"Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou
dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee withersoever thou goest."
-Joshua 1:9

Monday, April 21, 2014

So grateful I did not make the Lord wait...

Hola mis amigos y mi familia! I hope that this letter finds you all doing great and kicking and living it up. Everything is going good here in Sabana Grande. Don’t you worry, it’s still hotter than Hatai here but all is good. Just enjoying the tan and the culture like no other. Every day brings something new and it’s always an opportunity to learn and to grow. That’s one of the best things about the mission, learning through others and their experiences. Cada dia we have the oportunidad to learn from otros. More and more I am thankful that I did not make the Lord wait to serve my mission. It’s a blast and a blessing at the same time, There is no other place in the world that I would rather be than where I am right now. Well sometimes maybe somewhere else when the gangsters are nuts but that is all a part of the experience right!? So lets get down to it shall we...

This week like many others in the whole world, the people here were celebrating Semana Santa or in English, Holy Week. So this week was full of crazy activities in the streets and pretty much a week to party. Everyone gets off work to spend time with their family and to celebrate the atonement. Well a lot of people just use it as an excuse to get drunk, go to the beach and have a good time. The beach is about an hour and half from here so literally everyone was gone like all day every day. Also there is a place cerca called Nueva Armenia that has a nice river with like water falls that a ton of people went to as well.  A lot of people though actually are very serious (the devoted Catholics) and do a lot of activities and things in the streets and at the church. So we had a lot of encounters with drunks and making them do funny stuff in the streets, many people got a kick out of it. Making them do balancing activities which not one of them could do, making them do karate and stuff like that... it was HILLARIOUS to say the least. So that was a good time!

This week we also had an activity at the temple. It was for all the recent converts and for investagadores (forgot that word in english haha sorry) but it was awesome! The whole theme was based on The Atonement of Jesus Christ. I am so thankful for the atonement in my life. My conocimiento (forgot that word too, cant think of it) of the atonement has changed my life. I am forever thankful for the oportunidad to learn and feel the atonement in my life. I know because we have a loving Heavenly Father we have the opportunity to return and live with Him once again, it all depends on our life here on earth. We need to make good decisions and live the best lives that we can every day. The power of the atonement is real. If you don’t feel the atonement in your life, I encourage you all to study and live out what you learn. I’ts one thing to study, but it’s otro thing to live out what you learn. I promise you all that if you learn about the atonement of our Savior, your lives will forever change and you each will feel the spirit more in your lives, and receive more blessings. I have seen it in many people that I have taught here. People that are alcoholics, drug dealers, real straight up gangsters, people that don’t believe in anything... but when they feel the power of the atonement in their lives, their lives change. Flat out change. There is nothing better than seeing someone aligning their lives on the path of our Savior. When we do the things that we know we need to do and should do, we will see change, and we will be better people for it. The power of prayer is real and we can draw closer to our Savior through prayer. It’s powerful. It also changes lives. I am so thankful for the opportunity to learn more about my Savior through my journey here and through the journey of others. I know and feel that through serving others we feel the love of the Savior more in our lives. The scriptures say that when we are serving others we really are serving our God. I challenge each of you this week to learn more about your Savior through the atonement. When you learn and feel the power of the atonement your lives will change like mine has the last 9 months. Our Savior lives. I see and feel it everyday brothers and sisters. I am so grateful that I have the opportunity to serve here in Honduras at this time and at this place. I am thankful for each one of you in my life. You all mean so much to me and I have really have learned from each one of you. Thanks so much for your love and support while I am here 

Make it a special week brothers and sisters! Aim high in all that you do and put your best foot forward cada dia!


Con mucho amor,
Elder Long! 

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