Dear Mom, Dad, Eric, Belle, and Coffee,
I love the Lord. I love that he gave me my mission in order to come closer to Him. Everything He does is perfect and for our benefit (2 Nephi 26:24). I can't wait for the day that I may kneel before Him and confess my devotions unto the most High. My mission has allowed me to be converted more than every before. My mission has become so beautiful to me. I was telling Eric in my email to him this week that it used to kind of irritate me when he jumped on anything South African. It was as though all he had to hear was the name of the country and he would pounce all over it. I was naive in many ways. I hope it doesn't irritate you all, but I've realize that in a very real sense I have a similar attachment. I imagine that I will talk so much of Taiwan and my experiences, that you will be happy to send me to BYU ten days later.
Hey Dad, you know where the song concept for the song "I Love the Lord," is principally taken from right? It comes from a scripture that gave me a lot of comfort in the MTC when I felt really inadequate: 2 Nephi 4:16-end. It's a beautiful set of scriptures that illustrates the righteousness and earnest desire of Nephi to be a disciple of Christ. I love reflecting on his desire to be free from the bonds of sin. He is truly remarkable. It's this set of scriptures that has given me motivation for a lot of my mission. Hearing it in song is gorgeous.
Thank you so much for praying for me. I can feel your prayers. I know that we'll see success in the form of baptism soon. JiaYi is such a prepared place where many are prepared to hear the gospel. I imagine that we'll baptize several before the end comes, but for the time being, they haven't come quite yet. I know that as you and I pray for it, they will come. I'm so grateful to be here at this time. I know that these challenges are from the Lord and are allowing me to grow. The gospel is truly remarkable. The Lord knows everything you do and cares about you every step of the way no matter where you are (Alma 26:36-37).
The world is full of false doctrine, and at times even the church has areas of apostasy. Many materials, talks, etc. must come out frequently in order to allow people to know exactly our stance on everything. Leaders will visit missions, wards, stakes, etc. in the attempt of ensuring that doctrine remains pure and refined.
The Rose Bowl sounds like an awesome family activity. One thing I've noticed is that my personal attention span has increased dramatically. Not to say that I ever found football uninteresting, but merely that I am able to pay attention much longer than usual. I would love to attend such activities with my favorite people in the whole world.
I hope that you're doing well in all of your cycling ventures, dad. Don't get yourself hurt any more than you already have. I expect you to be there in one piece when I return.
It's strange to think that Mason is leaving on his mission soon. Why did he wait so long to go out? Either way, I think it's wonderful. He probably wanted to be there for his brother to return.
Thank you so much for your kind words of direction throughout the past few weeks. As time closes in, I will need more and more of such direction. I love you all so much and am constantly astounded by your commitment to the Gospel. The gospel is true and will never change no matter how many people don't believe it or how many people say it's not true. Truth can't be changed and will not change ever.
"The future is as bright as your faith." - President Monson