained lifelong friends that I truly do love.
 
 How did it go meeting new people this past week? Did you actually do it? If not, here it is again. Expand your network. Do things that are different and you will find things out about yourself that you may not have known before. That is what happened when I started doing musicals. I did not think I would like it at all but it grew on me. It was an amazing experience and I do not regret it one bit.
 
This week we were teaching this man named Obiola. He is really lazy. We went to see him at 7 at night and he was sleeping. He sleeps literally all day long. Even though he was coming out of a deep sleep we had a really spiritual lesson with him and he committed to come to church with us on Sunday. Sunday morning comes and we get a text from him saying "Hey missionaries. Don't come by this morning to pick me up. I need to sleep. Oh and no need to come back I will just study the Book of Mormon myself. You guys are interferring with my sleep schedule. But thanks for everything." So yeah we don't teach him anymore. Some peoples children. But this past tuesday Elder Mitchell and I were setting up for our wards Ping Pong night. It's intense. And while we were waiting for it to start, a woman and daughter walk into the church. They come up to us and say in broken english, "Hello we are Christains and we want to help the church with cooking an cleaning for free." We were amazed! Huong and Lily are from Vietnam and have moved here recently. Her 8 year old daughter is fluent in English and translates for her mother. We are seeing Huong and her family this coming week! Posh miracle.
 
I have been reflecting on my past decisions. Like for instance what I was talking about earlier. School activities, my future University, my mission, and so forth. I was wondering why I decided to choose one way rather than the other in certains circumstances. My mission president shared this quote with us; "Pure motives are the essence of divine guidence." I realized that with my decisions I always included the Lord in helping me make the right choice. I'd like to think that my motives were pure so that I qualified for the divine guidence. I know that the Lord was directing me in the path in which he has prepared for me and that he does that for all of his children. We are eligible for our Heavenly Fathers guidence as we strive to keep the commandments, pray fervently, and listen with our spiritaul ears. In the scriptures it tells us the the Holy Ghost is neither loud or harsh but rather the still small voice. In 3 Nephi 11:3 it reads;
 "...and it was not a harsh voice, neither was it a loud voice; nevertheless, and notwithstanding it being a bsmall voice it did cpierce them that did hear to the center, insomuch that there was no part of their frame that it did not cause to quake; yea, it did pierce them to the very soul, and did cause their hearts to burn."
The Holy Ghost will guide you in all things in which you should do according to the purity in your motives. Take a moment to think about your motives in your everyday activities. Are they in harmony with our Saviour's teachings? We are able to make changes to realign our lives with the straight and narrow path. What a perfect time of year to do so. With Chrismas fast approching, let us all strengthen our testimony in Jesus Christ. As you do so with your families, you will feel a sweet spirit within the home. A home centered on Jesus Christ, is a home where He can reside.
 

I love you all and hope you enjoy this Christmas season! Have a wonderful week.
 
Love,
Elder David

Monday, December 2, 2013

Some Cool People

While serving here, you meet some very cool people! So I wanted to take this time to introduce you to them!
1. Keenan: There is a man in our ward who has helped make Man of Steel, Harry Potter, Avatar, and so forth. He is a super cool guy and he shows us clips in movies where they always use him as an extra.
2. Herbert West: We recently found out that Mr. West used to be the badest Gangster in London. He is in our ward as well. He lost his leg in war but when he had his leg he stood at 6 feet and 5 inches. He is from Antiga. He now moves his way around London in his wheel chair and people are still affraid of him and his power haha. The other missionaries went to go buy some fruit for him and the men selling the fruit asked who are you buying this for? Soon the missionaries told them it was Herebert. "Herbert West?" The missionaries nodded their head. As soon as they did this the other men went crazy and asked how we knew Herbert. They then told us that 20 years ago he owned the streets and that he was loaded with money. They were shocked. We then asked Herbert at church what that was about and he said "Everyone has a past. Lets not talk about it." Haha Crazy man.
3. Mr. Obi: I met a man 2 weeks ago that owns a international oil company. He was quite wealthy....
4. Mary: Mary is a sweet little Sri Lankan woman from our ward and she revealed to us that her sister is married to the President in Sri Lanka! Her sister is Mormon too.
5. Kurt: One of the Arsenal Coaches. We eat at their house every Sunday night.
6. Mehdi: This man lived in Iran and as he grew up he started to believe in Jesus Christ. That is a big no no in Iran. So he was almost killed. He fled the country in his late teens and is now one of the best cocktail artists in London. He is trying to stop drinking though. The Irony.
7. Henrike: Henrike is going to be a friend of mine even after my mission. She has back packed across America, has learned 4 or more languages including sign language, has like 5 masters degreees, her Dad has been the doctor for the last 2-3 Popes, and she is the nicest and most sincere woman I have ever met. She is from Germany and helps me with my German. She now practices Chinese Medicine and has a job oportunity to be the doctor for the Red Bull Pilots in Austria. She has done it all. She is so amazing.
There are some amazing people in this world! And I have met all of these people by the same method. Opening my mouth. When you open you mouth to talk to people around or just in the que (line) at the grocery store, you will meet some amazing people. Everyone has a story. Everyone has had cool experiences. We are all brothers and sisters so lets get to know one another. This week lets try something. Talk to random people while doing your daily business. I promise you will meet some great people and you will also meet some wacko's too. Wacko's make for good stories. I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving this past week. Now let the Christmas festivites commence! Have a great week! I love you all!
Oh and here is me on a rope swing.
Love,
Elder David
 
 
 
 

