Friday, December 20, 2013

"If success isn't there in the mission, sacrifice something."

Merry Christmas Ya'll!

Heyyy family!

Wow what a bummer with the Cowboys. I know Mack Brown is the one stepping down but I'm calling for Jerry Jones to step down... come on.. but that is good news for the Allen Eagles! Wooh state 2013! I feel super old that its already gonna be 3 years since I graduated from there, ohhhh gooodness. Glad to hear the fam will be almost completely united this week! I hope everyone cherishes the Christmas season!

It has been a very spiritual week this week, it started off with a great zone conference! We were instructed by president all about how to become the "messenger" God wants us to become while we are on His time. We were taught that obedience and sacrifice is what qualifies us for the grace that is received through the Atonement of Christ. It was very spiritual and I learned quite a bit. 
While pondering later on in personal study I found examples in the scriptures that taught me about true sacrifice and the blessings that come from it like Adam and Eve and Abraham, Job, and even Joseph Smith. Joseph Smith said that "a religion that does not require the sacrifice of all things, never has power sufficient to produce the faith necessary unto life and salvation.” If we are not sacrificing we are in our comfort zone, and the enabling power of the Atonement does not cover the comfort zone. I remember back in mission prep before the mission Brother Wright told us that if success isn't there in the mission, sacrifice something. That helped me a lot in Ipiales when the success just wasn't there. We had to sacrifice in order to let the Lord know we were willing to give it all to move forward His work. What a great lesson that our inspired mission president gave us!

We then saw the movie "The Rescue of Ephraim." Goodness gracious if you haven't seen that movie I suggest you do! Great example of sacrifice and obedience that all can learn from! That would be a great Eliason Christmas Family Activity!

As for the work here in Popayan, it sure is going along. We had 18 lessons with members this past week! They have been responding well to our "Christmas message" we have been giving to all of them this season. That the best gift you can give is a gift to Christ, don't let Him out of your Christmas" That is pretty much the campaign we are running here because we were told all the members kind of flake out during the Christmas season. NOT THIS ONE! haha. 

We had a few troubles with Andres this past week, he is still super excited but he wants to have his old girlfriend move in with him again. We taught him the Lord's stand on that subject and he will have to make the decision to follow his wishes or what the Lord wants for him. It's one of the hard parts about the mission seeing people so great who you have come to love choosing the world over the gospel but that is the greatness of God's plan..."... for behold, ye are free; ye are permitted to act for yourselves; for behold, God hath given unto you a knowledge and he hath made you free." (Helaman 14:30

However there is great news! Mabel the recent convert has been helping her 21 year old sister Ana progress! She started talking to her about the great change she has had while investigating the Church and finally sparked her interest. So she called us and told us to go and teach her! We taught a great lesson on the Restoration and it seemed to have answered a lot of her questions. at church the Relief Society had a testimony meeting and she said she really felt something strange inside her chest that felt like pure happiness (or... the spirit.) She came out of the room crying and I had no idea if that was good or bad haha, turned out good. 

We also had 7 other people at church this week that are pretty much new so that is exciting to see that we have a lot of people to be working with! It has been such a good time here in Popayan, there is always someone to teach every day and that is a missionarys dream aint' that right Codes?

I am looking forward to the Christmas call, I think it would be best on Saturday. I will call home (for just a sec) probably on Friday to set up the time and what not. Again, Christmas day or eve is IMPOSSIBLE to find anything open. So we'll talk then! 

I am still so happy as a missionary, it seems like I will always be a missionary haha. I am so happy and am so grateful to be so immersed in the Work of God! 

Talk to you Friday (for a sec), then for an hour on Saturday!

Elder Eliason

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