August 28, 2016
Hello my friends and family!
Believe it or not, today I have more time than I thought I would have! That doesn't mean that my letter will be super long but I have some time to explain some of the changes that have happened and how AWESOME it is to serve in Korea. First of all, my new area is sick. It is not exactly Seoul, it is like a suburb of Seoul, but really not because it is still a huge part of the city. The people are very friendly and kind and we meet a ton of people on the street who know us and who like us and who want to meet with us. My companion is going home in 4 weeks but he is doing well, still working super hard. Anyway, these have been some of the best times and most busy times on my mission.
As I pondered what to share with all of you today I have pondered some experiences in my life that have added to my testimony. Most of you probably know what a testimony is. It is a belief or sometimes a knowledge based on experience that you can share with others to help them find faith or hope. So I wanted to bare a little bit of my testimony about some things that I know through my own experience.
I know that we have a loving Heavenly Father. I don't know everything about him, I have never seen him, and I don't perfectly understand why he does everything that he does, but I know that he is there. I know this partly because of some physical evidences I have seen and studies that I have done, but the biggest reason is because of the feelings I have felt when I have done the things God has asked me to do. When I pray, read the scriptures, serve others, and follow other commandments I am happy. When I pray, I feel at peace, which is promised in the scriptures, and I know that I have been directed on decisions that I have had to make and I know that I have received answers to questions that I have asked. I love my Father in Heaven and I know that He loves me and all of us, even though I have never seen Him.
I know that Heavenly Father provides us guidance for our trials and experiences in life. He has given us scriptures, prayer, prophets, leaders, parents, and other tools to teach us and guide us through our hard times. I have been a grateful recipient of that guidance through many times in my life that I have needed it and there have been many times that I have found answers that I didn't even know that I was looking for.
Finally, I know that Jesus Christ came to this earth as the son of God and died for us so that we can all one day be clean from sin, guilt, and pain. Sometimes people look at missionaries as great rocks of faith assuming that they don't have doubt or questions or that because they wear a name tag they are blessed with perfect knowledge. As much as I sometimes wish this was the case it isn't. I have always had questions, always had doubts, and always have had things that I don't understand. But I am grateful for the experiences that God has given me to learn some things and to be able to believe some things. I invite all of you to do the same things that I have done, if and when you have questions or you need guidance. Religion is not magic. It is not something that people make up in their minds. Anyone can gain a testimony if they are willing to act and work for it. I hope all of you seek that testimony, because the value of a testimony, the hope and direction that it brings, is more valuable than any other gift that we can obtain.
I love you all,