Monday, June 7, 2010

It's Time to Go so Put All Your Clothes On

Monday, June 7, 2010
HELLLLLO EVERYONE! How are all of you doing? This transfer has been another long, yet short transfer but we have accomplished a lot in these past weeks. I hope that all of you are doing well and that you all are getting prepared for the best event in the world. THE WORLD CUP! Oh my gosh I'm sooo excited! It's definitely going to be the best one yet and luckily I'll most likely be in a Spanish area because I will be going to the Spanish program, who knows where though. I find out tomorrow. Ahhh I'm so excited. Spain for sure will win it all. ¡Viva EspaƱa! :)

Anyways haha this past week has been an interesting one. Nothing too out of the ordinary but a few things happened that were amazing. First off, Tracy and the kids got confirmed yesterday! They look just like the ordinary members that have been in the church for years, it's awesome to see how the gospel does change lives in the sense that it leads to action. The other day when we went over there to teach about the Holy Ghost before the confirmation and it was amazing to see how they felt about their baptism. Tracy said, "I felt good. I felt lighter, like all the load was taken off my shoulders." Then Dalton said, "I felt good too. I want to do it again." To me that is so amazing because it proved to me, even more, that the atonement of Jesus Christ is real and powerful. The spirit was so strong in that lesson. So I know that I haven't talked about Lucinda recently but that was because we thought that she had passed on. She fell off the map for about a month. There is some news about what happened. Sadly she is on the other side of the veil. Haha nah but that is what we seriously thought. We even told her and she didn't believe us. There is some unfortunate news though, she has forgotten everything that we have taught her so that is a major bummer because it took forever to get her where she was at but it's all good. Life will move on...hopefully. Haha. As far as our area is going, we found some new people that we are working with but they haven't come to church yet. We will give them more time to go because, afterall, we have only been working with them only for a little. BUT there is this one lady that seems promising, her name is Letizia. We tracted into her the other day and it was another one of those experiences that we tracted for a couple of hours and she ended up being the last door. Amazing how things work out over here. We gave her the Restoration pamphlet and explained the importance of the restoration and asked her to read it. Normally when we do that, the people either (1) don't show up for the return appointment, (2) don't answer the door even though they are home, (3) don't read. The amazing part is that she did all three!

So for my spiritual thought I thought I would explain something that I have learned during my personal study. Currently I'm going through the Old Testament and it's amazing. This is something that really made an impact in the way I look at Abraham. Here we go:
So as we know in Genesis 22 it talks about how Abram, also known as Abraham, was commanded by the Lord to sacrifice his son. Obviously there are signs that point that it was a representation of the sacrifice of the only begotten son of our Heavenly Father but here are a few things that I think are looked over when we read this story. Abraham obviously has many characteristics that our Father has. Interestingly, his name Abram means "exalted father," and Abraham means "father of a great multitude." Both of these came also summarize attributes of our Heavenly Father. Issac also bears some similarities of Jesus Christ. His name, interestingly enough, means "he shall rejoice." Like Jesus, Issac was also born in a miraculous way-the seemingly impossible. Sarah, just like Mary, was a woman from whom birth was not possible by the usual ways. But through the intervention of God, they both were able to conceive. Even Paul called Issac the "only begotten son" in Hebrews 11:17 when he referred to this event. The Lord not only asked Abraham to do this as a similitude of His own future actions but it also took place in the same place that Jesus Christ would make His sacrifice. In the scriptures it says that it would be revealed unto Abraham where he should go, this place ended up being Moriah or "upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of." Moriah, today, is a major hill in the city of Jerusalem. After the sacrifice of Isaac had taken it's order, by an angel stopping him and then providing a sacrifice, Abraham named the place Jerhovah-jireh, which the King James Version translates as "in the mount of the Lord it shall be seen." The amazing part about this is that Jesus was sentenced to death within the walls of the Antonia fortress, which was only about 100 yards away from the sacrifice of Abraham (at least the traditional site). Then the Savior was put to death at Golgotha, which is part of the same ridge system as Moriah. Another point that I learned that showed that it was a similitude of the Savior is that Issac voluntarily submitted to the will of Abraham, which was lead by the Lord. "The Old Testament does not give enough detail to indicate exactly how old Issac was at the time of this event, but it was possible that he was an adult. Immediately following the account of the sacrifice on Mount Moriah is recorded the statement that Sarah died at the age of 127. Thus, Issac would have been 37 at the time of her death. Even if the journey to Moriah had happened several years before Sarah's death, Issac could have been in his thirties, as was the Savior at the time of His crucifixion....What is significant is that Abraham was well over a hundred years old and Issac was most likely a strong young man who could have put up a fierce resistance had he chosen to do so. In fact, Issac submitted willingly to what his father intended, just as the Savior would do." Cool huh? I think that when I read all these things I was in shock. I didn't think that that one story had so much to do with the Savior. I know that all scripture that is canonized by the Church all leads and speaks of the Savior, Jesus Christ. I know that because I have read them and I also know that because the Lords leaders have said so, and it is such.

I love you all and I miss you so very much. Till next week. Later.

Elder Leavell

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