Monday, August 16, 2010
We learn so much every week, and every day! I love it.
Every Saturday morning we take the metro and go into the big park in Madrid (which I can't remember the name of...) and talk with people about the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. Last Saturday, as we did this, I really enjoyed it. It took a lot of work to understand what people said, and at times I didn´t understand all of it, but I had experiences that really helped me grow and that strengthened my testimony. The Spanish language is beautiful, but along with that I felt words spoken in the language of the Spirit, which makes it even more beautiful to me.
Every day, except Thursdays and Sundays, we play fútbol with a bunch of local kids down at the field. To answer your question, Jacob, it´s a mixture of a street game and a real game. One of the kids, Luís Carlos, is probably about 9 years old I think, and he comes up to my shoulder, so he's small, but he has got some moves! Yesterday, he sent me the wrong way so bad I almost fell over. But I also dribbled the ball between his legs, so we are even. It's a lot of fun and we all have a good time.
My birthday went really well. Some of the missionaries went and bought some cakes without me knowing and we ate them at lunch. Everyone sang, and it wasn't the same as home, but I enjoyed it.
One of the many things I learned this week had to do with family, and how privileged I am to be a part of my family. They are people that I want to be with forever, and I am so happy that we can be. All of us are privileged to be part of our families, and our families can be together forever because of the atonement of Jesus Christ.
On the way to Spain, on the flight, I read this scripture, which I have read many times, and it had a great impact on me as I considered the Savior's love for each of us.
Alma 34:9, 10, 14-16, 31 "For it is expedient that an atonement should be made; for according to the great plan of the Eternal God there must be an atonement made... an infinite and eternal sacrifice... and that great and last sacrifice will be the Son of God, yea, infinite and eternal. And thus he shall bring salvation to all those who shall believe on his name; this being the intent of this last sacrifice, to bring about the bowels of mercy, which overpowereth justice, and bringeth about means that they may have faith unto repentance. And thus mercy can satisfy the demands of justice, and encircles them in the arms of safety... for behold, now is the time and the day of your salvation; and therefore, if ye will repent and harden not your hearts, immediately shall the great plan of redemption be brought about unto you."
The atonement of Christ, this love He showed for us, this sacrifice in our behalf, is the means by which we can have faith, which leads to repentance, and we can have a hope in Christ to receive mercy and forgiveness. And when we exercise this faith, when we begin to repent, immediately that healing power takes effect and begins to change our hearts.
I know this is true. Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer. Through the power of his atonement we can find joy and everlasting life. ¡Nunca se de por vencido! (Don´t give up!) DOn't quIT!
I love you all soooo much,
P.S. I'm really grateful to everyone that has sent me letters and I'm really sorry I haven't written you all back but I'm really trying to figure out a way I can do that, somehow. ¡Adiós!