Monday, December 15, 2014

Studying the Atonement and Saying Goodbyes

Family and friends,

This week went pretty well for me, I started off this week with an intercambio in Qurihue which is another sector in our zone. I was with Elder Aguilar and Elder Valle in a trio. It was pretty fun and I learned a lot. Every time I have an intercambio I try to learn something good from every missionary. Elder Aguilar has a year in the mission and knows English pretty well. He also can impersonate anybody or anything, it’s so funny. Elder Valle has 22 months in the mission and knows his bible, haha we "bible bashed" with 2 different people that day, it was pretty crazy. But it’s always fun to go on intercambios and experience new stuff.

We had our Christmas conference for missionaries this week that was pretty fun but it made me really homesick haha. It hasn’t really hit me that it is Christmas time because there is no snow here and it is a thousand degrees but with that Christmas Conference, all the feelings and remembrances came flooding back. We talked a lot about how Jesus Christ is the real gift during Christmas time. Sure it is really fun to exchange presents with family and friends during this time but we need to remember the true meaning of Christmas and why we celebrate it. I got to see a bunch of my friends from the CCM there which is always really fun and I also got my Christmas packages and letters from people. Thank you so much for everyone who sent me stuff:) I’m saving all of it until Christmas! They showed our movie that we made too, I guess it was funnier to us because we made it.... hahahaha but I thought it went well.

This week I have been studying the Atonement of Jesus Christ. It’s amazing that I can still learn and grow in my knowledge of something even though I have studied it a lot before. I have been studying it, but more than the fact that because of the Atonement we can receive a remission of our sins and we can be resurrected and live again.  I’m studying how through the Atonement we can receive help and comfort in our everyday lives. We can be strengthened and it helps us to understand why we pass through the hardships that we do. If we come to truly understand the Atonement, we come to know of God’s love for us, and His love for each and everyone one of us is something incredible. I don’t know everything about doctrine and the scriptures, that I’m still working on, but I can testify of the power of God’s love for us because I have felt its influence in my life and it has kept me going when I have been at the lowest points in my life. My invitation for all of you reading this is that you can try and discover a little more about the love that I know that God has for everyone one of you. You can experience it in many ways, scriptures, prayer, church, but I’m going to leave that up to you guys:) Also to remember the true meaning of Christmas.

About cambios today... .I am leaving from Catrihuala! I have had a good time here and learned more than is imaginable. I have had really good experiences and have grown over this short time. This week I have had to say goodbye to friends, members, converts, and investigators, and those of you who know me know that a few tears were shed hahaha always. The experience of being a missionary is amazing.  I am going to a place called Coronel! It is in the north of our mission and is on the coast next to the ocean! So I’m looking forward to seeing the beaches and water every day! I heard that I am going to eat a lot of fish and that it isn’t going to be that hot there so I’m looking forward to that as well. My companion is going to be Elder Knecht which I am very excited for because I heard that he is really funny and is a good guy. It’s going to be sad leaving Catrihuala but I’m ready. I’ll let you guys know how my first week is in Coronel next week! Geez Christmas is close.... Make sure to appreciate the snow because I sure am missing it here:)

Love, Elder Clay

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