Monday, August 3, 2015

8/3/15 – Still Loving Life & Always Learning!


Hello Friends and Family,

I wish I enjoyed English class more, writing these emails would be easier for me haha. Some interesting events have taken place this week. Let's just say it will be interesting if I get transferred up to Rexburg either this transfer or the next. I'm loving life! ALWAYS LEARNING SO MANY DIFFERENT THINGS! It's AMAZING how accelerated your learning is as you devote your life to preach our Savior's gospel. I WISH WE WERE TEACHING MORE PEOPLE IN OUR AREA! Poor Elder Kim isn't getting a whole lot of experience teaching yet, but we pray and hope that all of our role plays are helping us out! 

Ta-Ta for now, my lovelies,

Elder Gillespie

7/27/15 – Our Missions… My Mission… My Testimony of Truth!

Elders Gillespie & Lui - on exchanges

IF WE ALL KNOW WHO WE WERE BEFORE WE CAME TO EARTH, WE WOULD BE SOOOOOOOOO PROUD OF OURSELVES. Our spirit selves are pretty awesome. Our spirits are full of love, charity, kindness, etc. etc. We came to Earth out of a sincere desire to fulfill a life of service. We've all been sent on specific missions throughout the world. We are to try our best to overcome the 'flesh' part of our being, which is imperfect, with sin, illness, and temptation, and accomplish our mission! We, as spirit children of our Father in Heaven, are filled with pure goodness. When we all one day return 'home' to our eternal family we will be able to finally let out a sigh of relief. Not that our work is over, but this moment on earth, which IS but a moment, has finally passed. Earth is pretty great, like I DO like this place we currently call home, but if we remembered what we left behind we would, in a sense get pretty 'trunky' (missionary term for packing up and ready to go home). 

My Mission has been great. It's been difficult. It's been satisfying. It's brought me to a deeper testimony in my Savior, Jesus Christ. It's increased my love in my God, myself, and my fellow travelers in this mortal journey. I've witnessed the power of the Atonement work mighty miracles in the hearts of many! I've witnessed Satan's influence in the life of many! I know what will bring true and everlasting happiness and it is not by following that fallen angel. Good ole' Lucy is a wise being, but we know what his fate is in the end, and we know his attempts to bring us down are in spite of the good choices we've made thus far. I testify that the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ IS contained within the Book of Mormon and that Thomas S. Monson leads and guides His church. 'The only true and living church.' I know this by diligent prayer and studies. More importantly, by the power and influence of the Holy Ghost! 

Love,
Elder Gillespie

(Excerpts from his emails to Michael & me – Mom, Betsy Peila: 
As I have gone throughout this past week I have experienced some very sweet revelations that I desire for the whole world to know. I felt how GOOD all of us who were born on earth were, before we came to earth! WE WERE ALL SOOOOOOOO GOOOOOD, and to a large degree still are. We are caught in a constant battle, though, between our eternal spirit and our mortal bodies, the natural man, our infirmities, etc. etc. We CHOSE to come to earth and to face many of things which we face in these latter days! We were brave enough to leave the comfort of our true home and come to the earth and receive our 1st estate. We were excited to do so even, and we did it out of the love of our hearts. We did it so we could serve others and fulfill the mission our Father sends us to accomplish. We will not return home any sooner than after we have accomplished that mission… we must all exercise our own agency and face our own trials in life. The new found knowledge I have obtained of who we once were, who we are now, and what we have to look forward to, has given me much comfort and strength and has allowed me to tap into the living waters Christ offers. I have felt myself becoming more like him, yet I fear for trials and struggles I am sure to face in the future…
Thanks for all of your support; I'm excited to start to keep on keepin' on!)

