Well, it was quite a good past week that we had, directly underneath the sun. But seriously, it has been at least 100 degrees for the past week, every day. And we still have more time before it gets to be the hottest. Its pretty rediculous. I sweat sooo much that my shirt has a brown line on the back where my backpack hits my shirt. Because of this I have been using my soccer bag that I brought instead or my companions bag because it isn't stuck to my back. Regardless though, life is still great. I may hate the heat, but I am growing to love it here.
This week we were able to meet some new, very wonderful families who are really interested in our message. The first is the family of Marçello and Nyra. Nyra was baptized when she was 11 but she hasn't been to church in a really long time. Marçello does not know much and he has never really been active in a church, but they both seem to like our message about families and how the love of a man and women can extend into the eternities. It really is amazing though that, through this gospel and covenants made with God in the temple, we can be sealed to our spouse for all time! I recently listened to a talk by Elder Scott, of the twelve apostles, and he spoke so beautifully of how marriage and a family is such a divine union. Lets just say I am more excited for the future now, after my mission.
Along with Marçello and Nyra, we are also teaching a boy named Jefferson. He is 10 years old but you can tell he is more mature than that. When we talk him about the restoration of the church he was very in tune and we could tell that something had struck him. Our next visit we talked about baptism and he decided to be baptized on the 27th!!!! Very exciting. There was just something different there for him, and you could tell the spirit of the Lord spoke to him.
Recently, I have been thinking a lot about the Book of Mormon. What is it really? Why do I walk around with copies of this book, testifying to people of it's truthfulness on a day to day basis? Well this is what I could come up with.
We are all wonderful children of a most loving and gracious God, our Heavenly Father. He loves us so perfectly as to give us this life to choose for ourselves and to have to joy, as well as sorrow. He knows we are not perfect. He knows we cannot be perfect, even though he requires this of us( New Testament, Matthew 5:48). So, He in His infinite love and wisdom, gave us His Son, Jesus Christ, whose name literally means Saviour and Messiah. Only through Him can we achieve this perfection and through His atoning sacrifice and example, we may repent and retry to follow in His footsteps (Book of Mormon, Mosiah 3:17). The Bible; Old and New Testaments ( or another translation of the ancient text, Old and New Covenants), contain much of the words of the prophets and messengers sent before and after Christ to testify of him. We even have 4 accounts of the personal ministry of Christ. However, over the centuries, many plain and precious things have been lost from the Bible as men, who with good and bad intentions, tried to translate and preserve the words of the Prophets ( Old Testament, Amos 8: 11-12).
However, men are imperfect and today the words we have are not as they used to be. God in his wisdom peserved a record with the fullness of the gospel of Christ and words of the Prophets from the hands of men. Through Joseph Smith, a prophet of modern times, this record was translated into English by the guidance of Holy Spirit, and later into 100's of langauges for the world. Yes, this book is a book of scriptures, with the words of God's called prophets in ancient times. No, it is not a Bible, a replacement Bible, or even a handbook for the Bible. It is a seperate record, given to us by God to explore and study with the same furiousity as the Bible; and with these books together, we are able to have once again the fullness of Christs path, and God's plan laid before us( Book of Mormon, Introduction). This testifies of Jesus Christ. This book speaks of Christ. This book has the direct words of Christ given to the ancient chosen people of God( Book of Mormon, 3rd Nephi 10-27). Through prayer and a heartful desire to know the truth, anyone who reads the book can know that it is a true record (Book of Mormon, Moroni 10:3-5). And when they feel the Spirit of God testify that it is true, they will also know that Christ is our Savior. This is our message. This is my message. This is every missionaries message. It is a message of Christ. And I know its true
I love you all!!
Elder Asa Laws