Sunday, March 1, 2015

True Conversion - Letter to Mom - 16 February, 2015

Hey Mom!! <3 :)

How are you,  my mother? It sounds like you are doing incredible as
the YW president! I bet that they all love you! At least
like.....1/100000 that I do! ;D haha Okay, you are right....maybe not
quite that much. ;) I love you, mom!! How is your health doing? Are
you doing okay? I heard that you taught Emmett to throw coins into the
fountain today! And you somehow pulled out and won being called Nana,
huh? At least it is not Mimi ;D haha I bet that you are the best Nana
Ever!! :) I miss that little guy.

So, this week has had some pretty hard parts. Last Tuesday we had a
lesson with Norton san, and he said that he did not want to take lessons
anymore, and that he was not going to come to church anymore. It was
super sad, and way hard emotionally. He has progressed and learned so
much, but for whatever reason he still has some concerns (which he
actually won't tell us...makes it really hard to resolve them :P ). I
hope that as we continue to reach out to him and befriend him that he
will be okay. I talked to one of the people that would come and be
there for our lessons and she said that she is really worried that if
I transfer, it will be really hard on Norton san.

Speaking of which, next week is transfers! Ahh!! I can not believe
that it has come this fast. The transfers fly out here. You only get
16, and I am finishing up my 4th already...crazy huh? I can not
believe it. I feel like my Japanese is not quite where I wish it would
be...but I guess I can't demand myself to be fluent after 6 months,
huh? haha I am so grateful for the Japanese that I took in High
School. It has helped leaps and bounds out here. Elder Suzuki said
that he feels like my Japanese is more where a transfer 8 or 9
missionary is, so that is good! My goal is to sound like a Japanese
person by the end of my mission. :D And with the Lord, All things are
possible!! Also, next week we have Temple P-day, so I will not be able
to email until Tuesday, just so that you do not worry when my emails
do not come the same day.

One thing that I want to challenge you to do is something that Elder
Bednar challenged all of the missionaries to do when he gave the
Character of Christ talk. He said to go out and buy a cheap paperback
copy of the Book of Mormon and then just start reading it with one
question in mind, and then mark it up a ton. And then at the end of
the Book of Mormon, write a small half sheet summary of the answer
that you found to your question. It is incredible. I have been doing
that with the question, "How can I best obtain faith, hope, and
charity?" And it has been incredible to see how much more powerful the
scriptures have been. Try it. I promise you that you will not regret
it. :) Also, if you are right in the middle of some other scripture
reading program (that is just one way to study them) then try it with
my question and just Jacob 5. It is the most incredible chapter ever
if you look for all that you can about those three things. :)

True Conversion. (Shout out to Kaitlyn for the email she sent me
during the week! It really helped me out, and really helped me to
focus on being better). True conversion is absolutely incredible. True
conversion is not a point, but a journey. True conversion is never
easy. True conversion always requires sacrifice. In the Book of Mormon
we read, "And as sure as the Lord liveth, so sure as many as believed,
or as many as were brought to the knowledge of the truth, through the
preaching of Ammon and his brethren, according to the spirit of
revelation and of prophecy, and the power of God working miracles in
them--yea, I say unto you, as the Lord liveth, as many of the
Lamanites as believed in their preaching, and were converted unto the
Lord, never did fall away." This is Alma 23:6. There is a very
important part of this verse. It says that as many of the Lamanites as
believed in their preaching. That is all of those that gained a
testimony. But then it adds, and were converted unto the Lord. Those
were the ones that never did fall away. Become converted. A testimony
is incredible, and so powerful, but conversion works miracles. I
testify that this is true.

Mom, never stop your conversion. I know that you are converted, but
always continue to grow in the gospel. You will work even more
miracles as you try to become more and more converted. I love you so
so much, and I miss you lots, but know that I am praying for you, and
thinking of you from over here in Yokohama, Japan!! <3

Love you!

Love, Elder Livingston

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