Monday, November 25, 2013

The "Pee" Miracle

This week we had a really cool miracle!! And yes, we call it the Pee Miracle! So Elder Mitchell and I were going to see a less active man. After we have left this man's home we decided to go "Lost Sheep Finding." Every week we receive names and addresses of people who may or may not live in our ward boundries. So it is our job to go find out. So we call it Lost Sheep Finding. So we find our way to the flat complex and when we get there we look for the piece of paper where it says the exact flat number. Unfortunately we left the paper at home and had no idea what flat the man was supposes to live at. At this point Elder Mitchell has to go to the bathroom (remember there are no toilets anywhere). He is pacing up and down the sidewalk and finally he just shouts, "It is number 6! Just hit 6!" The number did not seem right but I just thought, "what the heck." So I rang flat 6. Then all of the sudden the buzzer rings and the door opens. This never happens. Whenever we ring a flat number they just talk through the intercom and don't let us in. But this time the door opened with no conversation. So we make our way up to flat 6 and knock on the actual door again. This woman answers the door. We introduce our selves and asked if an Owen lived here. She told us that Owen doesn't live here. We then felt a prompting to introduce ourselves again and to talk about how families can be together forever and how God wants us to have strong and healthy families. She became quite intrigued. She told us that she was just bathing her little son and that she has a family that she loves dearly. By the end of our short conversation we set an appointment to come back and share more about the church. We will be going this week to teach her and her family. Even though we did not find the person we were looking for, God placed someone in our path so we could teach them more about the restored gospel. And it is all because Elder Mitchell had to pee. So thank you London for not having any toilets. And thank you Elder Mitchell for having a small bladder.

This morning the Elders in our flat woke up early to go down to Central London early so we see London Bridge and Tower Bridge as the sun came up. After that we went to Canary Wharf and rode bikes around London. In London you do not ride bikes on the sidewalk but on the street. So we found ourselves swerving in and out of traffic in Central London. I felt so dang free!! We biked from London Bridge to South Kensington. That is a lot of biking in London! I will attach some pictures of what we saw! I hope you have a great week and HAPPY THANKSGIVING!! Eat some turkey, mashed potatoes, and pie in remembrance of me. I love you all!

Love,
Elder David
 
 
 

Monday, November 18, 2013

Things That Annoy Me



Y'alright Mates?

We had another fantastic week! Things are looking up for London North! But by my subject I thought I would talk about funny things that annoy me while on my mission. So sit back and enjoy!

1. Jehovah Witnesses
In London there is quite a big population of Jehovah Witnesses. They are everywhere and they do missionary work just like us. Except people hate them. They knock on peoples doors and instead of inviting people to learn more, they smash people with words trying for force them to believe. They really like to "Bible bash." So people sometimes confuse us because we always go in two's and dress nice. And when they do, that annoys me. 

2. Drunk Homeless People Who Ruin Lessons
When ever we are talking with someone on the street, in a park, or on a bus, it seems like every drunk homeless person in London is attracted to us. They always come and ruin lessons! Satan himself  possess these demon people to make them run away. That annoys me. 

3. Immodest Woman
London is the fashion capital of the world. And the latest fashion seems to have less fabric. Even in winter! To any girl reading this; please dress modest for us men. It holds us to a higher standard. When the weekend comes, the girls here think they must dress in a way that attracts the scum of the street. I really wish that the latest fashion was modest. But because it isn't, that annoys me. 

4. Immodest Drunk Woman
Need I say more. 

5. Marriage and Children in London
This Sunday at church I found out that in many business environments, parents do not mention they have children. They feel like they are ashamed of being a parent! Crazy right?! The Elders Quorum President has a picture on his computer at work of his new born son and when he was alone in the break room another man came up and whispered to him that he has children too. After the conversation the man said not to tell anybody then walked away. It really shocked me. The culture here is weird especially comes to marriage and children. No one gets married. Everyone is just partners. STUPID! Yeah, that annoys me. 

6. Secular England 
People hate talking about God here. We wear a suit everyday and people think we are high up business men... until they see the name tag and all of a sudden we transform to side walk cleaning garbage men. That annoys me. 

7. The Soda
I love Dr. Pepper. I love it. And here Dr. Pepper is rubbish! All the soda's are rubbish. They are really watered down. After a really long day I want to wind down with a nice cold American Dr. Pepper. But they can not be found! That annoys me. 

8. Toilets (restrooms)
So in America there are toilets (restrooms) everywhere. Every shop, restaraunt, and petrol station (gas station) has one. But here it is the opposite! If you want to use the toilet you knock on a random door and ask. I will never do that but that is what some people do. I wish there were more toilets. That annoys me. 

9. Traffic
London is busy. There is always traffic and we have place to go and people to see. Traffic annoys me. 

10. I got nothing else

I love London but with every place has its downs. This email was not serious so do not take it like I am miserable and am annoyed with everything haha. It is quite the opposite.  Here are just a few that I have picked up on. One thing that I am loving though is how London looks during Christmas! Everywhere is being decorated and it is fantastic. I am going to attach some pictures of the things I see day to day during this Christmas season. Have a great week and just try to smile. Attitude changes everything. Make the annoying things turn into funny things. It is possible. 

Oh also this past Saturday, the Hyde Park Stake had culture night!! Since our stake consists of people from over 115 different countries in the world, everyone brought a dish and a booth for their own country. It was so much fun. There were performances from every culture. I loved it! I will attach some pictures of that as well. 

Love,
Elder David














Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Everyone has their own "balloons."

Hello Mates!

Of course last night was Moves Call Monday! So here is the news on where I will be for Thanksgiving (which isn't a thing here) and Christmas!! I will be in...... LONDON NORTH! STILL! The day after Christmas marks my 6 months of my mission. I have spent the last six months in the same flat and the same area! That is so crazy. I am still going to be with Elder Mitchell and now I will be follow-up training him. I am excited that I do not have to move and meet new people for Christmas but when we found out last night that we were staying, people in the ward started to invite us over for some Christmas fun. I know that that is far out but it will be fun when it comes. 

