20 December 2010

Life seems to have its own agenda for us all I guess.  I think our battle will always be with patience throughout life.  The Lord blesses us when we least expect it in ways that we never expected when we are faithful.  I wanted to share a story today, so…I think I’m going to go a little overtime.

This week I had some experiences that have made me think and pray and ponder things I never have before.  I think one of the most important abilities we have is our ability to think, reason, and discover.  At the same time it can be our greatest enemy.  Anyway, the week was kind of just falling into sequence.  Not many plans had been made, no baptisms were set and we were just praying to find someone.  I wanted to clarify one thing in this email as well because I realize this week how many other people read these emails and I want it to be understandable for everyone.  Baptism is such a wired word for people to think about.  It’s a big step and our purpose as missionaries is to baptize.  I’m afraid, though, that the true reason behind the urgency of baptism is unknown to people who aren’t Christian.  So, I want to make sure that everyone knows that we don’t stress baptism to broaden our influence in the world, to expand our church to be the biggest, or to gain the income that comes from faithful members.  We baptize because it was taught by Christ that unless you are born of water, you cannot enter into the Kingdom of God.  We stress it because it is the first covenant we make with our Father in Heaven and after making this covenant God blesses us with opportunities in life we would not have otherwise received.  Baptism is a door to eternal life, to other covenants such as those that seal us as a family forever.  It allows us to become clean, pure, perfect from all our previous sins as well as gives us the opportunity to renew this covenant every Sunday with the Sacrament which Christ taught at the Last Supper.  That is why we stress baptism so much and set the goals that we do to baptize.  We want everyone to have the opportunity to have the happiness we have found in it.
That being said, this week my companion and I were worried because we didn’t have anyone to baptize this entire month. It hurts to see so many people who could use a divine purpose or any purpose and to know that we carry a message that will help them.  Well, we did the only thing we knew how to do.  We prayed.  The next day we went to visit the Balbi family, of whom 3 had been baptized and the daughter had decided she didn’t want to.  As we visited with them, the daughter, Agustina, said, “I would like to be baptized.”  We couldn’t believe it because she had denied our invitations so many times.  We had the opportunity to baptize her this Saturday and the most touching part came when her father stood in front of the congregation and said, “I feel so at peace.  We are now protected.”  As a family they took a step and showed their faith and now are on their way, a year from now to be sealed as a family in the temple, to be protected by God in all things if they remain faithful.. My thoughts were lifted Saturday night to the possibilities that we have as the children of God to feel a little part of heaven here on Earth in our families….
I want to thank everyone for the words they have sent of comfort and encouragement.  I have been blessed to know all of you.  I want to wish you all holiday seasons that are happy, protected and embraced with the love of Christ, as we remember him.
Elder Davies Three

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