Sunday, January 6, 2013

E-mail December 17, 2012

Yo! I don’t have much time to write so it will be short. Christmas call = Tuesday around 9 am to 12 pm your time.  Not really sure what time to be exact. Sorry. We will be at two different members houses on Christmas Day so I am not sure which one we will call from. And I’m not sure whether it will be skype or a phone call. I’m pulling for skype but we will see. Make sure you have your phones on early Christmas morning and throughout the afternoon. Look for an email Christmas Eve or on Christmas with the exact time. I will try to send an email in advance so y’all can know. Only time will tell. I only have an hour. No longer! 

All is well over here on the other side of the world. I have learned countless lessons these last few weeks. The main thing I have learned is CONFIDENCE. I must have confidence in the Lord and in the Spirit so I can be an instrument in his hands and be led to his French children who are ready to receive the Gospel! That is no easy task. But it has, can, and will be done. He didn’t send me here to just make seeds. He sent me here to reap them!  Obviously seeds will be made in the process because not everyone will accept the gospel the first time. But you catch my drift. But being honest with myself, not a whole lot of reaping is going to take place until I can learn French and communicate well with the people, master the art of finding people to teach, and fine tune my relationship with the Lord and the Spirit. I am really starting to learn the importance of the phrase, "JUST DO IT."  Nike got it right!  I still struggle with French but I have grown better by leaps and bounds these last few weeks all thanks to JUST DOIN IT. Don’t ask me why but the first three transfers I was scared out of my mind to talk on the phone (I think you know why... I couldn’t understand a word the people were saying hahaha) But these last two weeks I have really become better at talking on the phone, because one day I decided to JUST DO IT. SOOO simple.  I still don’t understand all the things they are saying to me on the phone but I’m getting pretty good at pretending I understand haha but I can always get the main point of what they are saying. The Lord helps me to understand because I’m JUST DOIN IT.  I will never be able to communicate fluently with these French people unless I talk with them, unless I JUST DO IT.  Yesterday I was talking to my district leader on the phone and he asked if I had any questions. I asked him "how can I become better at contacting so my comp and I can find more investigators here in Chartres?"  His answer was simple but full of so much truth.  He said, "JUST DO IT."   Such a good answer!!   Life is so much easier than we make it sometimes.  If life is hard and we want it to become easier, we have to JUST DO IT.  If you want to be happy, JUST DO IT.  If you want to learn French, learn how to swim, or learn how to cook... you gotta JUST DO IT.  I am so grateful for my mother and father who have taught me this important truth throughout my whole life. Sorry it didn’t catch on until just now! Désolé! 

The Race

Whenever I start to hang my head in front of failure’s face,
my downward fall is broken by the memory of a race.
A children’s race, young boys, young men; how I remember well,
excitement sure, but also fear, it wasn’t hard to tell.
They all lined up so full of hope, each thought to win that race
or tie for first, or if not that, at least take second place.
Their parents watched from off the side, each cheering for their son,
and each boy hoped to show his folks that he would be the one.
The whistle blew and off they flew, like chariots of fire,
to win, to be the hero there, was each young boy’s desire.
One boy in particular, whose dad was in the crowd,
was running in the lead and thought “My dad will be so proud.”
But as he speeded down the field and crossed a shallow dip,
the little boy who thought he’d win, lost his step and slipped.
Trying hard to catch himself, his arms flew everyplace,
and midst the laughter of the crowd he fell flat on his face.
As he fell, his hope fell too; he couldn’t win it now.
Humiliated, he just wished to disappear somehow.
But as he fell his dad stood up and showed his anxious face,
which to the boy so clearly said, “Get up and win that race!”
He quickly rose, no damage done, behind a bit that’s all,
and ran with all his mind and might to make up for his fall.
So anxious to restore himself, to catch up and to win,
his mind went faster than his legs. He slipped and fell again.
He wished that he had quit before with only one disgrace.
“I’m hopeless as a runner now, I shouldn’t try to race.”
But through the laughing crowd he searched and found his father’s face
with a steady look that said again, “Get up and win that race!”
So he jumped up to try again, ten yards behind the last.
“If I’m to gain those yards,” he thought, “I’ve got to run real fast!”
Exceeding everything he had, he regained eight, then ten…
but trying hard to catch the lead, he slipped and fell again.
Defeat! He lay there silently. A tear dropped from his eye.
“There’s no sense running anymore! Three strikes I’m out! Why try?
I’ve lost, so what’s the use?” he thought. “I’ll live with my disgrace.”
But then he thought about his dad, who soon he’d have to face.
“Get up,” an echo sounded low, “you haven’t lost at all,
for all you have to do to win is rise each time you fall.
Get up!” the echo urged him on, “Get up and take your place!
You were not meant for failure here! Get up and win that race!”
So, up he rose to run once more, refusing to forfeit,
and he resolved that win or lose, at least he wouldn’t quit.
So far behind the others now, the most he’d ever been,
still he gave it all he had and ran like he could win.
Three times he’d fallen stumbling, three times he rose again.
Too far behind to hope to win, he still ran to the end.
They cheered another boy who crossed the line and won first place,
head high and proud and happy — no falling, no disgrace.
But, when the fallen youngster crossed the line, in last place,
the crowd gave him a greater cheer for finishing the race.
And even though he came in last with head bowed low, un-proud,
you would have thought he’d won the race, to listen to the crowd.
And to his dad he sadly said, “I didn’t do so well.”
“To me, you won,” his father said. “You rose each time you fell.”
And now when things seem dark and bleak and difficult to face,
the memory of that little boy helps me in my own race.
For all of life is like that race, with ups and downs and all.
And all you have to do to win is rise each time you fall.
And when depression and despair shout loudly in my face,
another voice within me says, “Get up and win that race!”
Life is full of ups and downs!  That’s the way its supposed to be!  Keep on keepin on. That poem is a life changer. Read it. Ponder it. Love it!  I do.  Have a good week and remember don’t forget the WHY of celebrating Christmas.  Opening presents is a part of it but it’s significance is of so little importance! Christmas is all about the Savior. His simple but crucial birth.  His perfect life.  And his infinite and eternal atonement. For me it’s just not about his birth. It’s about all of the things he did for us!  We would be forever lost without our elder brother Jésus-Christ!  N'oubliezzz passs!  Stay awesome!  Et que Dieu vous benisse. Can’t wait to hear your beautiful voices on Tuesday!!!

P.S.  Anne Smiths address? I need to write her.  And Whitney’s address? And yes I got the package! Thanks! You never cease to amaze me. You and dad are the world’s greatest parents. If I had a blue ribbon to give away for first place you’d win. But I have no blue ribbon so you'll just have to take my word for it. Y’all rock. Its doctrine!  Luvz.  I have a package coming your way soon full of lots of goodies. I probably won’t send it till after Christmas.  Sorry!  You will have a late Christmas present!

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