This past week Elder Mitchell and I have been meeting a lot of fantastic people. All of them, unfortunately, live in a different country. We end up giving them a card with a website or ask for their number and address so that we can give it to the mission where they live. I received this overwhelming feeling that these people are not forgotten. Because this is the Lords work, He makes things happen. Miracles are everywhere and I know that these people that leave will one day learn more and accept the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

I love being here in England. Especially in London. There is always something going on! November 5th is a big holiday here! It is compared to our 4th of July. They BBQ and blow things up and the city of London lights up the sky with fireworks. Elder Mitchell, Elder Hein, Elder Nolan and I were walking home and we decided to take the scenic route. We went to Alexanders Palace which is a massive pallace that overlooks all of London. We all go there and sit on the steps looking down at London and see fireworks from every direction go off. It was quite magical. I will remember that moment forever. I can not give words to explain how peaceful and fun it was to see that view. 

On Saturday Elder Mitchell and I were about to head to a teaching appointment. We were with one of the young men in the ward and he came along with us. While waiting for the 134 bus I heard this deafening scream. A scream so loud that I had to plug my ears to stop the pain. This noise come from a young boy that was standing behind me. My immediate thoughts were "He must have broken every bone in his body" or "He might have smacked his head on the pavement." As I turned around I saw thing young boys mother cradling him as an effort to comfort him or calm him down. His hand was reaching to the sky. I first thought that was for dramatic effect but I then discovered that he was reaching for something in the sky. This little boy was dying over a balloon. His deafening scream, his hysterical crying and tantrum came from a balloon string that slipped from his tiny fingers. I then thought to myself, "Are you serious? You are crying over a stupid little balloon. A balloon that can be replaced in a minute and a balloon that has no monetary value. Wow. Get over it." I was quite harsh to be honest. But as the crying began to cease and this little boy began to reclaim his breathe, my thoughts changed. I began to ponder from the boys perspective. This boy is out in Muswell Hill with his mother. They stop in a side shop to get some food and on the way out. This mother rewards her son with the balloon he has been eyeing since they sat down to eat. He is delighted. This balloon is his best friend for the day. As the day goes on he begins to test the balloon. Letting it go and catching the string again (like all little boys tend to do). He lets go for one final time and the balloon, that is his best friend, is now gone. His entire day is ruined. His dreams are now crushed and he will not be able to live another second because of the tragic loss he has experienced. As I thought about the situation in this aspect, I felt bad for the boy. I wanted to help him. To restore the happiness he once knew. Even though, to us, losing a balloon is minuscule compared to our life problems. All of us are in different stages of life. I am here in London serving a mission. Some of you are married and have children. Others are at University and a few are mature in years who love watching their grandchildren grow up. We all face different problems. To that boy his problem was huge, to us, small. Your problem may be small to others but it is big to you. No matter what trial you are going through it is tough. It is difficult and is personal. You may think that "no one knows what I am going through. No one understands." This is not true. There is one person who does. Jesus Christ has suffered through every pain, affliction, temptation, and trial that you have and ever will go through. He, alone, knows what you are feeling. He knows how to heal you. He knows what is best for us because he has already passed through them himself. Lean on him. Accept his atonement and repent. As you humble yourselves to do so, your trials may not pass, but you will be able to handle them with more power and strength. The waves of the ocean may not get smaller, but the boat you are sailing on will be bigger. Everyone has their own balloons. "...Mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that that stand in need of comfort..." Mosiah 18:9. The mother in this story stands as a perfect comparison to our Savior. She knows that this pain and suffering is for a short time. She knows that there will be better days but she still decides to hold him in her arms to try to comfort this screaming child. Your may also be that help to comfort those that are in need of help. Act Christlike and reach out to care for someone you love.  If you are the one passing through the trial that is comparable to the boy and his balloon in this story; do not give up nor fall down. But rather stand strong and courageous leaning upon our Savior. Remember His promise, " I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee." In the Book of Mormon there is a passage that reads, "... For not withstanding I shall lengthen out mine arm unto them from day to day, they will deny me; nevertheless, I will be merciful unto them, saith the Lord God, if they will repent and come unto me; for mine arm is lengthened out all the day long, saith the Lord God of Hosts." 

 Have a wonderfully posh week and reach out to someone in need. You both will be blessed for doing so. 

With Love,
Elder David

Monday, November 4, 2013

London

Hello Everyone!
This week has been a great week! We have had some amazing miracles and I am very thankful for these experiences.
About two months ago Elder Hutchins and I were talking to this man and he was super cool to us. We were both waiting for a bus and when our bus came we then said goodbye and left. When we boarded the bus, we looked at each other and were flabbergasted that we did not try to set up an appointment with this man. It just did not feel right at the moment. This last week I have been thinking about that man and have been praying that I would see him again. Then all of a sudden it happened! Elder Mitchell and I were riding a bus we normally never take and while we are on the bus he then boards!! I was so excited and went up to him and asked if he remembered me. He said yes and we then got to talking. We both then got off the bus and exchanged contact information and he said give me a call to set up a time this next week when you can come over to see me and my family!! It was definitely a miracle. I now believe that that man was not ready to receive the gospel two months ago, but now he might be! I love how God answers our prayers. Sometimes in the strangest ways.
It is transfers week and I do not have much time to email but I hope you all have a great week and I will talk to you all next Tuesday with the news of where I will be spending Thanksgiving and Christmas!
Love,
Elder David

Monday, October 28, 2013

Agency. We all have it. Just use it wisely.

