Sunday, December 18, 2016

Came to Know the Savior More this Week...

I have realized that stress is evil. I try my best to avoid it. I started to get stressed this week and then I though, I don't think the Savior ever stressed out. I think stress comes from fear, so I shouldn't fear/stress. I think that it is important to be urgent, but never stressed.

This week was awesome! I really am enjoying having this new "mega-area" and a "mega-zone". Having a large area like this has been so much fun. We've been able to go all around it and teach all sorts of different people. Both Elder Drebot and I feel so confident that there are loads of people for us to baptize and we are both ready to harvest! The Spirit that we've felt has been amazing. I have really learned that I still have so much that I can improve on as a missionary, and I'm so thankful that I have this opportunity to change and become more of the missionary I need to be. Elder Drebot is a great missionary and I am grateful to be working with him.He's got a great work ethic and I enjoy working alongside him. I look forward to baptizing with him. We will. This gospel is so true. Turning our will over to the Lord is often hard, but the blessings really do come as we do it. My testimony continues to grow of that principle.

I came to know the Savior more this week through revelation by reading about the Savior's voice talking to the people in the destroyed cities of the ancient Americas, recorded in 3 Nephi. I was so impressed by His mercy. He really does not care what we've done or where we've been; He only cares that we return to Him so that He "can heal [us]". He doesn't want to tell us how we are wrong or make fun of our weaknesses, rather He wants to build us up and help us see our potential. He wants to allow us to be the most happy and successful version of ourselves possible, but we have to be humble enough to change whatever it is in our lives that is holding us back and accept His will. If we have "real intent", we can become "new creatures" and overcome any negative obstacle in our lives so that we are cleansed through the atoning blood of Jesus Christ. I have really focused on His mercy this week and how I can better access His grace. I am no longer trying to do things all in my own strength, rather I am going out and doing things that I know I am too weak to do on my own, but fully trusting that the Lord will not let me fail. I testify that He will not let us fail if we are acting in faith. The tricky part is we really have to act. I'm thankful for the strength the Lord has granted me this week to do things that I didn't think I could. I'm excited to see what more this upcoming week brings! 

This past Sunday was so awesome! We had two less-active members come that we've been trying to get back! We also were able to have Sister Guzman get confirmed! It was so cool! I got to do the confirmation as well and President Jergensen happened to be there for that sacrament meeting so he stood in the circle as well! It was so spiritual. I was sad that she missed her confirmation last week, but I think it may have been so that she could have him there this week. She also got assigned home and visiting teachers so things are looking up for her! I'm so happy for her! 

I can't believe that it's almost Christmas time again! I feel like it was just Christmas! The mission is going so fast. There's still tons of people left I need baptize, but it is starting to feel weird that my mission will one day end. It's a weird feeling. I don't know how to describe it. haha

I love you and miss you a lot! 

Your Elder Jackson

Here is a picture of our Ward Mission Leader, Brother Vargas, Abigail, President Jergensen, me and Elder Drebot. He sent this picture to Elder Zwick of the Seventy because he talked to her at stake conference and she felt something really powerful there. Also, Sister Meza right before she went to the mission office. Elder Jones and I were the only missionaries who were in this stake last Christmas, so we thought we'd take a pic at the annual Jergensen Missionary Christmas Dinner & Caroling! It was fun! This was the chalk board I drew for the zone conference we had this past week!

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