Tuesday, September 17, 2013
After the many testimonies which have been given of Him....
I´m gonna start this week´s email off on a more serious note. One aspect of the gospel that I have been dedicating a lot of study to lately is the concept of grace. Throughout my life, I always heard the phrase "His grace is sufficient" but I honestly didn´t really understood what it meant. After coming on a mission, grace is a principle that I have to exercise and learn more about everyday in order to function as a missionary. In the Bible Dictionary, it says, "The main idea of the word is divine means of help or strength, given through the bounteous mercy and love of Jesus Christ...It is likewise through the grace of the Lord that individuals, through faith in the Atonement of Jesus Christ and repentance of their sins, receive strength and assistance to do good works that they otherwise would not be able to maintain if left to their own means. This grace is an enabling power that allows men and women to lay hold on eternal life and exaltation after they have expended their own best efforts...grace cannot suffice without total effort on the part of the recipient. Hence the explanation, “It is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do” (2 Ne. 25:23)." (boldness of words added by me). In my life lately, I have had to turn to the Lord every 5 seconds it seems for help, understanding, support, and lots of other things. Through many different means, I have come to realize that Jesus Christ is mi Salvador. Yo sé que mediante Jesucristo, I can become the missionary He needs me to be, I can become clean oltra vez, I can return to live with my Heavenly Parents after this life, y I can be a part of many miracles in my life and in the life of others. I know that if I do the best and try to be the best I can, the Lord WILL make the difference. I have come to know that His grace truly is sufficient. No matter how little our best is, he CAN and WILL fill the gap. When we even exercise simply a twig of faith and effort, the Lord will recognize it. I know that He will never leave us helpless. I know with all the itty-bitty fibers of my being and with all the pumpings of my blood that He will help us through every time on our life (good or bad) if we turn to Him. And I know that sometimes having faith is hard. Stepping into the unknown and trusting/hoping someone will guide you through the dark is scary. But with everything in life, the first few steps are the hardest, but before you know it you´re strollin along with no problem. I know that God NEVER shuts us out...we are the ones that shut Him out. After all He has done for us, after all His son has done for us, we (in our stupidly frail pridefully human selfs) turn our backs on Him. He wants to bless us in our lives; in fact, He begs us to let Him bless us. The ONLY thing we have to do is follow Him, remember Him, turn to Him. In all honesty, we have the easy end of the deal if you think about it (be good, get a cookie). I´m so grateful for the Savior´s gift of grace in my life. He has filled my many gaps countless times, and I would be nothing without Him. I´m so grateful for His perfect example of what I need to be in this life. I´m so grateful that I have Him to turn to everyday of my life. And I´m so beyond grateful that I have this opportunity to be His missionary for the next year and 17 months. I know He loves us. "And now, after the many testimonies which have been given of Him, this is the testimony, last of all, which we give of Him: That He lives!" (Doctrine and covenants 76:22).
Now onto the happenings of this past week here in the CCM...
This past week, as you all know, was 9-11. Being out of the country for that day was a bit weird... I really wished I had an American flag or something. It´s hard to believe that that was 12 years ago! All day I had songs like "God bless America" and the "Star-spangled Banner" stuck in my head. I even made our district do the pledge that morning (you´re welcome Unlce Sam). Being in Mexico has really made me realize how blessed I am to be in an American. And I know people complain about bad stuff going on governmently in the US, but honestly, even with the bad stuff, we´ve got it made! I think that instead of focusing on the bad, we should acknowledge all the blessings and good that the good ´ole USA has to offer. I mean think about it... we have TONS of freedoms, we have the cooliest national anthem, we have the most kick-butt "becoming a nation" story, we have pretty sweet founding fathers, we are a nation built on religious freedom, AND we have clean water everywhere! Huzzah for America!
Also in honor of America, the boys (the Elders in my district) all sang country songs all day. It was soo great! I didn´t realize how much I missed it til they serenaded me haha.
