Friday, October 24, 2014

10/20/14 – Father in Heaven Loves Us!


 Elders Gillespie and Wright in Shelley, Idaho

I have no desire to return home from my Mission. Fortunately.... I GET TO GO HOME TO IDAHO FALLS AND CONTINUE ON WITH MISSIONARY WORK AFTERWARDS.

As the weeks go by I'm constantly reminded how short my Mission is. I feel as though there are things I'm not doing as good as I could be doing at this point in my Mission and I need to step up my game. I certainly hope to touch the lives of many. That'd make me feel good later down the road to run into someone and hear, "It was because of you... and now I'm happier." In all reality, the Lord is doing just about everything through me. I'm not discrediting the efforts I put into all that goes on in my area and in my life as a Missionary. But, He has given me so much that I can't even comprehend all of it at this point. I don't know why our Heavenly Father has done certain things for me. At the same time, I know that He loves me immensely, I am His son. He wants me to return to live with Him in Heaven again. He rarely will flood us with light in this life. I've learned that only through tribulations will our Father in Heaven give us light. As we get through trials with patience and faith, He will give us just a tad bit of light. Some trials are bigger and as such we may receive more light. Patience is essentially the key in this life to 'receiving all that the Father hath'. This life is SOOOOO LONNGGGGGG. Then again, it goes by so quickly. I wonder more and more what Heaven will be like with all of my ancestors and (hopefully, dogs too) descendants. What is everlasting joy like? I can't imagine as I go back to some of the happiest moments in life having THAT feeling for eternity. Nonetheless, that joy is probably not a tenth of the amount of joy we will continuously have after this life when we have done all that we can to keep the covenants we have made and follow Christ's teachings. It kind of makes me wonder too, with what little I know about what our Father has in store for us, Satan is seemingly trying harder and harder to rip me away from my faith. I wonder what our Prophets and Apostles must be tempted with as Leaders of our Church! And then even more so, our Brother, Jesus Christ, He lived a perfect life, Satan tempted him, how great that temptation must have been. But then again, if we sincerely and diligently seek out more and more light; if we build our foundation on Christ (Helaman 5:12*), how hard will it be for Satan to tear us down? Probably pretty hard. I don't know a lot of things. I know that this life was meant to be one big test. It was meant for us to make mistakes, to learn, to grow, to experience what it's like having a family, to receive a body, and I'm sure I'm probably missing some other things. I hope all is well with each and every one of you. I pray for you often. 

Love,
Elder Gillespie

Pray like everything depends on God. Work like everything depends on you. 

Helaman 5:12 “And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall.”



Monday, October 13, 2014

10/13/14 – Irrevocably Decreed

 Elder Gillespie's Shelley Selfie!

GOOD NEWS! 

Elder Wright will officially be the longest companion I've had! We'll be staying together for another 7 weeks. Last transfer was a 5 week transfer and this week will be 7 weeks, usually they are 6, but they had a special meeting happen so it just worked out that way. I'll get to finish Elder Wright's training and then I will likely remain in the area as Elder Wright moves on. At least I kind of hope that's what happens so I can experience an area for longer than 3 months. 3 months definitely is not long enough in an area in my opinion. We have got sooooo much going for us in this area and I pray that if I don't get to witness the fruits of my labors that those who I've been working with will continue to progress and ultimately come to have a sure knowledge of the truthfulness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I've seen some dark things this past week with some of the investigators we've been working with. All of these experiences I witness and hear about are only testimony builders. They confirm to me the NEED for the peace the gospel brings to us even a midst the hardest of trials in life. It's a scary world out there. But in all honesty, we must live IN this world, as it is our Father's will, but we need not worry for everything OF the world. When we do what God has asked, we'll be taken care of, whether it be in this life or the next. We see those who have seemingly "perfect" lives yet they are sinners in one way or another and automatically question why we cannot have those same "things" they have. We just need to remember we are laying up our treasures in heaven, our rewards or blessings may very well not come in this life, sometimes we forget of a certain principle of the gospel, ENDURE TO THE END. Anyways, that's a commandment, thou shalt not covet. 

Off of my tangent, this week has been going swimmingly. God's been preparing me for events to come. I'm a tad worried I'm going to be built up rather strong and be given something that will attempt to destroy me. I see hard things on its way. Kinda excited for 'em though to be honest. Alma 27:27 (And they were among the people of Nephi, and also numbered among the people who were of the church of God. And they were also distinguished for their zeal towards God, and also towards men; for they were perfectly honest and upright in all things; and they were firm in the faith of Christ, even unto the end.)

Love you all,
Elder Gillespie

I can't believe I've resorted to selfies as a missionary.


PS from Betsy: What my humble son didn't include in this email is that he was also assigned to be a District Leader to serve the other missionaries in his area as he continues to train Elder Wright!  Whoot-Whoot!  Proud Mom right here!

Sunday, October 12, 2014

10/6/14 - It Doesn't Matter Who We Are


Elder Gillespie in Shelley, Idaho!

We are ALL children of God, "we are all created equally", He loves us no matter our circumstances or flaws. As what was emphasized at General Conference this last weekend in the Saturday afternoon session we need to love all for it is not our place to hold grudges and be slow to forgive. I loved that session in particular it emphasized something I have felt for a very, very long time. Great weekend to say the least. This week has been great, we set up 6 appointments in ONE day for this upcoming week and we are excited to see what comes of it. We are definitely seeing the fruits of our labors and our faith. I'm expecting to be with Elder Wright for another transfer, in hopes to finish his training, we find out this Thursday what will be happening though. 

Heavenly Father answers our prayers, you just have to listen, watch, and continue in faith. I've been blessed in these short 7 months. It's amazing what you will see as you ask for help from our Father. He is there to help guide us in all things and as we heed to His Holy Spirit we will ultimately receive everlasting joy and eternal life. We won't be perfect, but Lord knows when we have done all that we can and He will take care of the rest after that. 2 Nephi 25:23 (For we labor diligently to write, to persuade our children, and also our brethren, to believe in Christ, and to be reconciled to God; for we know that it is by grace that we are saved, after all we can do.) But we must be careful that we not allow ourselves to think that the mercy of our Father in Heaven will rob justice, just as D. Todd Christofferson said this last weekend. This has definitely been an interesting transfer of training/ whitewashing. Each week I recognize growth in myself in one aspect or another and it is amazing. I love my mission. Sometimes I wish I was somewhere else because it’s just weird being inside such a highly populated LDS area. We cover whole stakes or half stakes out here, so we work with like 4 to 12 bishops at a time and with that many people, you just can't please everybody. The members here in this mission are good people though. I've had a lot of great examples of what family should be and I in turn have many ideas of what I want to do with my future family. Life seems to be moving so quickly at this period of time in my life. Even when I take time to kind of just soak things in, the next thing is already happening and I need to move on to taking care of that.

Love you all,
Elder Gillespie

The best paths in life are rarely easy. - Dieter F. Uchtdorf