Hey Mom, this letter I would like everyone to receive, if you could send it to everyone or something.
Well, as I never thought it might, the time has finally come. I have 4 more working days in my area, then Im going to the office to finish my mission. This time has been unforgettable, and I dont really have the adecquate words to express my feelings right now. I have fought the good fight, and I have served the Lord and the people of Peru for the past 2 years of my life. I dont know if I even deserve all the thank yous that the people are giving me, cuz what I have learned and received here is much more that what I feel like I have given. My time in the mission hasnt come to an end quite yet, but this will probably be my last letter home, and as I still have a nametag on, I want to share my testimony with all of you. These have literally been the most demanding 2 years of my life. Never before have I been away from home, from family, friends, and culture to live amongst strange people that I am somehow supposed to learn to love. It has been a difficult road, one where I have fallen in the bumps and gotten knocked down on my butt many times, but I have finally made it to the end. Ive literally been waiting for this time ever since I started, cuz when I started the mission, my 2 greatest and conflicting desires were to finish my mission, but go home right away. I didnt know how I would be able to learn a new language, live what seemed to me to be hard mission rules and teach a people that I didnt even know. But now, estoy complacido poder compartir con todos de ustedes, que ahora sé español, y puedo hablar, leer, y escribirlo. Ha requirido mucho tiempo y bastante esfuerzo, pero con la ayuda de mi Señor y el don de lenguas, he podido manejar y dominar este reto. No lo sé con perfección, pero estoy demasiado agradecido por el nivel de confianza que el Señor me ha dado al hablar y compartir el Evangelio en la lengua materna de mi familia, los Peruanos. Ya, thats enough Spanish for now. haha. But to be honest, my mission has been an amazing experience for me, I have learned about the Book of Mormon, the keystone of our religion, and I understand why it is the keystone of our religion now. Maybe I havent read it as many times as I thought I might as a missionary, but I am now familiar with the Book, and I have grown to love it. I had a testimony of Joseph Smith much before I had a testimony of the Book of Mormon, but thanks to much study, prayer, and fasting, I can now say with assurety that I know that the Book of Mormon is true. I have had many experiences that have strengthened that testimony, and I have seen it influence and change the lives of those that I have taught. I love this Gospel and I love my Savior so much. I first learned and grew to trust in the Atonement of my Savior Jesus Christ thanks to this marvelous work and wonder. I had always heard testimonies of others about the Book of Mormon and the Atonement, but until I really decided to look and search the Book of Mormon with real intent, that is when my personal appreciation for the work of the Lord started to grow. I have made a myriad of mistakes on my mission, and I am grateful that the Atoning sacrifice of my Redeemer Jesus Christ has the ability to still rescue me. I thought that the mission would change me completely, change my desires and change my personality right away. But I think I learned it best from a song that I have heard on my mission, "its not in the letter I cant wait to open, its not in the badge that will carry His name. Its not gonna grow in just 3 weeks of study, or magically come when I get on a plane." That opened my eyes to the reality of the grace of the Lord. I have needed the Atonement many many times on my mission, and I know that even thought I have failed the Lord at times, I am sure that He has forgiven me for my sins. My testimony of repentance is even stronger than it was before, and I will never be able to repay the Lord for that amazing blessing. I have been able to change so much on my mission, maybe not to the level that I would have liked, but I am 100% positive that I am not the person that I used to be. It has been thanks to much time, slow progress over a long period of time. Thanks to the efforts of many, my 12 companions, my 2 mission presidents, my 7 areas, and the wonderful influences and leaders that have taught me how to be. I thank so much my trainer and the Elders that I was blessed so much to be able to train. The mission is the roller coaster that I never would have paid for if I would have known, but the most exhilirating experience that I have ever lived, and the one that I am most grateful for. I know that this Church is true, I know that we are led my living prophets and apostles, and I know that they know the voice of the Lord. I know that this is the Lords church once again restored to the earth. The times that I stood up in church as a young man to bear my testimony, I think I always did it with nervousness. But now I can do it with a certainty that I didnt have before. Im grateful for my family that always impulsed me to do the right and that motivated and encouraged me to go on a mission. I testify of revelation, for I know that the Lord needed me to work here in Peru with the people that I did work with. My testimony is very simple yet very special to me. Im grateful that its small, cuz I still need to work hard so that it can grow. I love my Father in Heaven, and I know that He loves me. Im grateful for the investment that the Lord and the Church has made in me, and I hope to continue to repay it the rest of my life through my service and the way that I live. I share these things in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
Mom, there it is, my last dying words that I want you all to know. I want you to know that I am finishing with no regrets. I feel satisfied with the work that I have done, the way that I have lived, and the lessons that the Lord has seen fit to teach me.
My flight to the states isnight at , or in other words early morning, if im not mistaken, so i dont know if i will have the chance to write you again until i get home, or be able to call you, but keep that in mind, and that the flight will be about 12 hours, if im not mistaken. I still dont have a flight itinerary, but that is the info that i currently have. plan ahead!
i love you so much, mom. ill be home soon, i cant wait to see you all and hug my best and wonderful and beloved family. i love this gospel and i love all of you. thanks for your examples and love that i have always been able to observe and receive. see you soon, before you even know it!!
Misión Perú Lima Sur