So this last week was a rough one, but instead of telling you why it was so rough I am going to tell you what I learned from it, because I think this is something we often forget to do when we go through such hard times in our lives.
Many times it is a temptation and from the natural man inside us to ask " Why me?" when faced with adversity in our lives. The worst of things can happen to the best kind of people in this world. Some are able to handle it better then others, and some just do not know what to do, or why or what purpose contains in such calamity. In our relationship to our Savior Jesus Christ who knows all of our pains, weaknesses, and strengths, we should ask him, " What can I learn from this?". This is the reason why we face such challenges in our lives, is to learn from our experiences, and to gain experience in this life that we can take with us into the next. That is why a knowledge of this Gospel is so important to us in our lives, because it is the only thing we can take with us after we leave this mortal world. Everything that happens to us in this life is for our good and our experience (D&C 122:7) God knows us better then anybody else, and he will not give us anything that we cannot handle in this life. Sometimes, believe it or not we are given these hardships, challenges, and trails in our life from God to be tested of our Faith, and to be Humbled. ( Mosiah 23:21)
In the hardest trials, and adversity in our lives we need to always remember the Lord, our Savior and Redeemer Jesus Christ, and his Atonement. Since he has felt all the pain, sorrow, and tears, he knows it for himself and he has compassion on those that have to go through some of those things. But we must remember to humble ourselves and to think how completely helpless, and nothing compared to his Glory we are. (Mosiah 4:11) We are absolutely nothing with out Him in our lives. Absolutely nothing... and yet we still tend to forget Him, and all that He has done for us. I find this very offensive. After everything Jesus Christ did for the entire world, and some chose to continue to reject and ignore him, well they will be brought to judgement at the last day. This is why missionary work is so important, so that we can help people to come to know the greatness of their Savior and study about his life and his teachings, and come to know him in a more personal sense. We need to always remember Jesus Christ for their is a reason he is called the Savior, he saved us. He made it possible, for all of us, to be redeemed, to be clean, and to enter into his presences and the presence of our Heavenly Father with our Families forever. Now that is a pretty sweet gift after being so disobedient all the time, that's because he loves us so much. If you really take a step back and look at the big picture, you will see that he asks of us very little compared to others like in the Book of Mormon, and the Bible.
My dearest family members, and friends. I learned that in the biggest trials of our lives there is only one place to turn, and that is the Lord. We need to remember him and his Glory and his capability to give us strength and help us through his Atonement. Humble ourselves always, and to beware of pride in our lives.
I would like to share a story that a Sister missionary shared with me that I really loved. I get emotional every time I share it. I don't know where she got it from, but if some one said it somewhere all ready I'm sorry.
"There was a young man who had a dream. His dream what about him standing on a beach with the Savior next to him. He looked at the beach and where he was at, he could see a very long shore line, with the waves coming in and out, with beautiful mountains in the background. Your classic paradise. He then thought that the beach was a representation of his life and all the things that happened to him. There were footprints in the sand, and there were two pairs of footprints. He figured one was his, and the other was the Saviors. He smiled knowing that the Savior was with him in his life. Then he saw sometimes in his life there were only one one pair of footprints, and it was at the time of greatest hardship, and struggle in his life. He then turned to the Savior and said." Why did you abandon me in my greatest time of need? When I needed you most in my life, and you weren't there?". The Savior turned to him and said," Those are not your footprints, they are mine. Those are the times in your life where I picked you up and carried you through you trails and hardships." The young man began to cry when he realized how many times there were only one pair of footprints in the sand."
I testify to you all that if you will just only take a short time each and every single day to study the life and teachings our our Savior and Redeemer, you will begin to have a personal relationship with him, stronger then you think it could be without physically being able to see him. I know that if you will do this you will feel his love, recognize his spirit, and appreciate more for everything that he has done for all mankind. As I have started to do this slowly but surely in my mission which is just about 15 min a day I have all ready felt my relationship with Him grow stronger, as long as my Faith, and Testimony. I know that this Church is true and that is stores the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. I know that Joseph Smith is a true prophet of God, and that Thomas S. Monson is our living prophet now, in our time. I know that the Book of Mormon has the power to change lives, and that it is true, for it has changed mine. I know that Jesus Christ is my Savior, my Redeemer, and my Brother, and I say all these things humbly in his name, Jesus Christ, Amen.
Phew! You all better be crying after that one! I have spent my entire E-mail time typing out this letter!!
Okay, now for the more relaxed stuff.
So this is the most embarrassing thing that has happened to me on my mission so far. So of course me and my housemates are all doing Insanity and eating super healthy and all the jazz, and were looking pretty good right? So we taking pictures with our shirts off with ties on to be funny, and stuff like that ( Stupid Idea ) but one Elder forgot to delete all of his and when he was visiting his recent convert she was going through his pictures and saw all of them!!! oh no!!! Wow... I can't believe it.... I was so ashamed... haha The Elder told me that her exact words when she saw it was. " Why is Elder Kikel half Naked?" ( I had pants on) and they told me that she went on about how Macho I am hahahah freak. Thats not good. So now every time I go to church and see her she just giggles and laughs at me cause I am so embarrassed but she just loves to make fun of me. So moral of the story! DON'T DO STUPID THINGS! Especially on your mission hahah well I learned my lesson from that one.
Anyways I hope you all have a good week!-Elder Kikel