Monday, March 30, 2015

This week has been another amazing week! And I say that because it has been a week of learning how to become more like the savior, that's our whole purpose in life, 3 Nephi 12:48.  And we can become perfect by following the example of the Savior and do as he has commanded us to do.

Everyone thinks that commandments are restrictions or suggestions.  No and no, they are laws that help us to become more like Christ and to build our faith, and in turn if we follow them we will be blessed, that's a promise DC 82:8-10, probably one of my all time favorites now, and they are not suggestions, they are commandments ha-ha, we need to abide by them in order to receive the greatest gift of all, Eternal life DC 14:7.  Yeah, they are hard, but the Lord ALWAYS provides a way for us to accomplish what he has asked 1 Nephi 3:7. I like what Sister Verdejo put in her email, where everything starts with prayer and scripture study! It is very true, if we are not putting in the effort to change our lives to become more in harmony with the Lord's teachings, then we are not going to receive those blessings! Don't complain if the blessings are not coming if you are not doing the things that we have been asked to do, and if you are doing everything, Endure! Ha-ha, this week has been amazing.

This week I learned a lot about how I can transfer all of this dedication and diligence for after all of this, I feel bad that I didn'€™t do more to help for my mission.  Laziness is probably my biggest pet peeve now, which includes just sitting down and watching TV or playing video games.  Before this week I did no€™t feel that way, but there's a change happening in me that I cannot describe and it i€™s the most amazing thing that has ever happened to me, and it is all because of my Savior.   Without him, this mission would be a waste, reading the scriptures would do nothing, praying would be pointless and living would make no sense, but because I know that we do have a savior and he lives, I can change.  The only way to do that is through his everlasting atonement.  he has given us a blessing that we will always be in debt for, we can never ever feel entitled for anything because Jesus Christ did something FOR US that we can never repay, and all he asks for is a broken heart and a contrite spirit and to follow his example.

Sorry there's a lot of references of scriptures, but if you really want to know what they say, then read them! We had two more baptisms this week and I got to baptize one of them which was great! It's all because of the atonement of Jesus Christ! If you are ever struggling he is there waiting for you with his arms open, with mercy and all we need to do is repent! Alma 5:33, find out what repentance means to you and then look it up in the topical guide! Repentance is the best gift! And the Holy Ghost, and all the others gifts... but it's a blessing to be able to repent, so do it!

Love you all, have fun and remember anything is possible through Christ! That's the reason why we have missionaries and that we are here on earth, because of Christ!

 Andrew loves the mountains

Monday, March 23, 2015

Hey everyone.
This week has been really interesting and fun! There have been a lot of really
wacky things that have happened.  We met a lady who speaks English and
invited us to come over so that her students can learn about something
meaningful.  She's only 27 and apparently going to America soon.  It
was my first lesson ever in English so it was really weird to try and do it
that way.  It was really good and I felt the spirit super strongly.
It kind of got me down that I do the exact same thing in Armenian and nothing
happens.  I was thinking about if it was a mistake that I had been sent
here because it was so much better in English, but I realized that's why it's
so important for me to stay and that's why I was called here.  Really hard
to explain over email but it just helped me realize I need to master this
language in every way so that I can have that same conviction! I have had a lot
of humbling experiences lately personally, which have already impacted
me.  It's super important to be receptive to the spirit and to be humble
enough to receive correction and have enough faith to actually act upon
it.  It's a really big blessing to be here and I love it.  We had two
baptisms fall through which sucked.  But, one of the elders here said that
maybe it's God just telling us they need a little more time to prepare, which
brings up the attribute of patience.  Patience is the best. You can learn
so much from it if you are open to it.  It's been a super big blessing
here in this mission and in my life.  I read a scripture a couple days ago
that has really stuck with me, Alma 60:36 36 Behold, I am
Moroni, your chief captain. I seek not for power, but to pull it
down. I seek not for honor of the world, but for the glory of my God,
and the freedom and welfare of my country. And thus I close mine epistle.

