Monday, July 21, 2014

7/21/14 The End of a New Beginning

Well, it's finally coming to an end...before I know it I'll be back in the states again. Rather than saying its ending, it would be more appropriate to say it's the end of a new beginning. My whole mission I've been thinking about the "end" but it's just recently dawned on me that this was just practice for the real test.

While serving the Lord for these two years I have grown to develop a true relationship of Him. I know he knows me perfectly. He knows what I need, when I need it, and how to give it to me. He is my elder brother, my example, my advocate. We are sons of our Heavenly Father, and he wants me to inherit the kingdom of God alongside him (Romans 8:17) For that reason he has used me in ways to (1) bless others, but (2) bless and prepare myself more than anything. I came with the intent to rescue the people of Bolivia, but somewhere in the midst of all that he saved me.

What I have experienced is defined in the gospel as a change of heart, otherwise known as repentance. The Prophet Alma explained that those who are obligated to be more humble seek for repentance, and those who look for repentance will find mercy (Alma 32:13). Well, after walking these Bolivian streets filled with dog poop, trash, and flies under this ridiculously hot sun, I've had some time to reflect, be humbled, and repent. I have felt the atoning power of the sacrifice of Jesus Christ at its height. He has called me to repentance and forgiven me in ways I couldn't imagine, receiving more blessings than deserved, bringing me to my knees in tears feeling guilty for the blessings that I don't deserve.

What motivates me more than anything are his many promises given through the scriptures; giving us assurance that as long as we keep the commandments we will be blessed (Mosiah 2:22,41). I testify of that truth.

The Lord has called me to declare repentance and baptism to all those here in Bolivia. The time has come to report to him how I have fulfilled this sacred calling. I can say I've given it my all, but at the same time there's a lot more I wish I could have done. The Lord has taught me patience which is one of my worst qualities, but I know that too was part of his plan for me (Alma 38:3).

I have developed a love for the Book of Mormon that I never knew existed, a respect for Christ's Holy Priesthood that I didn't have before, and a new eternal perspective on life. I thank those of you who have supported me while being here and am grateful for the eternal friends Heavenly Father has blessed me with.

Last of all, I want you to know that Christ lives. He has not ceased to do miracles, give revelation, or direct His Church. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8). I am a witness of these things. They say the mission is a tithe of the 20 years of life that he has given us, but even more so than ever, I am in debt to him. And so I return, looking to repay this debt by giving my whole life to him as a representative of him.

See you all very soon.

       Elder Ure
Mision Santa Cruz de los Milagros

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