Monday, March 30, 2015

March 30, 2015

Loved Ones,

We saw many miracles this week! It was such an incredible week, I don't have nearly enough time to tell you a fraction of it, but I will mention an experience:

Humbling Power:
Elder Nebeker and I have been working tirelessly in this area. We cover many, many people and we are always on the run from one appointment to the next. We are very blessed to have been led to many people who are open to the gospel, and we have some really excellent investigators. 6 of them came to Church yesterday! Which is really good. It was a great turnout, and they each seemed to really enjoy it.
In addition to that, there is this great story:
There is a man here named David Boyd, who is what missionaries call an "eternigator", which means someone that is always investigating but never decides to get baptized. He is married to an active member and comes to Church almost every Sunday with her. Elder Nebeker and I have taught him once, but he wasn't very interested to progressing towards baptism. He has been taught for years. Many, many missionaries have taught him and tried to baptize him, but he was not ready for some unknown reason.
Well, since he seemed uninterested Elder Nebeker and I had been focusing our efforts elsewhere. Until, yesterday at Church when his wife came up to us and said, "My husband really needs to talk to you".. We were a little nervous, and not sure what he was going to say. He came up to me after Sacrament Meeting with tears in his eyes (I could tell he had been crying during the meeting), he said, "You need to come over this week. It's good! It's really good!". So, we set up a time for Wednesday night.
A few minutes later Sister Boyd spilled the beans and told us with tears in her eyes as well, "David has decided to get baptized!"

We had nothing to do with his conversion, we weren't even around. However, the Lord did all the work (as with any and all convert baptisms).
The Lord has shown me this time and time again. He always rewards us, but it is never how we expected. That is how he keeps us humble, and keeps us from thinking that we accomplished it by ourselves.

David Boyd will be baptized next week, and then we have many baptisms coming up after that! The Spirit of the Lord is being poured out here in Texas, and the floodgates are opening!

* * * * * * * * * * * * * 
Easter is the time that we celebrate the Resurrection of our Redeemer. The greatest miracle ever performed on earth. It goes beyond what we can even comprehend. However, I would like to share my testimony of the Atonement and Resurrection of the Only Begotten and what it truly means...

Let's begin with this question, "What if there was no Resurrection?"

To some, that may not mean much, but that is only because of their ignorance.
 "...the fall came by reason of transgression; and because man became fallen they were cut off from the presence of the Lord...this flesh must have laid down to rot and to crumble to its mother earth, to rise no more... if the flesh should rise no more our spirits must become subject to that angel who fell from before the presence of the Eternal God, and became the devil, to rise no more. And our spirits must have become like unto him, and we become devils, angels to a devil, to be shut out from the presence of out God, and to remain with the father of lies, in misery..." (2 Nephi 9:6-9)

Not only is there no salvation without the Resurrection, but that exact contrary, we would all be damned.
That is crucial to understand.

Here is the miracle:
The Savior "gained the victory over death" and "breaketh the bands of death" (Mosiah 15:8). Thus, "all shall rise from the dead and stand before God" (Alma 11:41), also, "the spirit and the body shall be reunited again in its perfect form" (Alma 11:43). The Resurrection is an unconditional gift to all of God's children, everyone, "all, both old and young, both bond and free, both male and female, both the wicked and the righteous; and even there shall not so much as a hair of their heads be lost"(Alma 11:44). The Resurrection is permanent to all, once Resurrected "they can die no more; their spirits uniting with their bodies, never to be divided" (Alma 11:45)

We see what would happen without the Resurrection, "But there is a resurrection, therefore the grave hath no victory, and the sting of death is swallowed up in Christ." (Mosiah 16:8)

Because of all this, we can have true hope. Hope that can never be diminished or shaken. True hope is "hope through the atonement of Christ and the power of his resurrection, to be raised unto life eternal" (Moroni 7:41). We may have hope for Eternal Life, only because of Christ. Moroni explains that we can have "hope for a better world" (Ether 12:4), because Christ has "prepared a house for man, yea, even among the mansions of thy Father, in which man might have a more excellent hope"(Ether 12:32)

We will each be reunited with our bodies, in a perfect condition. We can each have a hope of everlasting life with our God, and our families. All this is because of Christ, and his glorious Resurrection!
* * * * * * * * * * * * * *

This week's assignment:
-Listen to the words of the prophets
-Take notes
-Share with me what you learned

I love y'all!
Love, Elder Giles

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