As long as we are doing everything for the Glory of God, everything will work out.  It's an amazing attribute to have, to be humble enough to say, I know that I am
nothing in the site of God's eyes and everything that I can do is a blessing
from him, and I know that if I call on his name in Faith he will help me grow
my faith and help others grow there's.  Another quick scripture that was
insane, DC 1:21 says that the commandments are given to us to grow our faith.
 Anyway, hope all of you are having an awesome time and praying for
spiritual gifts and Christ like attributes, but remember we have to do our part
first and then we can ask! DC 9... love you all, thank you for all of your

 Armenia - Vanadzor

Monday, March 16, 2015

Well, this week was a pretty solid week.  We did a lot to help prepare our investigators for baptism.  We baptized a tat this week which was probably one of the most entertaining and awesome experiences.  You would never think an 85 year old woman would be so energetic to get into the water and get dunked.  We did not have a lot show up to church this week.  We planned on about 10 being there and only 1 was, but, now she can be baptized this week! 

It is really important to be obedient in this life.  It's a super big blessing that God has given us and he has given us the best gift of all, agency.  He gives us the ability to choose everything for ourselves and come to know the truth for ourselves and accept his will.  In DC 130:20-21, it says that all blessings are predicated by the law, which means that our blessings are already there and God is just waiting to give us them, all we need to do is obey his law and do the things that we have been taught to do and we'll receive them.  They are always in God's time, but what's wrong with that? It means that much more when you know that you have endured and been patient and have done everything asked and then he just showers blessings on you.  I also found a scripture that will be one of my favorites forever, DC59:23  23 But learn that he who doeth the works of righteousness shall receive his reward, even peace in this world, and eternal life in the world to come.  
I just like how it says he will find peace in this life as well as the world to come, eternal life.  It all depends on what we do.  We all have the ability to be amazing in this life and build our mansions in heaven by the things we do in this life.  It's been super fun to see the change in me and my companion when we try to focus on just being better people.  This gospel is everything to me, and to my companion, and to these people here.  God blesses everyone so much, it's a blessing to know of the gospel and to live it.  We had a district meeting last week that really stuck out to me because our district leader talked a lot about giving thanks to the Lord, for anything.  He also said that there is a common theme that happens to people who give thanks to the Lord, Alma48:  11 And Moroni was a strong and a mighty man; he was a man of a perfect understanding; yea, a man that did not delight in bloodshed; a man whose soul did joy in the liberty and the freedom of his country, and his brethren from bondage and slavery;
 12 Yea, a man whose heart did swell with thanksgiving to his God, for the many privileges and blessings which he bestowed upon his people; a man who did labor exceedingly for the welfare and safety of his people.
17 Yea, verily, verily I say unto you, if all men had been, and were, and ever would be, like unto Moroni, behold,the very powers of hell would have been shaken forever;yea, the devil would never have power over the hearts of the children of men.

I really do know that if we are all giving thanks constantly to God for the tender mercies we have, we will receive more, because we acknowledge that everything good is from God.  Love you all and hope you have an amazing week! Keep on praying and never give up!

Monday, March 9, 2015

This week was pretty crazy.  Did a couple splits and had some fun experiences.  This week we had another two baptisms and the work is flying right now.  We had a couple bumps in the road with some of our investigators not being ready, but everything will be fine.  This week has been really good for me.  I studied a lot of Christ like attributes again and one thing that really stuck out to me was a quote from President Monson that says that often times we forget to use the heavenly virtue of patience.  I am probably one of the most impatient people out there but it stuck out to me because it talks about how everything is on God's time table and not everything is going to be perfect, but the Lord is watching over us and will give substance in our time of need.  

This week me and my companion have done tons of work and its been super fun.  When I say work, I mean teaching.  But, on my split up in Alaverdi I got to do my first service which was awesome.  This letter is going to be all over the place but that's okay.  It's super important for everyone to rely on the spirit.  That is one of the hardest things to recognize for me.  But, i know that if we are doing the things that God has asked us to do, he will help us in our times of need.  Also don't get sick, God didn't send us down here to get sick. One of my favorite things somebody told me yesterday.  Because, I'm sick again.... but, everything will be okay.  Be patient! main point to this letter.  It really is a gift and I have seen the blessings that come from it!
Love you all.
This is Alverdi - not my area, but super cool!