7/20/15 – Give Me Jesus


Elders Gillespie and Sitivi on Exchanges
Hello,

Sometimes I look at myself, then I look at others around me, then I look at things happening in the world, and I begin to question lots of things. Why allow these wicked things to happen in the world? Is Satan winning the battles we're fighting with him? We know that he will ultimately lose the war, but could we as a whole be doing better? Why would Jesus die for someone like me? Why would Jesus die for someone like him? Why is it so hard to overcome temptation at times? Why do I keep giving in to evil thoughts or actions? The Spirit is willing, why can't the body be!? Jacob 4:14 I often seek for knowledge of things I cannot understand. Sometimes my questions are not worthy questions. Diligence, patience, long-suffering, all are principles that Christ taught. "Your afflictions shall be but a small moment, and if you shall endure it well, it shall be well with you." There is relative truth and there is absolute truth. Christ taught absolute, eternal truths, and man creates/discovers relative truths. I suppose gravity is an absolute truth, but gravity can be affected by a greater law known or unknown. Mankind’s understanding of the universe is constantly changing. The truths of the Gospel are unchanging and in a state of perfection and absolution. Our knowledge, our understanding, our easiness of the way are all affected by who we are and what we do with what we know. We are judged according to the knowledge we've been given and according to the desires of our hearts. I love people. Especially those who are living unawares to the truthfulness of the Gospel. But for some reason, I have a hard time loving those who are willingly defying God against the greater knowledge that they have. I become indignant and my heart becomes depressed at the sight of apostasy. I pray that God will allow me to see as he sees. I pray to see the bigger picture of life. God's plan is perfect. Our plan is not. Sometimes we give into temptation even against our greater knowledge of God. But as God's plan is perfect, he has provided with us a perfect chance to change and follow in Christ's footsteps. Christ died for us because of his love for all sinners. The joy they feel when one returns to righteousness from iniquity is so great. Greater than that of their joy in someone who needs no repentance. The sorrow they feel when one turns from righteousness to iniquity is greater than any can imagine. They yearn for all to come unto Christ. They yearn for all to understand that YOU CANNOT BE TOO FAR GONE. They understand perfectly our circumstances and our desires. Therefore, they are the only ones qualified to truly help us overcome sin and lift us out of the pit of sorrow. I ask for Jesus to be my guide in all that I do. I am a peculiar person, I am a sinner, I am ultimately in need of a Savior. We all are. Thus I share this glad message to the people of Idaho and all who will hear. Jesus is the Christ, he is our Savior, and our Redeemer. He has paved the road to eternal life. If we look to him in all that we do, we will be a light in the lives' of many who are in need. Billions walk in blindness, Let us love our enemies and be forgiving of all. If we are not, it will simply become the blind leading the blind.

Rant... Over... 

I LOVE MY MISSION! How great is our God?! I'm a living testimony of the healing power of the Atonement. I invite all to allow themselves to feel of our Saviors redeeming love through faith in Him and repentance!

Love,
Elder Gillespie

(Portions of his email to his Mom, Betsy Peila:
It's been an interesting mission! I'll tell you what! I've experienced almost every emotion you can feel these past 16 months… These past 6 months, especially, I've learned more than I can even express in words. I love hard things we are given in life! They're so hard! I also have a testimony of obedience! Because we are obedient to the commandments, we receive blessings! What a surprise! It's not like the scriptures say that about a thousand times or anything!   (Sometimes -) I feel alone at times in obedience. I'm by no means a perfect missionary, nor am I perfectly obedient, it simply amazes me at the easiness of falling into the tempter's snare! I hope to see changes in myself as I strive to keep a broken heart and a contrite spirit as I partake of the Sacrament weekly and as I always think about the Savior's example. It was perfect!  I only have about 8 months left, which may seem like a long time, but I know it will fly by. That makes me nervous sometimes. Am I really using my time here in the Saviors service as wisely as I could be? Anywho, food for thought! 
Love ya,
Elder Gillespie)

7/13/15 – Life is Good


Elder Gillespie's District from 7/12/15 (he's back center)
New Mission President & his Wife at left:  Gene & Diane Hancock from Wilcox, AZ

Hello Friends and Family,

Short on time this week. Going on a hike today. Life is good. Companion is amazing. Learning lots. Loving lots. Converting lots. Planting lots of seeds. Being very patient. Giving talks in church. Making lots of friends. Having good conversations. Doing the small and simple things. Inviting all to come unto Christ.

Love,

Elder Gillespie