Family and friends,
Here are the pictures from the baptism two weeks ago :) I forgot to send them but here they are better late than never... this was a truly special baptismal service because we got to see Roberto (who just barely was baptized and received the Priesthood) baptize his son Roberto Junior :) they are a wonderful family and they are so excited about living the gospel its inspiring every time that we visit them to see that they've been studying the scriptures together, praying together, learning new hymns together in the car and often times when we walk by their house we can hear them playing church music and we can hear their little son Jordy singing at the top of his lungs very off key but with great enthusiasm, much like the way my father sings :) love ya dad!
Roberto's wife Miriam is great and we've really made great progress with her and gained her trust but she is one tough cookie. She's a psychologist, has lots of doubts, and says that she won't believe something if she can't see it... that makes developing her faith in Christ a bit tricky as I'm sure you can imagine. We've been applying Alma 32 and trying to help her understand that she has to give the gospel a chance. She has to go to church, read the scriptures, and pray sincerely (nourish the seed) so that she can gain a testimony of this gospel (the seed will grow and bring forth fruit). It's not going to be easy but I know as we keep working hard and having patience and having faith that she will be converted and baptized. To be honest this was a tough week with lots of frustrating challenges and investigators that aren't progressing but I'm learning and growing from these trials :) my good friend Jamie Smith wrote me a letter a while back and she shared a great quote that I still remember and think about often. She shared with me a trial that she had been having and shared these powerful words, ¨I've experienced a completely different side of the Atonement, and I appreciate my life and having the gospel in it so much more. I know that the Refiner's fire will always burn brightly, and it is the way we handle our trials that allow it to create or consume us.¨ Wow! I especially love that last part because it is so true! All of us will have tough times and we get to decide whether we will turn toward Christ or turn away from him, whether we will redouble our efforts and work harder or get overwhelmed and slack off, whether we will endure or give up :) we get to decide if the trial will create or consume us. I know that when we maintain an eternal perspective in confronting our trials that we will be able to overcome our trials and learn from them. Part of enduring to the end is never getting discouraged and always facing adversity positively with a determined smile :) Thanks Jamie for your words of encouragement and thanks to everyone who has written me and supports me :)
Keep enduring joyfully to the end! Have patience and have hope. Life is good. Remember that God wants us to have joy :)