HEY ALL!!! Long time no see...or talk!Sorry about last week...when I logged on the first thing I saw was that Zayne left One Direction...I could not see the computer screen...I couldn´t write...my heart broke to millons of pieces...but if he is going to walk out on us Directioners...he doesn´t deserve to dismotivate me...haha ;)
One night we ran into a super super drunk man...we contacted him because we couldn't tell that he was drunk...he was giving us quite the scare...he wanted to come to our house and was getting upset with us because we wouldn't tell him where we lived...but he eventually carried on with his drunk self across the street and out of sight.
The other Saturday we had quite the experience...
we have been working with the biggest stud...and he has been having the most difficult time with making a decision to be baptized or not...he knows the church is true...he has a testimony of everything...he just hesitated because he doesn't want to fall away after making such a sacred covenant with our Heavenly Father.
Anyways...he called us last Saturday around 6:30 and told us he was ready!
WE WERE OVER THE MOON!
...then he told us we had to do it before 7 though...
THIRTY MINUTES TO GO TO OUR HOUSE, GET THE CLOTHING, GO TO THE CHURCH, FILL THE FONT, AND PREPARE THE PROGRAM!
We were losing our minds!
I am sure the people of Ecuador were getting quite the show watching us white dudes run through the streets with white clothing in our arms and dying as we gasped for breath.
We made it to the church and then we couldn't find the plug to fill the font...
So we put out thinking caps on and got a plastic bag and filled it with toilet paper and stuck it down there...and voila! :)
that didn't last too long...eventually the bag got sucked down the drain and we couldn't reach it! Haha! Finally the mission leader showed up and told us that it plugs automatically when you turn on the water to fill it...
so i guess those thinking caps didn't work too well...haha...and there is a bag deep deep in the despairs of that drain...hopefully it doesn't cause future problems!
He eventually showed up and he forgot to bring a white shirt so I had to lend him mine and I had to wear his blue dress shirt...the rest of the night!
People were giving me the weirdest looks...I looked like I was headed out to the club or something...
but the baptismal service was incredible all around!
The Lord is so mindful of us...we had been asking so fervently for him to make a decision and for The Lord to give him the confidence to go through with this covenant...and The Lord provided...like He always does and always will.
Last week a member in our ward passed away...
We went to the funeral to pay our respects and the daughter kind of surprised me with a request...
´´Elder Noll, you wouldn't mind dedicating the grave, would you?´´
So that was a neat experience to say the least!
I had never seen one done before...but I will say...the spirit was so strong I can't put into words. It was incredible.
KNOWING where this member was going and to whom he was going to live with comforted us all and ´´death had no sting´´. How blessed I feel to have had the opportunity to perform that sacred ordinance and how truly lucky I feel to be capable to act as God´s hands with the power that He has blessed me with.
Conference was great...at least the parts that we saw!
Saturday was really neat! It was a little different in Spanish for the first time...but the messages were all the same and how blessed we are to have a living Prophet!
Sunday we set up the projector...everything was ready to roll...the opening hymn started...and the power went out again!!!
What you want, Satan?!
But we beat him out and figured things out as fast as we could and got things up and rolling again!
I feel like there is so much to say and not enough time to say it!
I know I am forgetting so much but 2 weeks built up of pure awesomeness causes for some left out details!
hmmm...saw a dead pig in the road...we had no food on Sunday and we couldn't buy anything so we went 100% strait up Pioneer...flour and water...NEVER AGAIN.
...a giant toad jumped on my foot and wouldn't budge! I had to kick my leg like a maniac until the dude went flying!
I am doing so so so so good. AMAZING! I love it here and I love this work!
There is no better blessing and no better place I could be!
Here we go...I am already holding back the tears...
I know I frequently talk about Christ and His Atonement but there is no event in the history of time that even slightly compares to the divinity and heroic final hours of our Saviors earthly ministry and His resurrection. For that reason and the fact that we are celebrating Easter, I would like to just simply bare my testimony of our Master and Shepherd.
I know with every fiber of my soul that Jesus is the Christ. I know that He lived. I know that His birth was a miracle brought to pass by our loving Heavenly Father through the virgin Mary. I know that Jesus Christ is the Only Begotten Son of God. I know He was perfect in every way possible and more before His life, during His earthy life, and He continues to live without a single fault or flaw today.
I am forever grateful for His Atonement for mankind.
I believe that as Jesus ´´took with him Peter and the two sons of Zebedee, and began to be sorrowful and very heavy´´ (Mat. 26:37), our Brother was faced with a decision. Our Brother was faced with a choice.
A choice that would mean life or death for the children of men.. A choice that would mean life or death for you.
I believe for a moment time stood still. As time stood still, one by one, each and every one of you entered His mind and His heart.
Jesus Christ saw you. He saw your tears. He saw you fall. He saw you in agony. He saw your fears, your insecurities...He saw it all.
He looked you directly in your beautiful eyes and KNEW you.
He then heard you. He heard your cries. He heard your doubts. He heard your struggles.
He came to know you perfectly.
Then time returned...
He had to make the decision...
´´then He saith unto them...tarry ye here...´´ ´´and He went a little further...´´ (Mat. 26:38-39).
The second Jesus Christ made the decision to ´´go a little further´´ was the second that He changed from our Brother to the Everlasting Savior and Redeemer of the world and universe.
So after seeing you...and after hearing you...
He felt you.
´´He went a little further, and fell on His face.´´
Every single tear that has filled your eyes, rolled down His cheeks first.
He fell on His face before you were even capable of falling for yourself.
He faced your fears so you wouldn't have to.
He sweat your blood and sins from every single pore in His body to give you eternal life.
He was beaten and smitten to give you a light and a way.
He was punctured with a crown of thorns so that you could have a crown of glory.
He was pierced by nails on both hands and was risen to die on a cross so that your heart could be pierced by love and you could rise up to eternal life.
He did it all.
He did it all for you.
He did it all after knowing you...
Finally...I know without a shadow of a doubt that Jesus Christ overcame death with His power and faith and arose to live once more...to live again for time and all eternity.
And He loves.
He has saved you and I from captivity and from the grave.
I am not sure what the words from Elder Holland were exactly in English...but the translation goes a little like this...
´´A garden stained with sweat, a cross driven with nails, and an unfilled tomb´´
...take a moment to picture those three things in you mind.
And KNOW that it was all for you.
There is no way to put an end to this message...
All I can say is that Jesus Christ, the Savior and Redeemer of this world and others, the most perfect human being to ever walk the earth, the resurrected and living Son of God...
And His love has no limits...
and that alone...should make you feel pretty darn special.
With as much love as I can possibly offer,
but nothing compared to what our Savior has to give,