Saturday, October 8, 2011
Elder Matthew Pages Last letter....hope you have a tissue!
It is a funny thing as a parent of a missionary. They leave home for two years and you are sad and happy at the same time. You miss them but know that what lies ahead for them is so worth the small sacrifice of time that you are apart. And then when it is time for them to come home, you feel the same thing all over again, happy and sad at the same time. You want them home but at the same time you miss all the blessings that have been coming over the last two years that they have been gone. What a wonderful experience it continues to be for me as a missionary mom, to have had two come home from serving the Lord, one still serving and more to go, and the blessing of loving so many more who have come to us from all over to serve us here in NC. I LOVE MISSIONARIES! The blessings are endless!!!! I am so greatful for a loving Heavenly Father who knows what we need so much more than we do and gives us opportunities to serve and sacrifice for others that they too maybe able to receive all that He hath. This gospel is true and for it I am so thankful.
I never thought that I would be sitting down to write my last letter to you all. It still doesn't seem like I'm going home yet. The fact that I will be seeing you all next week still hasn't hit me :)
This last week was good. Conference was really good. It was so powerful & I really enjoyed priesthood session. I don't know who the speaker was because we only had audio in Willcox because the satelite wasn't working. He spoke about returned missionaries I felt that that talk was just for me & it was exactly what I needed to hear.
Also earlier that week I had the opportunity to go to the temple for the last time. It was a really sweet experience for me. I felt so much peace inside & as I sat in the Celestial Room I had a lot of time to reflect. I just thought back on the past two years. I prayed to feel that confirmation that my service was acceptable before the Lord. I felt peace, but not really the feeling I was looking for. I felt a little worried, but then realized I probably wouldn't feel it because I'm not done. :) I will work hard this last week. The temple is such a blessing I pray I will always strive to stay worthy to go.
I was sick on Sunday so I stayed @ the Bushman's & Elder Stringer went out with a member to visit people and attend conference with our investigators. It was just a 24 hour bug, but it wasn't fun. I'm fine now.
Well, other than not much for now. Anything I forgot to tell you all I will just cover it in our extremely long talks that I'm sure we will have :) It will be weird not to be looking forward to checking the mail like I have for the past 2 years.:)
I have loved the Bushmans alot. :) They are so nice and they are a family I would love to keep in touch with. :)
Elder Stringer is great as well. He's a solid missionary & I have no doubts about him taking the area. He will do great things.
In my last words to you all as a missionary in the field, I want to share my testimony. I know that God is so mindful and loving as our Father. He has a plan that is perfect and for our eternal happiness-through Jesus Christ this is possible. He is our Savior. I have felt despair and doubt from sin and mistakes. I've felt I couldn't go another day with the pain and burden. As I go to the Savior I receive peace and hope that all is not lost. We can be clean. We can be like Him and through applying His Doctrine we can know Him. When I stumble and fall and desperately reach out to Him and find that He was already there waiting, patient, reaching desperately for me too. :)
I have so many weaknesses and faults, but through Christ He makes my small efforts miraculous. I know that I have been called by Him to serve. I know I have been a small part in his Plan and that I was sent to Arizona to reach and touch lives. I have been simply the tool. I love the people here. They will always have a place in my heart. :)
I know that Joesph Smith was a prophet that restored the fulness of Christ Gospel. I have shared Joseph's account hundreds of times and I feel the spirit testify every time. It is true. He saw God and Jesus Christ. Through Priesthood Authority saving ordinances like baptism, can now be performed for our salvation. Our family can be eternal as we live the doctrines of the Gospel.:)
The Book of Mormon is scripture. I know it is true! I have read it many times and I find peace and strength from its words. I have prayed about the book and know it is from God. It contains power of testimonies of prophets of the Savior Jesus Christ. Through that book anyone may gain a testimony of this work. I've seen it!
The spirit testifies of these things and I pray I can live worthy of these blessings of knowledge. Not only can I have a testimony of them, but that I may be converted and act according to them.
I am a missionary of Jesus Christ! I am called of God! My authority is above that of the kings of the earth! By revelation I have been selected as a personal representative of the Lord Jesus Christ! He is my Master and He has chosen me to represent Him! To stand in His place, to say and do what He himself would say and do if He personally were ministering to the very people to whom He has sent me! My voice is His voice, and my acts are His acts, My words are His words and my doctrine is His doctrine. My commission is to do what He wants done. To say what He wants said. To be a living modern witness in word and deed of the divinity of His great and marvelous latter-day work! HOW GREAT IS MY CALLING!!!!!
I love my Savior and pray I may always be worthy to be called His servant. His representative. His missionary. His Friend! :)
I love you all so much! Thank you for your countless letters, packages, messages, and prayers. They helped me more than you know! I can't wait to see you all soon and give you all big hugs! :) Have a great week!!!
See you next week!
Your Son & Missionary,
Elder Matthew Page
Posted by 7 Pages Long (Steve & Lisa)
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