Monday, January 2, 2017

¡Feliz Año!

Happy New Year! I still cannot believe that 2016 is over, a year that I will be extremely thankful for, for all eternity. It was a year full of growth, trials, and helped me to know who I want to be the rest of my life! And also the year that went by fastest in my life. Hope you all had a wonderful year 2016 and a happy start to the year 2017 and that all your resolutions can be fulfilled! 

Hopefully you all were a little bit more lively than everyone here yesterday .I was walking the streets all day yesterday, and finally everyone started to wake up and come outside at about 8 pm, haha. I don’t remember that at all last year, so it was a little bit of a surprise even to me this year. And well, our sacrament meeting attendance was not the best either, the bishop stood up to give his talk and talked a little bit about the Restoration then said “And our congregation today looks a lot like it did in 1830, about 10 people”, haha. Needless to say it was a pretty tough one yesterday, but sometimes that happens! 

This past week was pretty crazy busy with the transfers, and I think we only really worked in our area 3 days. So, a lot of new details about that I don’t really have sadly. We are still working with Alan, who is from Perú and is awesome. It has just been a little tough getting him to church with Christmas and then New Years, as it has been for everyone these past 2 weeks. He is very sincere and wants to come closer to the Lord, but he is having some problems sacrificing time to do so because he works a lot, and he is in the process of building a new house as well. We have also been working with 2 other couples to get them married, and help them to get baptized! I feel like a marriage counselor sometimes haha, but I have realized that the answer is always very simple. Many couples want to be happier, want to have a more loving relationship, want to live more comfortably, and fight less. The answer to these problems are very simple, and really it is the answer to many of life's problems. The only complicated thing is us!  But we as missionaries have the same invitation to all who want to improve their quality of life, marriage, and whatever needs they may have – that they can repent and come unto Christ! I love the scripture in Mosiah 2:22 

 22 And behold, all that he requires of you is to keep his commandments; and he has promised you that if ye would keep his commandments ye should prosper in the land; and he never doth vary from that which he hath said; therefore, if ye do keep his commandments he doth bless you and prosper you.¨

The Lord has given us the answer, and it is a very clear and simple one. The thing that we should be doing every day is trying our best live the way that the Savior has asked, and that is what really determines our true happiness, and the relationship that we have with our spouse and kids, and the quality of life that we have. It is the only way to truly live happily. I remember in my first area, Elder Kelly and I were teaching a couple that ended up getting married and baptized, but they had a ton of problems. And I remember always thinking to myself, being a new missionary and coming from the family I came from “Why do the littlest things bother them and cause them to be mad at each other and want to get separated every other day?” It would be things like one of them didn't help do the dishes, or one of them cooked 3 days in a row, or one of them always changed the diapers, small things like that. And of course there were bigger things too, but mostly the smaller things were what really set them off. And I remember telling them that they are missing the point! Instead of thinking about all the things that your spouse does you don't like or that bothers you, you can instead spend your time trying to live in harmony with Heavenly Father's commandments and in turn reap the blessings that come from righteous living, and then you can really be happy. Heavenly Father has given us commandments so that we can be happy, and so that we can also be guided in our daily lives! Other scriptures that I love that help us to understand this a little more include one that is at the end of this same chapter of Mosiah:

41 And moreover, I would desire that ye should consider on the blessed and happy state of those that keep the commandments of God. For behold, they are blessed in all things, both temporal and spiritual; and if they hold out faithful to the end they are received into heaven,that thereby they may dwell with God in a state of never-ending happiness. O remember, remember that these things are true; for the Lord God hath spoken it.

There is another promise from the Lord that those that keep the commandments will have a state of blessings and happiness, far different than those that do not. And the blessings come spiritually and temporally as well! So our biggest effort should be put in trying our best every single day to be better disciples of Christ and obey His commandments!
In D&C, we see many promises of those who are obedient, including this one: 

10 I, the Lord, am bound when ye do what I say; but when ye do not what I say, ye have no promise.

I know without any doubt that this is the true Church of Christ, and this is His true Gospel. As we strive every day to live in harmony with Heavenly Father's teachings, we will always receive the blessings that we need in this life, maybe not everything we want, but definitely everything that we need! I am so thankful for the guidance I have because of the Gospel in my life, and I don't know what I would do without it! Jesus Christ lives and died for all of us, and all He asks is that we follow Him, and we will live our earthly lives happily, and also return to live with Him, in a state of everlasting peace and happiness, alongside our families! 

I love you all, and thank you for all the love and support that you guys give me every week! I am incredibly blessed with the best family and friends! 

I hope that 2017 can be an incredible year full of progression and happiness for all! Always remember what is truly important! J

Elder Yeoman
Elder Ayres and Elder Hendricks (from the same MTC district)
Elder Ayres (MTC companion)😊

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