Monday, February 22, 2016

2/22/2016 - Transfer to San Fernando

What a week it has been here in California! It above 30 degrees as a regular here and this is winter weather so everyone is wearing sweaters and are all bundled up, its supposed to get up to above 50 in the summer so that should be fun!

I am in a treo once again since I came in too late for the transfer and I am having a blast! Elder Wilson and Elder Gentemen are really fantastic they are filled with the spirit and we are having a great time together, we have a total of two investigators we are currently teaching, They are some interesting fellows, Anthony lives with his mother and doesn't have a job so he is open a lot for us to teach and he is pretty receptive, despite some initial concerns, of some weird anti, apparently people think we teach in our church that the moon is populated, and we still practice polygamy and we are all liberal. but we cleared a lot of that up and he is really excited to learn more.

I have to really hold myself back a lot, there are a lot of people here who really like to argue and demean the church, on the other hand there is a lot of respect people give to us going out and proclaiming our religion, apparently not a lot of churches go out and do what we do, there was one lady that was convinced we practiced polygamy and we told her we didn't and she kept saying, "Yes, you do!" then we would state that we don't and she would tell us we do once again, and there was no getting past that, so set was she in her mind that we practiced it that we could not tell her otherwise, then another lady kept trying to convince us that God, Jesus Christ and The Holy Ghost were one and the same person, and I was so tempted to whip out the bible and prove to her that she was wrong and We were right. My heart was filled with contention and I really wanted to just tell her she was blind and that she needed to open her eyes, but then a thought entered into my mind, to bare my testimony and holding out a Book of Mormon I testified that I knew it was true and that Joseph Smith truly saw God and Jesus Christ Two separate beings with bodies of flesh and bones, and when I stated the first vision the spirit of peace entered into my heart and the spirit of contention fled, it was so amazing, we gave her the Book of Mormon and exhorted her to read of it and pray about it. It was an amazing experience.

There is something that has bothered me since the beginning of my mission, something that I have seen and felt from non-members and members alike, that we don't appreciate what we have, this gospel is such an amazing blessing and is incomprehensibly simple and awe inspiring, and not many people understand that we can be so much more that what we are now. Its hard to explain the depth of feeling I have for this, a lot of times I have felt that church was a burden, when we needed to do home teaching or other callings in the church I viewed it as an inconvenience something that I could do without, but looking now, I know that I never understood the blessings that it brings, all the programs of the church all we are called to do is for a purpose, please find that spark in the Gospel, Hear the music that goes with the dance, I know that all of us are living below our privileges, that we don't yet understand what exactly we have, this treasure in which we are squandering, Awake and Arise! and be more that you are now! Look at the Treasure laid before you! we have a book that can bring us closer to God in every way, and we set it as not, do not be complacent don't waist your time on meaningless things when the true meaning of life and happiness is laying before you, Pray with all energy of heart, and humble yourselves to the depth of humility, walk the path that Christ walked, Lift each other up, and look to the light which is the light of Christ. I exhort you, all of you, Sam, Ben, Abby, Mia, Mom, Dad, Steph, and Tyler, the time is at hand when we must choose to be all in or all out. 

I love you guys so much and hope you are all doing well, 

Elder Joshua Smith


Mom I know you like folk music a bit and a cool music group is called The Lower Lights, I bet you would like it,

also something I have realized as a missionary is that pictures and letters are like life, whenever I get some I am filled with Joy and happiness I never truly understood how deeply they effect a missionary until, Hey! I was a missionary and Boom! I realize that hearing about your lives and seeing the progress of my family truly is what I yearn for.

P.S. 2

I also finished The Book of Mormon and am looking forward to reading the Bible now! I hope everyone is reading well and that they are reading with a purpose or question in mind.

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