Hello Mates!
It has been 4 months since I have been home. It is really amazing how time flies when you are serving the Lord. I really can not believe it. I have had a pretty good week. We have met some really amazing people and are seeing a lot of progress in all our investigators. Our district, which consists of 6 total missionaries, is one of the best districts in the mission and all of us have been out less than 6 months. We are all young but are truly dedicated to this work. I love serving my mission in London. I think this city truly fits me. There is no question that I am a city boy.
This past week we have had some really interesting moments. There has been a common theme when we talk to people on the street. The theme this week or rather the question of the week was, "If there is a god why do so many bad things happen?" Every other person we talked to had this question. Of course this was said by the average atheist trying to test us with our answer. Foolishness I tell you.
I was trying to find in the scriptures an answer to this question. Something simple that I could show to the simple minded. I then came to the scripture in 2 Nephi in the Book of Mormon. It is found in chapter 2 Verse 27. It reads, "Wherefore, men are free according to the flesh; and all things are given them which are expedient unto man. And they are free to choose liberty and eternal life, through the great mediator of all men, or to choose captivity and death, according to the captivity and power of the devil; for he seeketh that all men might be miserable like unto himself." As it states in the first part of the verse, we are free to choose liberty and eternal life. We are also free to choose captivity and death. WE have the option to choose. When I showed this to our atheist friend, he then began to say, "Well if God is all powerful than why cant he just stop us from choosing?" I then read the verse to him again and asked him "Would we really be free?" He began to understand.
I tell you this story because many people do have this question. We must understand why we are here on this earth. "For behold, this life is the time for men to prepare to meet God; yea, behold the day of this life is the day for men to preform their labors." We are here to be tested. We all have our agency to choose these things. Of course there is children who are born in
unfortunate circumstances. You might ask "Where is their fair chance?" But I just ask you that if men were to exercise their agency in righteousness, would this world be different? If men and woman obeyed the commandments of God this world would be a much different world then what it is today. We have the agency to choose. So be the change you want to see in the world. Live in a way that people notice that you are different. That you are a disciple of Christ. If you make a conscience effort to change one thing in your life that is not in harmony with Gods teachings, and correct it in the coming week, then you will see a difference in your life and the lives of people around you. So give it a try.
Last P-day a few of us missionaries went to Harrods. If you do not know what Harrods is, then look it up. Inside there are £68,000 iPhones made out of gold. They used to sell lions, tigers, and bears oh my. And there are incredible cars sold inside. If you needed anything at all you would go to Harrods. ANYTHING. They have authentic Harry Potter Wands!! It is a childhood wonderland. So look it up! I will attach some pictures of what it looks like on the outside and the cars that are parked out in front of the building. And yes one of the cars is made out of velvet...In London there are some very creepy posters that are just weird. So I thought I would share some with you. When you see them all over they start to become ridiculous and just funny. And Last is a picture of my Halloween Package. Austin thought his note was hilarious. That GOOB.
I love you all and hope that you try to use the agency we have been given for good. I know you can do it. Have a great week!
Love,
Elder David
 
 



 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

 

Monday, October 21, 2013

The Royals!


1.This is Royal Alberts Hall and this massive statue in Hyde Park
 
 


2.This is where Prince Williams and Kate just live. They moved in a few weeks ago! It is massive!!


"I learn from the grass." ~Weird Woman in London

Hello once again,
This week has been a good week in London North. We also had stake conference and a few other missionary meetings. This past week we have been teaching two amazing families. One family is from Jamaica and consists of 2 parents and 6 children. Which is very unusual for London. They are great and have been interested in learning what Mormons believe. There youngest son, Joshua, begged us to make his parents come to church with us. It was so cute and helped us ask them if they would come to church. They politely declined, because they already go to a pentecostal church. We are seeing them again this coming week.
We have also been teaching this wonderful family from Ecuador. This family consists of Janeth (the mother), and her 3 children. They are so nice and have been taught by the missionaries before. We will be seeing them this next week and they will be coming to church this Sunday. Whenever we go over, she has a 5 course meal ready for us. This last time she cooked us dinner and made us apple pie and a chocolate cake. We have to be carefull to not go over too much. My suits are fitting really nice right now and I do not want that to change. Running every morning has really helped though.
Stake Conference was really great this past week. It was focused on Member Missionary Work. It was so helpful for us missionaries. Since the Conference, the ward has been willing to help us missionaries. They are starting to come teach with us. We hope that they will soon begin to invite their friends over to meet with us. I have learned that member missionary work is much more effective than knocking on doors or proselyting in town centres. If every member invited a friend to take the missionary discussions or even to come to church, this work would progress in a way that we could not comprehend. I wish I was in your shoes right now. Just to be able to have friends who would benefit from the gospel. INVITE THEM!! Just do it people.
This week we met this weird woman. Which I guess happens every week. We started talking about God and she just blurted out "I learn from the grass. It teaches me all things which I should do." From there the conversation turned for the worse. I just had to hold back form laughing. Some peoples children haha. I love London and the Crazies that we meet each week. And on the other hand we meet amazing people. Like Fredrick. Fredrick is from Kenya and is studying in University. He is really loving the Book of Mormon and has tremendous faith. I love people like him and they make going on a mission worth it.
This past Thursday we were walking home and were caught in the middle of a live show in Archway! There were dancers all of the place and people dancing on the side of a huge tower! It was so cool! It was just a random Thursday in London and all these cool things were happening around us. I have a few cool pictures and I will share them all with you.
I hope you have an amazing week. And if you vote for me all your wildest dreams will come true. Love you all.
Elder David
1. This is the people dancing on the side of this building
2. This is the Ecuadorian food that Janeth makes for us. So good. It sometimes feels like I am serving in South America.
 
