Friday, January 2, 2015

Week 16! Almost a New Year!

Whatsss upppppp friendddssssss annddd fammiilllyyyyyy!
I hope all of you had a wonderful Christmas this past week! I had one of the best Christmas years ive had in a very long time. Wasnt because of the things i got. It wasnt because of getting to talk to family on skype,( Which by the way was freaking awesome!!!!!) But it was because it wasnt all about me this time. Right after talking to family in the morning, I was straight out to work just like any other day out here in the mission. It wasnt too special of a day in terms of how i Usually viewed Christmas in the past, but it was a very special one for lots of other reasons. 
One of the greatest things that happened that day was probably one of the most simplest ones. That day after studying and getting ready for the day, we had planned to visit an Old lady, one of our investigators. A couple days before, she blew up on us telling us how horrible we were for trying to visit and teach people about stuff they dont believe in. She got really mad and chastised us. We didnt let that stop us. 
After finishing study, we got everything else ready and we headed over to Okuwa, the local Supermarket. we went over to the candy section and got her favorite candy and then decided to go and visit her. The lady was still in a funk for some reason but she accepted the candy and we wer able to teach her about Christ a little bit and about some of her questions she had. After that we left. And that was that. We didnt feel AMAZING about the lesson, but it wasnt bad!
At Church yesterday, our Branch President comes up to us with a fresh fruit package. We look at the sender and it was the lady we taught! She found the address of the church and ordered a TON of fruit and sent it to us. (Which in Japan is INSANELY expensive) We took it home, had some fruit, and found a letter from her in there. She Explained, how bad she felt for being so rude to us before, and thanked us for being so loving and kind to her even on Christmas. She felt horrible after she said because she felt nothing but love from us.
Right then I knew even more our Heavenly Father and how this is his work. Lately ive been praying and seeking for the gift of Charity. Praying so that others can feel the love i have for them and that im not just some crazy random american telling them to repent! (Despite the fact that thats basically exactly what im doing haha) And there i knew my prayer was answered and the Lords power and love for not only me, but for this woman as well, was manifest. To me it was proabably the smallest thing that couldve happened all week, but it was the best one. Due to the fact that i was able to lift someone up that day and that they were able to feel my love. What better way to spread the meaning of Christmas!
Recently Ive been learning A LOT about charity, but specifically Love in general. Im beginning to understand what Love REALLY is, what it can do for others, and its power in general. Love is literally the supreme power or force in the universe we live in. Everything in this universe IS, everything exists, because of love. Because of Gods love for us. He gave his only begotten son, because he loves us. Christ suffered the Atonement because he loves us. He literally could have said, Alright peace out i cant do this! its too rough. i dont want to. etc. But he didnt, he followed through and did his fathers will, because one, he loves HIM, and two because he loves US! When i think of that, it gets me everytime. No one would do literally anything unless they love it, or were doing it because they love some one. Matthew 22:36-40. (Please Read). The Two great commandments of the lord. To love Him, and to love one another. Love your parents, love your friends, love your family, forget the faults or wrongdoings some may have and seek the good in everyone. Because there is always good in every individual. Learn to forgive, and forget, and to continue to love. Because for some, that just may be exactly what they may need!
Ill never forget driving home from church for the first time with Destiny in the car. That day i brought her to church for her first time before getting baptized. And i remember asking her,

Hey! how was church! how'd you like it! She turned and said, Never before have i ever felt so much LOVE from people i never knew. I wanna come all the time now!

Ill also never forget my beloved Bishop. Bishop Dellenbach! About two years ago, my father got a new job which brought us down to Southern California. At that point, i was in the midst of my junior year of highschool. That was probably one of the biggest changes in life for me, it was very hard, I didnt really want to go, but i had to. Ill never forget my first sunday I had in our new home. We went to church that day, and i REALLY did NOT want to go. I didnt want to have to meet new people,  new friends etc. But my first sunday there, was one of the best i ever experienced. Bishop Dellenbach made me feel like i had been there in that ward for years. he welcomed me in so well, and really made me feel loved. So Bishop if youre reading this, thank you! I love you! :)
Love is powerful, love is the motive, love is everything. really find it within yourself, your relationships with your spouse, friends, family, whomever, and really strengthen the love within. I testify itll make life, happier, more peaceful, and filled with joy when you do so. Hold family home evenings/family time, read the scriptures together, pray always together to our loving father in heaven. I know that all these are just some of the few ways we can develop love for others and strengthen the relationships we already have. 

During this New Year, make it a good one! make 2015 a solid year. Luckily for me i get to spend ALL of it in the service of the Lord. (Try not to be jealous ;)) Set goals, make plans to become better, etc. Some of them may or can be things such as what ive listed just barely previously ;) Haha When we set goals, we got a vision, when we got a vision, we know where we are going and thats what is important. Whats also important is following through on those goals you set! Work hardand have a good new year!!
I LOVE you all very much if you cant already tell :) Thank you to everyone who thought of me this christmas and sent me a card or package! :) Yall are the best!! Until next week :)

Elder Jacob  M. Preciado 


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