Monday, August 3, 2009

We Must Come Unto Him With a Broken Heart

Dearest Family and Friends,

But before the great day of the Lord shall come, Jacob shall flourish in the wilderness, and the Lamanites shall blossom as the rose.

(At left, Elders Soto and Layton during a recent preparation day in Indpendencia)

In this day is this profecy coming to pass. I testify that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. I'm in an area called Zapallal 1, where we're in the middle of nowhere, and there are hills that top the hills in all my other areas combined. This area's huge... and this ward is functioning better than many wards I've seen in the states.

We had a couple of baptism dates when I entered and we ended yesterday with 8 baptism dates. Mostly youth and kids but we're focusing on finding families. It's difficult because there aren't that many people married, and out here in Zapallal mass weddings don't exist, God has blessed us and I know we'll find them. These Lamanites are blossoming as the rose.

Right now I have 10 rocks in my pockets. My companion does also. We have to carry around these rocks until someone is confirmed. Every rock symbolizes someone, so, as you can imagine.... we have the goal to baptize 20 people this change. I know looking back at my mission it would seem impossible, but we prayed and the Lord wants us to do it. I know that we can help 20 people into the waters of baptism. As of yet we have 0 so we have a lot of work left to do.

I'm grateful for you Papa, Mama, Nana, Eric, and Curtis. Keep working hard.

This week was new. I got here Wednesday in the afternoon and found out where we live! We live on a 45 degree hill. We open the door to walk into a small open area. On the right there are wooden stairs that lead up to a couple of different, small castle looking places, and then we get to our room. We don't actually have a door. It's a metal fence thing that we keep safe with a chain and padlock. It's extremely cold here, but finally we have warm water to shower. Hallelujah!

Elder Pontius in Indy gave me his snow hat because he finished up his mission, so now my ears won't be cold at night. Yes! Honestly Independencia's way behind me now.... I absolutely love this place.

Sometimes I think about all the commandments we have. There's so many. They seem so strict. Even Jesus taught that "He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone..." But to say that we must obey every law that God gives us isn't like the Pharisees!!! Jesus taught something very important. Look at this:

For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.
Behold, he offereth himself a sacrifice for sin, to answer the ends of the law, unto all those who have a broken heart and a contrite spirit; and unto none else can the ends of the law be answered.

I know that we must come unto Him with a broken heart and a contrite spirit.


Elder Layton

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