What's good, team?! Hopefully you are all winning over there in the United States! How is the summer going so far? Hopefully SO good with SO MANY fun things planned! More than anything...hoping that each and every one of you is feeling of the divine love from our Heavenly Father that He wants all of us to feel. I hope that He is touching your heart and that you are truly and humbly seeking His miracles and mercies.
This week, of course, was a great one! I feel like the Lord blesses me with a better week every week! And every week seems to get faster and faster which is a scary thought! But I am loving it here in Ecuador, Duran, Panorama!
Elder S and I made Salsa! We started talking about all of the things that our Mom's made at home that we love...and we came to the conclusion that we can't make any of it. We don't even have a oven (even if we did I would not know where to begin) but we decided to try salsa! That didn't work out too well...it was super foamy...like some type of Bubble Bath Mexican dish...however, we learned from our mistakes and made some pretty good salsa! Still missing THEE Tracy Noll's though... ;)
The door to our apartment doesn't reach to the ground so there is about an inch gap for all of the furry woodland creatures to come accompany us :) We captured a lizard in a bottle this week and boiled a toad! So I guess they are not furry and woodland...but it is always fun to guess what is going to be crawling around on our walls at night when we come home!
Hmm...I cut my finger on a coconut...
An Hermano in the ward got us a FORTY pound box of bananas...we WILL turn into Gorillas by the time those are gone.
I talked to Johnson on Friday...I called him to sing happy birthday! He was doing a service project. Cutting grass with a Machete. 19 doesn't get much better than that, does it?? Always good to talk to the dude! I think we are going to meet up next week...so stay tune for "Jessi and Jake: The Legacy Continues" next week! ;)
On Saturday we had the chance as a zone to meet up with all of the ward missionaries and go on splits to give out magazines and different things from the church. Me and my companion ended up finding the most amazing family. We did our little whistle at the door and the guy who came to the door was so insistent that we come in. I was't going to at first because the goal was to just pass out the magazines and set up an appointment for the other missionaries for another week. But, I felt as if we should go in. They turned out to be a less active family...they had a plethora of doubts and challenges. "P" and I were blessed with the opportunity to help resolve some of them. I was blessed to leave them with a prayer and I asked if we would be able to do it on our knees. The spirit that I felt was something that can't be put into words. There was not a dry eye in the room. I love how the spirit testifies and comforts. In the middle of an abandoned dirt field...in a wooden house with a cement floor...the Gospel is still true, the spirit still exists just as strong, and God is still our forever loving Father in Heaven.
Father's Day is this week, right?? I sure hope so! Because that is what I would like to touch on today in this weeks message!
I love when the sons of Mosiah experience a change of heart and desire of their father to permit them to preach the gospel to the Lamanites. I would assume that their father had quite the wrestle on deciding to allow them to go or not considering they had to "plead with their father many days". Finally, King Mosiah sets a legendary example...
"And King Mosiah went and inquired of the Lord if he should let his sons go up among the Lamanites to preach the word."
Following King Mosiah's prayer to the Lord, he is promised that "many shall believe on their words and have eternal life", that they will be "delivered out of the hands of the Lamanites", and that he should "let them go up".
Throughout the missions of these sons they are delivered many times from the hands of the Lamanites and bring many unto the truth and into eternal life...and I have a testimony that it all stems from the prayers of a father.
When Ammon saved the King's flock and is preserved, I believe that Mosiah had just said, "Amen". I believe that the imprisoned sons of Mosiah were "delievered, clothed, and fed" after their father had begged to his Father in Heaven to keep his sons safe. As a missionary and a son myself, I have felt of the blessings of a father's prayer. Every time I feel alone, rejected, or let down, the feelings are almost instantly replaced with comfort, a feeling of acceptance, and a feeling of love...and there is no doubt in my mind that those feelings come from a cry to our Father in Heaven by my father in Utah. Every time that I receive a blessing I see my dad getting off of his very own knees. Every time I feel the love of God I feel as if my dad just expressed his love to his Eternal Father.
The power that fathers hold truly is divine.
The love that a father can hold is truly sacred.
How blessed you are as Fathers to hold such divine and sacred power and love. How humbling it should be to be called by your Heavenly Father to protect, love and be an earthly father.
I tend to struggle when it comes to expressing my love for my own father. My gratitude. However, I would like to thank my dad. I love you dad! You have taught me how to work, how to grow, and how to love. Your example has taught me how to live. I grow to be more and more grateful for you each and every second. Happy Fathers day, dad.
I would now like to finish with the calling of the Father of us all. His love. His divine power. And His sacred role. I testify that there is no greater love under the Heavens nor above the countless number of universes than the endless and eternal love that Heavenly Father has for you ... personally and individually. We know from John that God "loves us to the end". Brothers and Sisters...there is no end. His love springs forth forever. He loved you enough to create an earth for you to have joy. He gave you a family that you might feel a portion of what His love feels like. He loved you enough to give you a Savior and Redeemer. He loves you enough to give you a way back to Him. He loves you perfectly. He loves you enough to leave His Celstial and Glorious Thrown to descend below all to be with you in your lowest moments so you can inherit His thrown as well. He is mindful of you. Mindful of your needs and desires...and will give you anything and everything that you need to obtain the highest degree of Celestial that you were foreordained to receive. His love defies all darkness. His compassion destroys all doubt. His mercy takes away all weakness. And His power takes away all despair.
Thank you so much for all that you Americans have done for me in my life. Especially you fathers! Especially my father!
God speed, Team!Elder Noll
|Jessi and his long hair obsession :)|
|Got the package full of goodies for him and Elder Johnson|
|You can only imagine what Jessi's caption was for this picture!|