Good morning everyone! This week has been another great week. It's now official, I'm leaving for Mexico in less than two weeks! It was so weird traveling into Salt Lake on Monday to sign my visa and going down town! I should have my travel plans here tomorrow. There are 5 of us traveling to Leon, and I'm am so excited to go and serve the people.
The spanish is coming along little by little. With fasting and prayer the Lord has helped me to better understand conversation. I know it's going to be difficult once I get to Mexico to even understand what's going on, so this next week I'm really going to push myself as hard as I can.
Yesterday we had a great talk from Elder Carlson of the Seventy and he talked about how there are three types of people in this world: We have the sheep, the wolves and the shepherds. We as missionaries are the shepherds going to fnd those lost sheep, there are wolves all around us trying to tear down this gospel and make sure that it is not heard throughout the world. This time in which we are in, never has Satan had such an influence on the world, but at the same time never has the Holy Ghost had such a presence on the earth. People are very interested in knowing more about are Church and they are being prepared at this time to hear the restored gospel.
I heard a great conversion story from one of the Elders in our zone and I was simply amazed by this. When he was thirteen years old, he had been studying diligently from the bible. He one day went into his pastor and told him this Bible cannot be the only book, "there has to be more, I know it!" he told him. The pastor then told him that he needed to continue to read the Bible and he would find the truth that the Bible is the only true book on the earth. He went about his life for the next two years trying to find the truth but that same impression came to him telling him that there was more than this book. He returned to his pastors and told him the same thoughts, about how he knew there was more then the Bible. The pastor took offense to his comments this time and told him that he was a complete fool and he was to leave his office immediately. He said he was pretty hurt by this. When he returned home he told his mother that he had been "fired" from the -------- church. He kept searching and searching for something more in his life. That same year he was watching a cartoon - one that is more mature You've probably heard of it, it's called South Park. It's made by directors who love to make fun of the Church and teachings by making fun of it in some of their shows. This episode he was watching them make fun of the Book of Mormon. He told me right when he heard the words "Book of Mormon" something touched his heart. He went on his computer to search for this book. He came to the LDS website where he read all about it and how it was another testament of Jesus Christ. He requested a book and two days later the missionaries were at his door. He was baptized three weeks later. He said it was like coming home after a long long vacation. He has never had so much peace and love in his life since he joined the church. He then went on to baptize his sister and is now going to serve a Spanish speaking mission. He was a sheep that was found by our shepherd, Jesus Christ, and He was calling out to him, He had His arm fully extended for this Elder and was preparing him to hear the gospel as a young teenager.
I have a testimony of Jesus Christ! He is my Savior, and the Light of the world. His light will never be burned out or dimmed. He took upon Himself the sins of everyone who has lived or will live on this earth. He did this in the Garden of Gethsemane so that we can return to live with our Father in Heaven. He is our advocate above and pleads for our case to the Father. He is the shepherd to his sheep and he is constantly there to comfort us, protect us, and call out to us when we are lost. I love my Savior and I'm so grateful for what He has done for me in my life! Through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we can become clean and pure. Any trial or difficulty we may think is too hard to bare, we can always turn to the Redeemer and he will make our burdens light.
Have a great week!
Love, Elder Tanner Aiken