Last week in the middle of the night, I apparently started spouting out perfectly fluent spanish in my sleep. I have no rememberance of this occuring, and I think it´s pretty sweet! But my question is.. WHERE IS THAT WHEN I´M AWAKE?? Goodness, I gotta work on transfering it over I guess.
Hermana Nelson got a huge package full of delicious treatsies from her Momma this week. We all attacked that box like a bunch of crazy monkeys after the last banana! Hey, don´t judge. Homemade is the best, and it happens to be it short supply here.
Oh! Friday was Friday the 13th..dun dunn duunnn! But don´t worry, nothin happened that I can recall..except we saw a cat! But it was white instead of black, so we took that as good luck!
Here at the CCM, we have to drink water from those little water filter cooler things (ya know..like the ones people stand around at work and gossip at). Anywho, so the boys have been stacking empty ones behind the door, so that when we open it they all topple down. So the other day, us Hermanas decided to get them back. While they were at a meeting, we stacked up about 24 big empty jug things behind the door, and then we covered all the windows and made sure that that was their only way of entrance back into the room. A few mintes later, they came barging in and BOOM BANG POW DONG. All of the jugs came tumbling down (apparently you could hear the ruckus from outside the building and across the street). Oh sweet revenge. Disclaimer: Don´t try that at home boys and girls. Forgive and forget. Don´t do drugs. Stay in school.
On Saturday night was our big Mexican fiesta for their independence day. It was crazy and loud and there were dancing latinos and sombreros and screaming and fireworks and "viva mexico´s"and rolling r´s and tons of Mexican pride in that little gym. My head and ears were ringing for what felt like hours afterwards, but it was really fun and interesting to see their version of the 4th of July. I love their traditional dresses that twirl all around and the dances that they performed for us. Let me tell y´all somethin, Mexicans have LOTS of pride. I wish more Americans were proud to be American. I feel like that´s a dying thing, which makes me really sad. I heart America with all mi corazón.
Random side story: I literally almost got run over by a zamboni floor buffer guy the other morning. I was walking past him, and then all of a sudden he lost control of the bluffer thingy and I literally had to jump out off the way. It made me laugh so hard, cause it reminded me of a time when all us Page chitlins were still youngins and we were at Food Lion one night with Mom and we were running from "THE BUFFER"...you guys remember that? And we were pushing Tory around in a Nascar buggie? Oh goodness...good times :)
And last but certainly not least, as I said in the quick email from yesterday, I am now leaving for Chile the day after tomorrow instead of in a week. Yes, I was just as suprised as you all probably are. I already explained the "why" and all that nonsense yesterday (and I assume Mom posted it to my blog), so I won´t repeat myself. I go in and out of shock/denial multiple times a day. It just doesn´t feel real yet, ya know? And I love the CCM a lot, but this isn´t a real mission. I haven´t experienced anything yet. It kinda just blows my mind that I´ll be in Chile on Friday.. I was mentally prepared for a whole other week, so packing and laundry and all the details and stuff will be taking over my life tomorrow. I´m nervous out my pants but also I´m really excited and I know that now I´ll just get to jump into the work of salvation that much faster, but part of me is really sad to leave my CCM family. These Elders and Hermanas truly are my family and I´m gonna miss them lots after I leave. But I´m so excited to see and talk to them after our missions and have a reunion like Alma and the sons of Mosiah after their missions. (Alma 17:2-3....Look it up). We will all be so growed up in the Lord by then :)
Welp, I hope you all have a wonderful day..or night (depending on when you read this).
My challenge for y´all this week is to forget yourselves, and go to work. That´s something I learned again this week. The Lord has need of all of his servants in the hastening of His work. Enlist in His army everyday of your life. (He gives great benefits to veterans ;)).
I´ll send another email Thursday before I´m off. Until then, God speed.
God be with you til we meet again.
Love always and always,
Hermana Abigail Page
Posted by 7 Pages Long (Steve & Lisa)
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