Monday, December 22, 2014

Merry Christmas everyone!

Merry Christmas everyone! I love you all so much and I hope this season is filled with love and joy back at home.

Last week was really long. Remember that 12 hour bus ride I had to take? Well, every new missionary has to go to the Immigrations center to become a legal citizen.. that is in Panama City. So Monday night we got on a bus and traveled all night then spent the entire next day in Immigrations because there were a ton of people there. It isnt an exageration. We got there at 8 am and left at 10 pm. We stayed with some sisters in the city that night because there werent any more buses running. So that next morning we got up at 630 and got on a bus and traveled all day. We got back home at 1130 pm... so there went 3 days of my life... but its okay because I have had the chance to really dive into the New Testament. I made a goal while I was in California to read the whole book before Christmas and now I am going back and really studying the Savior and his life and teachings. We have a member who was given a Bible by someone in English and he let me look at it. Whoever owned that book knows so much about the scriptures... I read their notes in Matthew and I couldnt believe the things they had pulled apart. The Savior was perfect. Everything he did and said was specifically for us. I dont remember the details, but I will try to bring my notes next time I email.

The Branch here is really small, but I learned in California how important it is to involve members in missionary work. So from the time I got here I have been trying my hardest to get the members to like me and get them excited about doing their own missionary work, and I think they are starting to. Our Bishop last week asked me to give a talk this last Sunday and I was more than willing to do that. Granted, it was my first talk in Spanish so I had to write it out, but afterward the Bishop told me how he felt the spirit and was really grateful that I was able to do that, then he asked me if I would sing a Christmas song in English at the big Christmas program they were having that night... In my head I definitely said no, but for some reason what came out of my mouth sounded more like a yes... so yesterday I sang at the Christmas program.. my singing voice is a lot better than it used to be. My companion in California taught me how to sing, but still I was nervous. Everyone said I did good though so I guess it wasnt too bad.

I was reading in the Liahona yesterday and I read an article from Elder Holland. He talked about how every missionary and prophet in the scriptures knew that their dispensation would fail. They knew it and yet they still did all they could to build the Kingdom of God because they knew that our dispensation would make it. It hit me hard to think that they are all up there, in heaven, cheering us on. Telling us that we will make it, that we will be the ones responsible to literally show the Savior his church on the Earth. It makes me think of the great confidence they have in us to do all that the Savior has asked.

For years I have been doing this thing where if I am faced with a decision or something tough is going on in my life, I will say a prayer and then I try to picture great grandma and grandpa Jones with me and what they would say, when I read that article of thought of that and how all of our ancestors are in heaven, cheering us on. It gives me great hope and strength to know that we are not alone. In 2 Kings 6 16&17 is one of my favorite lines in all the scriptures. it says Fear not, for they that be with us are more than they that be with them. All we have to do is let the Lord open our eyes to see it.

This Christmas know that each one of you are in my prayers. I pray for the Lord to be with you and for the spirit of Christmas to touch your hearts. I pray for your safety. I pray for your happiness. I pray for Him to answer your prayers. I love each one of you with all my heart and I couldnt do this without you. I pray for each one of us to remember the meaning of Christmas and to feel the Saviors love.

I love you all.
Love, Hermana Eardley

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