 

 



Monday, October 14, 2013

Oi! Meu Nome e' E'lder David. Eu nao falo porteguese muito bem.

Hey!

This week has been a pretty great week. We have been teaching this wonderful old woman from Columbia. She is the cutest old woman. As we walk into her flat, she immediately told us to sit down. She then pulled out her Mandolin and performed this little concert for us. I took a video of her so you will be able to see it when I get back. She is so amazing and loves hearing about what Mormons actually believe. Some people here really have heard some weird things about Mormons that are just not even close to being true. This one man came up to us and was quite interested about why we practice polygamy (which we don't) because he wishes we did because his wife had passed a few months prior and wishes he had a back up wife to help him through this hard time. He was quite sincere with his explanation but we had to correct him and say we don't practice polygamy. He is still meeting with us and is quite interested in our message now. He really likes that part where he can be sealed to his wife for all eternity. Earlier this week, a man approached us and asked if we drink juice. He honestly thought that Mormons do not drink juice.... Some peoples children.

Two days ago we received a referral from church headquarters in Salt Lake City. The referral said that we should contact this woman as soon as possible because she was just in Utah and loved the Visitors Center there. So Elder Mitchell and I took the hour long bus ride to the address of this woman. When we knocked on the door this big and mighty woman answered the door then immediately said "I hate religion and I don't want to hear a word of what you have to ." She then slammed the door in our face. We were quite confused because we were expecting a Chinese woman to answer, since the referral said she was from China. So we decided to knock again. She answered and before she could say anything to us I said, "Look we are not trying to convert you but rather asking if you know who this person is." She was thrown off by my direct approach and said, "no" in a quite and timid voice. We said thank you and went on our way. We were discouraged that we had taken so much time out of our night to find out it was a false address. On the bus ride home we decided we were going to bus find. Meaning that we would just sit next to random people and try to set up a time where we could see them again. On that bus ride home we set 3 new appointments and met an amazing family. God had blessed us and I am grateful that He is on our side to help us with this great and marvelous work.

Henrike is doing really well and is now planning on being baptised on the 27th of October. If you could keep her in your prayers that would be wonderful. She has already read the Book of Mormon and just finished reading Preach My Gospel. She is so smart. We have a deal that as long as I teach her the Gospel, she will teach me German. Ish vice das musik deen hileagen guyst in unzer leeben ienladen kann! I love being in London because I get to learn all of these languages. I speak Portuguese the best. I am hoping to pursue learning a language when I get back. I love being able to speak to people who are from all over the world.

I love you all and I know that life does throw us a few curves. But always remember that as you wait back and rely on the Lord, you will crush the ball out of the park. Pray often, repent always, feast on the words of Christ, and endure to the end. Then the Father shall say "Ye shall have Eternal Life." Exclamation point. Have a great week and I will talk with you all very soon.

Love,
Elder David

Monday, October 7, 2013

Its A Boy!

Hello Everyone!!

So It is a Boy! I have birthed a son and his name is Elder Mitchell. My first mission son haha. He is from Jacksonville, Florida and has that deep south accent. It is so funny!

So this week has been one of my favourite weeks on my mission and it is because we had General Conference!

We went into Central London to watch conference in the Hyde Park Stake Centre. I had a few favourite talks and that really inspired me.

The first was from President Uchtdorf in the Saturday Morning. "Doubt your doubts before you doubt your faith" was the quote that really stuck out to me but really the entire talk was amazing. It talked about how crazy we are to be apart of a religion that spends 10 hours of our weekend watching talks on the Tele and how we spend 3 hours at church. We go on 2 year missions. We have home teaching. We have callings in our church that are volunteer and that no one gets paid to do. We pay a 10% tithe. We donate to the poor once a month and much more. Now who in there right mind would join such a church? No one would. Unless they knew it were true and has the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

I also loved the talk given by Elder Bednar in the Saturday morning session about tithing. Go pay your tithing haha. #

I also loved president Uchtdorfs talk he gave in priesthood about how we all have more strength than we think and that we just need to stand up now. He is an inspired man.

And of course President Monsons Sunday Morning talk. His words were beautiful and strengthened my testimony that he is a Prophet of God. I love this church. I love serving a mission. I love seeing the difference it makes.

When these talks come out in the Ensign to read, I counsel you to read them. You will receive revelation and it will bless you in your life. Just do it. I know that God loves us and wants us to reach out to our friends and family who have not tasted of the delicious fruit known as The church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Spread this Gospel. Not the increase numbers in the church. Not because I just say so. But because it will bring them happiness in this life as well in the life to come. Our purpose is to invite others to come unto Christ by helping them receive the restored gospel of Jesus Christ, by being baptised by the authority given from God. So Go and Do. The blessings will follow.

I love all of you and hope all is well. If you could pray from Henrike, Obi, and Katerina that would be great. They are all planning on being baptised in the coming month and could use some prayers to confirm that they are making the right decision. I love you and hope you have a great rest of your week!

Elder David
 
 

Posterity Picture. From Left to Right: Elder Adriano, Elder Huthcins, Me, Elder Mitchell.
 

 
 
 
 
And the MOST BEAUTIFUL CAR EVER!
 
 

 
 







Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Baptisms

So Lawrence got baptised!!!! YAAYYAYA. He is such a great man. He does not look too happy but believe me he could not stop smiling the whole day. The one time he didn't smile was for a picture... weirdo.

And then Angela! My first baptism! She is from Ghana and asked me to baptise her this last Saturday! She is so amazing and it was a privilege to be able to do so.
 
