Hey Mom!! :)
How are you doing? How is your health holding up this week? How are things going adjusting back to normal life after your crazy spontaneous trip to Disneyland? :) I am super super jealous that you got to do that. Can we do that when I go home too? ;D haha That would be really fun. :) Let's see....where to start this week. How about President Wada's deepest desire...haha
So, this past week we had the opportunity to once again attend Mission Leadership Council. it was super good, and I learned a lot, and had some really really good experiences. I loved it so much, and I hope that I can continue to apply the things that I have learned there. As a quick side note, one thing that I have learned a lot about on my mission is that there is a huge value in actually applying the lessons that you learn from the meetings that you go to. I haven't noticed too many changes in me on my mission, but this one I have noticed: I have come a lot more sensitive to the things that I learn and the value that they could have if I really applied them in my life. It is something that I am really working and striving to do. Anyway, that is a little tangent that I had to meander off onto, but the real story was this way funny thing that President Wada said. Pretty soon we are going to be able to use Facebook again for missionary work, and there was about a 5 page section in a specific handbook that we have (called Becoming Disciples in the Digital Age) and he said, "My deepest desire is for you to learn what we are about to read." It made me and Elder Driscoll chuckle a little bit that it was his deepest deepest desire for us to learn how to use Facebook. Haha. But, that little story set aside, one thing hit me extremely hard in the meeting. It was the Spirit. It basically came like a 200 mile an hour bullet train and slammed me in the face. :) In all honesty, I felt much like Lehi, when he got chastised for murmuring when they didn't have food in the wilderness. The Spirit kind of chastised me for a couple of things. Mainly forgetting some of the incredible experiences that I have had in the past with the Spirit. Those are things I'm not supposed to share yet, but they were incredible, and I hadn't thought about them in a while. And the Spirit very strongly reminded me to remember them. And it made me reflect on the importance of the spiritual experiences that we have in our life. How many times do we just take the things that we feel for granted? How many times do we feel a prompting, and just ignore it? More often than that, how often do we feel a prompting, begin to act, and then because of the busyness of life just get caught away in other things? It is so important that we do not shut out those small and simple things, sometimes even the big things. They are the foundation stones that we are to build on in order to
endure to the end of eternity.
I learned another thing from this experience. At the same time that the Spirit was chastising me for forgetting, I never felt more love in my entire life. That is how I know that it was really the Spirit, and not just me beating myself up. It was incredible. While I was being told things that I needed to improve on, I was feeling the love of God in so many ways. In a lot of ways, it was one of the most powerful witnesses to me of the love of God. Also, I learned a lot about how we are supposed to give correction. When we give correction, we should have already built up a relationship of love and trust. Also, when we give it, it should not be accusatory in anyway, but instead showing the blessings that the offender could have received. It is a completely loving, all encompassing thing that I know will take a long time to learn how to do, but is nonetheless not impossible. I am excited to learn how to do that as well. :) I really feel like you and dad have been able to do that in my life. So thank you so much for that. :)
Tell Becky Congratulations!!!!!! I am so so thrilled for her, and I can not believe that this day finally came! Also, thank you for your challenges mom! I am definitely going to do that, and there are definitely things that I want to improve on from the past year. :) Thanks so much, Mom. How has your last year been? Are you improving? ;D haha I challenge you to do the same things that you asked me, although obviously some of the questions have to be switched because of the nature of our separate callings right now. :) I love you, Mom!! :) <3
I hope that you have a fantastic week, and that you give everyone lots of extra hugs for me! :) Don't forget about Jenna's Birthday!! :) <3
Love, Elder Livingston