December 23, 2013
Hola familia y amigos! Feliz navidad a todos, espero que tengan felicidad y amor por todo esta semana :)
This has been an amazing week! B..n's baptism was yesterday and it was incredible. By far the most spiritual baptism I have been to. This kid is...amazing. He has so much potential! Tons of people from his "school" came, as well as people from the ward. You probably remember the situation--Bishop Ah.....n owns this facility for troubled youth, and he noticed a spark in B...n. B..n would always talk to the returned missionaries that were on the staff about the Gospel. So then we started teaching him, and he fell in love with the Book of Mormon. I'm pretty sure he finished the whole thing in a matter of 8 weeks or less. Each week he would tell us in animated detail about where he was in his reading.
The baptism was performed by Bishop Ah....n. As the two of them stood there in the water and Bishop Ah....n got ready to say the prayer, he paused for a second because he couldn't speak. Tears were coming down both of their faces, and I'm sure many faces of those watching. After a minute, he baptized B..n. As they were getting ready to come back out, we sung "I Know that My Redeemer Lives" and "I Believe in Christ" to keep the Spirit there. Afterwards, B..n got up and bore his testimony. He is such an incredible young man; I know that he will do great things! He is planning on leaving on a mission as soon as he can.
The other day as I was getting ready for bed I was thinking about Christmas coming up, and I had this realization that I am slightly embarrassed hasn't occurred to me before. I was thinking about how, yeah, the birth of Christ is great, but the Atonement is what is most important. But then I realized that what we celebrate at Christmas has slightly more to do with our Heavenly Father than it does with Jesus Christ; "For God so loved the world, that He gave is only Begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life. For God sent not His Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through Him be saved." (John 3:16-17). God knew perfectly well what He was sending His Son to do here on Earth; He knew everything that He would suffer, and the sacrifice that He would make. I guess we could liken it to a mother sending her son off to war--the hardest part is the good-bye. At Christmas time, celebrating the Savior's Birth, we are celebrating the sacrifice that God made in sending His Son to the world. Or at least, that's what I would like to think :)
And just as I said last Christmas, I feel blessed that as I celebrate God's greatest gift to us this year, I can be giving others the second greatest gift that I have power to give.
On a lighter note, last night we had our Missionary Christmas Program! I was super excited to be in St. George area this year so that I could participate. All the missionaries in Washington County met at the Tabernacle and sang. The Tabernacle was pretty much full! It was really neat. I took pictures, which I will send to you :)
After the Christmas program, I was out in the audience saying goodbye to a couple of the other sisters before heading out, and this little 9 or 10 year old girl ran up and gave me a huge hug and said, "I found you!" I was slightly confused how I knew this girl, but it was really cute! Her mom was a little confused as well, so she asked her, "How do you know her?" And she replied, "The primary activity!" I guess that she was one of the 1000 primary kids that came through the Visitors Center a few weeks ago, and she was in one of the groups that I did--amazing that she remembers me! How sweet is that?
Know that I love you all so much, and I am excited to get to speak to some of you in two days!