 

 

WOWZA!!!

So Elder Hutchins and I had a dinner appointment last night with John the Baptist (he is an Area 70 of the Baptist Church so we gave him that nickname) and he let us try on his Kilt... He is from Scotland and is such a great guy! That kilt costed like 2000 pounds! WOWZA!! 
 
 
 


 
 
Also here is a view of London! It is fantastic!

 

Should I Stay or Should I Go?!

Hey there folks!

So many of you are wondering the big news if I am staying in London or moving out? So here are the final results....................................................................I am STAYING AND TRAINING A NEW MISSIONARY!

I got the call last night and was so excited about staying where I am and with getting a brand new missionary to train. I am so nervous to train because I have only been out for 3 months. President Jordan said "It is quite unusual to train this early but we know you can do it." I feel so honoured to be trusted by him and most importantly the Lord. I love this work so much and am finally getting the hang of it. It is now easy to talk to everyone on the street and anyone I sit next to on the bus and tube. It is a blessing from my Heavenly Father to be able to do this.

This past week I have been studying some great missionaries found in the Book of Mormon but as well in the Book of Moses. In Alma 26:11-12, it talks about the great missionary Ammon. Ammon is found glorifying the Lord because of his success and strength and he says, "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 will rejoice in my God. 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 might miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever.

I love those verses because it teaches us two main principles. Humility and worshipping God. I love Ammon and the example he was in the Book of Mormon.

Also in Moses there is another great prophet named Enoch. This is after God reveals himself to Enoch and he says" Why is it that I have found favor in thy sight, and am but a lad, and all the people hate me; for I am slow of speech; wherefore am I thy servant?"

So this week focus on the things God has given you and show thanks. Because we are truly nothing without Him.

I love you all and hope you have a great rest of your week!

Love,
Elder David

Monday, September 23, 2013

You Alright?!?! (Said in an ugly Chav English accent)



Hey Everyone!

This week has been a great week! The sun has not been out for a while so that is taking some getting used to!

So about two weeks ago I was telling you about Lawrence! Well he got baptised yesterday and he just started crying as he came out of the water. He later described the moment to me, saying, "As soon as I came out of the water, I felt a tingling feeling go from my toes to the top of my head. I now know with a surety that I am a son of God. I am a son of God" It was such a sweet and spiritual moment. It was such a great day at church because it was a missionary sacrament meeting. I gave a talk about member missionary work and how we all have a responsibility to carry out this great and marvelous work. Sundays can sometimes be stressful as a misssionary in the London North Ward because we pretty much run the show haha. With a small ward with few calling, we end up doing everything. We found out yesterday morning that we needed to teach gospel doctrine class because the man who usually does it, is sick and was not going to be at church. We hold this ward together haha. But I love the ward so much. They brighten up my day.

Next week is transfers once again! I really do not know what is going to happen. I wish I just knew! The suspense it killing me!

This Saturday we have a baptism! It is going to be great! She is from Ghana Africa and came up to us and said that she was investigating the church in Ghana and just moved here. She then asked us if we could baptise her. We were so thrilled to hear those words come out of her mouth!! Those words are music to a missionaries ears!

Our mission has had an emphasis on serving one another and looking for service opportunities. As Elder Hutchins and I have been looking for ways we can serve random people, we have found so many opportunities to help the people around us. After we help them, they are more receptive to what we have to say and also people notice us and wonder who we are. It is exactly what Elder Uchtdorf said "Preach the Gospel at all times, and if necessary, use words. Be an example to those around you. Let your light so shine and use words if you have to.

I love you all and hope you have a great week! I will talk to you all next Tuesday!

Love,
Elder David

Monday, September 16, 2013

Good ol' London

Hello Everyone!!!

This week is the first week of London weather I have experienced. It has rained the last 4 days and has been pretty chilly. I really enjoy the weather if I am able to sit inside and watch a movie but as missionaries, that doesn't happen. We are outside whether it is rain or shine. It is actually fun coming back to the flat just soaked. It shows that we were working hard.

So I don't know if I have told you about Henrike yet. But Henrike is one of our investigators and she is from Berlin, Germany. She is the smartest person I have ever met and remembers literally everything that comes out of the human mouth. She uses her smarts for good by being a Doctor. She actually comes from a long line of Doctors. Last week she told us that her dad was the personal doctor for the last three popes...... crazy right?! She is so great and loves learning about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Her favorite part is that families can be together forever. Her husband passed away and so this means a great deal to her that she will see him again. So if you could just include her in your prayers that she will find her answer if she needs to get baptised that would be great.

I have heard that all of you back home thought I would have lost fairly quick in this Vegan Competition. But guess what, ye who have little faith?! I WON!! I lasted the longest (5 days) and am back to being normal. It really wasn't that hard. The hardest part is just not losing on accident.

But this morning we did something worse. The zone leaders came over to our flat for P-day and they brought some peppers. Not just any peppers, but Scotch Bonnet Peppers. Lets just say if you want to get a tiny microscopic understanding on how The Atonement felt, eat one of these peppers. My mouth, my nose, and my eyes were watering uncontrollably for a good hour.My insides rapidly began to melt as the pepper began to disintegrate all the organs it passed by while traveling to the pit of my stomach. Everyone did it together. Try to imagine 6 missionaries crying uncontrollably from a pepper they stupidly decided to eat. These peppers are a hundred times more spicy than the hottest wing at Buffalo Wild Wings. Never again will I ever have one of these. Never.

