Thursday, August 7, 2014

4 August 2014   Last Week

Hello Family and Friends,
Carlos and Sheron were married and baptized this week!!! Wednesday they were registered as a married couple, Friday were baptized, Saturday was the bishop's blessing in the chapel, and Sunday they were confirmed members of the church. What a week it was because everyday was dedicated to them getting married and baptized. All in all everything went smoothly with the help of your prayers and the willing members of the ward. Carlos and Sheron are super excited to be part of the church and for having found the truth. They bore their testimonies this past Sunday sharing their individual convictions of the truthfulness of the church.

While I was sitting in the sacrament room I felt overwhelmed by the spirit. I remember looking around the congregation and seeing 3 young men that we had baptized passing the sacrament with brand new suits on. Looking to the other side I saw some other youth that we baptized or helped to remain active. I was singing hymns with our recent convert Maria, and then Carlos and Sheron were confirmed and bore their testimonies. It was very emotional to see the fruits of our work and to be humbled knowing that we are just instruments in the hands of our Lord, helping to bring his children back to him. I bore my last testimony in sacrament meeting to the congregation and I mentioned how I saw people's lives molded, and while molding the lives of others my own life was molded significantly. Jesus Christ is our master and he can mold us we let him. This I came to understand while on my mission. I gave thanks to the members for all that they had done for me and my companions.

Friday I had my last interview with President Castro. It was one of the more spiritual experiences of the mission. He asked a lot of divine questions that caused me to reflect on my life and what I need to do when I arrive home. He gave me a picture of myself that he uses while doing the transfers and behind this picture has all my areas and companions. He told me to look at that picture of myself, which was taken while I was in the MTC, and then tell him how that missionary in the photo changed until this point in time. I won't say that I am 100% different than I was before but there was an incredible change in my heart while serving the Lord these 2 years. I am more confident, I have more faith, I am extremely grateful, and I see myself as an agent now instead of an object which only receives the action from others. More than anything I am now committed to this gospel and I never will deviate from this path, it doesn't matter the obstacle I will continue forward. I learned to love others and to love God and Jesus Christ and to show this love for them.

I can't believe that my mission is coming to an end it just hasn't phased me yet. One thing is certain is that even though the badge will be taken off my chest I will never stop being a missionary. There is a lot of work to be done at home and so many people that I neglected to show the gospel. Yes, it will be sad to leave the people that I learned to love here in Rio Grande do Sul but I have the hope that this love will only expand to the people that await me wherever it is that I go in life. I will do my best to keep in contact will everyone that I met here, the friendships are eternal and are part of me now. I am excited to see my family once again. I can't even describe the feeling for them that I have kept locked away in my heart these past two years. I know that when I see their faces that lock is going burst open and it is going to be a mushy mess in the airport, but I don't care love is love and I can't contain it anymore. I hope I will be able to write one more email next week but if not know that these were in fact the best two years of my life, however it is only the beginning.
I love you all,
Thanks for all the support,
I will see you soon,

Elder Miller
28 July 2014

Tuesday I bore my testimony together with the other missionaries that are leaving the mission. It was a zone conference so there were quite a few missionaries present.

My testimony was very simple. I counseled the missionaries to become agents, or in other words, do much good with their own free agency and not wait to be commanded to do good deeds. Also, I told them to love their companions, learn to put the needs of their companions first and then attend to you own. I gave the advice that if they could find a christ-like attribute in their companion and then learn to develop that attribute in themselves they would be a lot happier. If you are not happy it will be much more difficult to invite the spirit in your lessons and the spirit is everything. Therefore, unity is essential in your companionship, if you don't have it forget about teaching with power. Then I went on to bear my testimony that God watches over us and that his love is so profound for all of us that he sent his most perfect son to the world to live, teach, suffer, die, and then live again in order to break the chains of death and allow us the opportunity to stand before god's presence, without stain, worthy to enter into his heavenly home. In addition, Joseph Smith was truly a prophet of God with the mission of reestablishing God's kingdom on Earth, and that there is a prophet and other special witnesses of Jesus Christ here in our days. I gave thanks to President Castro, Sister Castro and all the companions that I had. 2 of them were present. I mentioned that I love and am grateful for missionary work especially the missionaries that introduced our family to the church. If they had not given 2 years of their lives where would I be today? I am eternally in debt to them and I hope that I have had this kind of impact on the people I met during my mission. The gospel is everything to me now that my eyes have been opened.


All of your prayers have paid off because Saturday we had the baptism of Lucas. By wednsday we still were not sure if he would be baptized or not because of his parents permission. While we were eating with a member, who is Lucas's Sunday school teach and returned missionary, I had the thought of inviting him to teach Lucas's parents and ask for permisson to baptize Lucas. It was perfect and the member hit it off with Lucas's parents and we were able to teach them well about the importance of baptism and they allowed him to follow christ example and enter in the waters of baptism. They went to watch him be baptized Saturday and I am sure that they felt the spirit.


Tomorrow Carlos and Sheron will be registered as a married couple then Friday night will be their baptisms, and Saturday will be their marriage cerimony in the chapel. We are stoked for this to happen and it will be a great way to close the final chapter of the mission. I am sure these last two weeks will be full of work and some mixed feeling about leaving the mission. I know that it won't be easy to just one hour to next stop being a full time missionary but I will be honest that I am anxious to see my family and get my life rolling. When the mission concludes it will then be time to put everything I learnt into practice. The mission is the MTC for life and I finally feel prepared.

 Lots of Love,

Elder Miller