Another week has passed by. I honestly don’t know where the week went. I was just working and doing everything like normal and now I find myself here in the internet café writing you. Time is passing fast, no?
This week was great. We were able to witness the baptism of the sister Maria de Chavez. She is the wife of a recent convert- Osman Chavez. He got baptized about 7 months ago and since then, has been progressing and doing a lot in the church. Last week, he received the Melchizedek Priesthood, and Saturday, he baptized his wife.
When he got baptized, his wife was the one who was most against him getting baptized. So, the Lord has worked a miracle in softening her heart and calling her to the discipleship of Jesus Christ.
Osman was able to baptize and confirm his wife. it was so great as we saw the Spirit work in this family.
Tomorrow, President Uceda, the Area President, is coming here and will train all the stakes/wards/missionaries in all of Santa Cruz. It should be good. And since my ward has experienced such a change in things, the Stake President told us that it is super likely that President Uceda calls us up front uses the ward as an example of how to do the Work of Salvation.
I have grown to love the conference talks and the church magazines, they are the best. Today I was reading a little bit in the November 2010 Liahona and I really liked this talk by Elder Uchtdorf. He says: First, our relationship with God is most sacred and vital. We are His spirit children. He is our Father. He desires our happiness. As we seek Him, as we learn of His Son, Jesus Christ, as we open our hearts to the influence of the Holy Spirit, our lives become more stable and secure. We experience greater peace, joy, and fulfillment as we give our best to live according to God’s eternal plan and keep His commandments.
We improve our relationship with our Heavenly Father by learning of Him, by communing with Him, by repenting of our sins, and by actively following Jesus Christ, for “no man cometh unto the Father, but by [Christ].” 10 To strengthen our relationship with God, we need some meaningful time alone with Him. Quietly focusing on daily personal prayer and scripture study, always aiming to be worthy of a current temple recommend—these will be some wise investments of our time and efforts to draw closer to our Heavenly Father. Let us heed the invitation in Psalms: “Be still, and know that I am God.” 11
Our second key relationship is with our families. Since “no other success can compensate for failure” here, we must place high priority on our families. We build deep and loving family relationships by doing simple things together, like family dinner and family home evening and by just having fun together. In family relationships love is really spelled t-i-m-e, time. Taking time for each other is the key for harmony at home. We talk with, rather than about, each other. We learn from each other, and we appreciate our differences as well as our commonalities. We establish a divine bond with each other as we approach God together through family prayer, gospel study, and Sunday worship.
The third key relationship we have is with our fellowman. We build this relationship one person at a time—by being sensitive to the needs of others, serving them, and giving of our time and talents. I was deeply impressed by one sister who was burdened with the challenges of age and illness but decided that although she couldn’t do much, she could listen. And so each week she watched for people who looked troubled or discouraged, and she spent time with them, listening. What a blessing she was in the lives of so many people.
The fourth key relationship is with ourselves. It may seem odd to think of having a relationship with ourselves, but we do. Some people can’t get along with themselves. They criticize and belittle themselves all day long until they begin to hate themselves. May I suggest that you reduce the rush and take a little extra time to get to know yourself better. Walk in nature, watch a sunrise, enjoy God’s creations, ponder the truths of the restored gospel, and find out what they mean for you personally. Learn to see yourself as Heavenly Father sees you—as His precious daughter or son with divine potential.
I love you all. You are the best family ever and I hope and pray for you all to be happy. Keep safe this week.