I love you all and hope that everything is going well for you at home. I read this scripture this last week and it really has helped me. This is a scripture that will help you understand how to be more successful in what ever you are trying to accomplish. It is in the Book of Mormon in 2 Nephi 32:9 saying "But behold, I say into you that ye must pray always, and not faint; that ye must not perform any thing unto the Lord save in the first place ye shall pray unto the Father in the name of Christ, that he will consecrate thy performance unto thee, that thy performance may be for the welfare of thy soul." Remember to pray always. God will help you and bless you. Just ask for those blessings. I know that these things are true and that our Heavenly Father knows us personally and that he just wants us to talk with him while offering up a "broken heart and a contrite spirit." Try to pray always this week. Pray when you wake up, when you are about to eat, when you are about to leave the house, when you go to bed and always have a prayer in your heart. You will see a difference in your life if you do so.

Again, have a fantastic week!

Love,
Elder David



Monday, September 9, 2013

Vegan Challenge!!!

Hello Everyone!

As you see the name of the subject, I am now a vegan. Everyone in our flat was complaining that we eat really bad food. So our solution was to eat healthier. We were all satisfied with that until Elder Hutchins threw out "I bet I could go Vegan longer than all of you" and so now we are all Vegans competing for who can do it the longest. Winner gets bragging rights and a 4 pound tie from everyone. So worth it!! Hahah Goodbye to all meat, milk, eggs, honey, and anything else that comes from an animal.

This week I have received emails from a lot of my friends and it is weird that they are all off to University. It is so cool to hear from them and of the experiences they are going through. I was thinking about that this week and how weird it was for me to leave home and just leave to come here on my mission. It has helped me so much to leave straight here so I could develop good habits before I go to University. Scripture study, prayer, service, and shopping for myself. I am so thankful for this Gospel and to be on a path that I know will lead me back to my Heavenly Father. I know that it is not easy in any way but it is worth it. Our life here on earth is so small compared to the rest of Eternity. How great will our reward be after this life, if we have done all that we were asked to do now. Keep pushing forward and trying to follow Jesus Christ's example. You will see the blessing in your life if we are exactly obedient to God's Commandments. Almost obedient = almost blessed! Just do it (as "Nike" says). And remember our Lord and Saviour always.

I love you all and hope you have a fantastic week!!

Elder David

Monday, September 2, 2013

The People of London

Hello Everyone!

This week has been really great! We are teaching some really great people and that is what I wanted to focus on this week. The people.

I never would have thought I could love people that I barely know. I did not think it was possible. When people would tell me "Love the people" I thought it was kind of weird but now I understand what they meant. When I am trying to invite people to come unto Christ by helping them receive the restored gospel, I begin to feel Gods love for them. I can honestly feel something within me change when I teach them about the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I have always taken for granted that I was born in this religion. I just thought it was irrelevant. I knew it was important but didn't fully understand until I got on my mission. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the only true church on this earth. It sounds bold, I know. And I do not mean to condemn any other religion because they all are great and have amazing intentions. But they do not have the full truth of what God would like us to do. With the Book of Mormon and the Bible together, we are able to fully understand our purpose here on earth. We know where we came from, why we are here, and where we are going. We know what we need to do here on earth so that we may live with god again. We know these things because of the Book of Mormon and the Bible. With out one of these sources we would be lost. I know that if we really want to find out if what I am saying is true, we must read the Book of Mormon and ask God if it is true. I know that these things are true because I have experienced it for myself and I invite you to do so if you have not already.

So anyways about the people I am teaching. First is a man named Jesus. He pronounces his name the same way as an American would say Jesus. HAHA not the Spanish way. Jesus smokes and did not come to church last Sunday... UH OH! Sounds funny right? He grew up in New York but is from Spain. I am convinced he used to be in the Mob in NY and my companion thinks so too. He just is a great guy but with a crazy past. He is searching for truth and loves meeting with us. Every time we see him he says that "We have changed his life forever." When hearing that it makes all the crappy moments go away. He offered the closing prayer the other day in our lesson and said "Dear God, Bless America that they may be able to kick Syria in the A** and show them who is boss, also I thank you for these boys who teach me. I am thankful for my life. I love you baby. Amen." It was so great.

Now Lawrence! So Lawrence is from some small tribe in Africa! He is about 50 and is on date to be baptised! Once every six weeks we do a work over with another missionary for a day. So I went to work with a different missionary named Elder Hein (The tall red headed one I also live with). When we were on this work over, we were waiting for a bus and decided to start talking to people. So I stopped this man and we started talking to him about the church and he said that his wife has been telling him to find our church and learn more about it. It was for sure a miracle. Our bus then pulled up and we took his number and called him that night to meet with him. Elder Hein and his companion have been teaching him ever since. I hav not seen Lawrence since that day I found him which was about a month ago until the other day. We were on another work over and it happened that Elder Hein was teaching Lawrence that day. So I was so excited! He has been asking about me everytime they have met with him and wanted to see me so it was a big surprise for him. So I walked up to him and said "Hello Lawrence It is great to see you" He looked confuse for a second, then just exploded with Joy and grabbed me to give me a big hug. It was so great! He said that this Gospel has changed his life and he thanks me for talking to him that one day. He is the sweetest man.

All these people I just love. They make this work so fun to do. I love doing what I am doing and seeing the direct impact it has on their lives! I love the people.

Elder David

 



Monday, August 26, 2013

Nothing Much This Week!

Hello everybody!

This last week has been really good but there are not many crazy stories other than this one man who asked us if "Jesus had a Penis...." It was the weirdest thing ever. Me and Elder Hutchins just laughed in his face and walked away. I really appreciate living in Parker, Colorado after seeing all these weirdos here in England.

We are really working on one of our investigators. Her name is Henrike and is from Germany. She is Buddhist but she is really starting to gain a testimony of the truthfulness of this message. She has come to church the last 3 weeks and we plan on setting a date for her to be baptised this week. If you could just pray for her that would be great. She needs this!!

Today is P-day of course and we went into Central London to go stand outside the theater that plays the Book of Mormon Musical!! People were asking for pictures and auto graphs. We were like famous!! I will attach a picture of it and of this funny sign we saw the other day!

I hope all of you have a great week and I will talk to you all soon!!

Love,

Elder David
 





Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Talan's Favorite Lady!

So this is Sister Rainsley... She is the sweetest old woman in our ward but just super crazy and loopy haha. She is also the one who tried to use the priesthood on her son.... So ya here she is.

Missionary Life

Hello again everybody!!
You are all probably sitting on pins and needles wondering where or if I was transfered..... The news is.... I am staying in London North with Elder Hutchins!! I am very happy about this because we have a lot of people I just really don't want to leave behind just yet. This week was really great but a very interesting thing happened...
So about 2 weeks ago we met a young lady named Maria from Romania. She was out for a walk with her daughter when we stopped her. She was very interested in finding a church and gave us her address and phone number and were to come over on that saturday. It was friday night when we called and tried to comfirm our appointment when we found out it was a fake number. So we were sad and decided not to try the address becuase it was probably fake as well. So fast forward a few days. We were walking up to the church to go complete a progress record when this crazy lady is yelling and chasing after us! As she drew closer to us we recognized it was Maria. She then began to rebuke us in her very broken up english!! She was mad that we didn't stop by her house and talk about the church. So we set up an appointment for later that day. We go to her dodgy house at 4 PM to find a family of 8!!! We were so thrilled and they all committed to baptism and said they could not wait for church on sunday! So we teach this family a couple of times before Sunday and then all the kids made it to church. The parents couldn't but we were so excited to have them there. Like I said this family is from Romania and people from there are crazy.. and loud.... so I babysat them during sacrament meeting. Elder Hutchins, Elder Hein, and I sang a song in sacrament and one of the daughters (who they said was retarded) started to scream and clap super loud after and the kids all joined in laughing. That whole hour felt like it lasted a whole day. They were so loud the entire time. So church ended and after they left the whole ward came to talk to us. They were warning us that the family might be Romany Gypsies. I had no idea what that even meant but then began to explain what that meant. Romany Gypsies are people who steal and cheat their way through society to get gain from others around them. They live off the government and teach their children from a young age how to be thieves. So Elder Hutchins and I were worried but tried not to pin them to that stereotype. We scheduled later that day to visit their home. This time we brought a guy from our ward who is Romanian (not a Gypsy though). As soon as we got there he knew they were Gypsies. He began to talk with them and within 5 minutes of us being in the house they asked if the church gives benefits and showed us paperwork that said they were "looking for work." We also figured out that the daughter who we thought was mentally not there, was faking it. She answered here phone and went in the other room speaking perfect English to one of her friends. And also we found out that they try to have as much kids possible to receive more benefits from the government. Sick people. So we left from the house and was very mad because they lied to us about being interested in the church but rather they were interested if they could steal money from the church. Here in London we meet some very interesting people everyday!

But on a happier note, Elder Hutchins are friends with one of the coaches of Arsenal!! He loves us and hooked us both up with new Arsenal Jerseys and shorts, a football, and two Arsenal mugs! He then said that since we are both staying in London that he will hook us up with tickets soon!! He is not a member but his Aunt is. He told us he isn't interested but he still recognizes we are servants of the Lord. He has us over for dinner every Sunday night and we share a message. One day he will accept the Gospel. I know it.

Here is our "Team Photo"
 


Monday, August 12, 2013

Greeting From London!

Hey everyone!

Goodness weeks just fly by when you work. Next week is transfers so I could be staying in London North or moving somewhere else. I will know by next Monday.

Every week I try to study a different topic and try to get as much out of it as I can. This past week I studied the Atonement.

I do not know how to even start talking about such a beautiful and deep topic. But I think I will just start by saying that our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ love you so much. Lets look at this from Heavenly Fathers perspective. He gave his Only Begotten Son to suffer all pains and afflictions for everyone that will and has ever lived. A pain that no one can even begin to comprehend. Christ's suffering was enough to make God tremble because of how much he went though. Christ bled from every pore. God knew that this was the only way we could return to live with him. Christ also understood this. Christ knew and loved us so much that he was willing to do so. God was not forcing him to do this. Christ made his own decision and allowed it to happen. But why did Christ do this? So we could all return to live with God. As we know "no unclean thing can enter the presence of God" meaning none of us would be able to live with God again. Christ fulfilled the demands of justice and took everyone's sins upon his own back. Giving us the GIFT of repentance. If we have faith in Jesus Christ then that faith should lead to action, and that action should be repentance. Imagine getting a gift for someone you loved and then when you handed them the gift, they handed it right back and said they did not like it and did not want it. This would destroy you. You thought they were going to love this and appreciate the gift you gave them. This is how the Savior feels. He wants us to accept him and his gift and to USE it. We view repentance sometimes as something that binds us rather than something that will set us free. It is a gift that can enable us to receive the greatest gift of all. Eternal life. We all have things we need to work on. Everyone has something they struggle with but as long as we try our best in following Christ and repenting daily, we will have the spirit in our lives to guide us in thought and in decision. I know that The Atonement is real and that burdens can be lifted off your shoulder. Repent in German is "Umkehr" meaning "to turn completely around." As we repent we commit to make changes in our lives so that we can move closer to God. I do not mean to sound preachy but rather am just excited to share this new meaning to what Christ did for us. I am so happy to be serving The Lord and bringing people the fullness of the everlasting gospel.

I love you all and miss you tremendously! Have a great!!

Elder David