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One Year Anniversary

Hello all:

Well, Elder Chapman and I have reached our year mark. 6 days ago last year, we entered the Provo Missionary Training Center and began on this journey that seems to have passed in a the blink of an eye. To quote Jacob the Nephite prophet, "the time passed away with us, and also our lives passed away like as it were unto us a dream" (Jacob 7:26). I've never seen time fly by so quickly as on a mission. There really is no experience that can quite compare with this "marvelous work and a wonder."

And boy are the days flying by now! With autumn setting in, the sun is starting to be much less willing to hang around and help us out. It sets probably around 8:00 PM now. That poses a problem because we're asked to be out working until 9:00. Back in summer when that hour was still dusk, this was no problem, but I've found that people judge time more by the sunlight than by their clocks. We can always expect some angry neighborhoods after sunset... "What do you mean you're sharing a message about Jesus Christ??? It's night time! Knocking doors, bugging neighbors, and Jesus Christ are not for the night time!! SLAM!"

In reality that's probably the most depressing thing. When we hit winter, the sun will start to disappear around 6, and we'll be facing angry parents for 3 solid hours each night. But as we go to tract our streets for the 4th time in 2 months (we have a really small area), although the majority of the people are just starting to get really irritated by us coming by every 2 weeks "in the middle of the night," we are still seeing small miracles; people are starting to know us by name, and even though they don't want to hear the Gospel, we're starting to become almost friends. Who knows what God will do with that? To those who are hostile towards us coming by after sunset, we can only respond to ourselves, "It's true isn't it-- Then what else matters?"

We may be annoying the palabrotas out of some people (and boy, do we hear about it sometimes), but we know that what we're doing is a good work, and that day or night, our message can bless the world. It doesn't matter what time it is, how light it is, or what they think, we know that what we're sharing is the most important news this world has ever heard. God speaks. He loves us. He had revealed additional Scripture. He has called a Prophet. He is coming (and soon-ish). He speaks to us individually. We can know His will. He loves us.

We as missionaries and as members are participating in the most important work in the universe, God Himself saying it is His work and His glory "to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man" (Moses 1:39). We, in a concentrated, backbreaking way, get to participate in that-- how great a trust and how great a blessing to provide such service to our Heavenly Father. Call us fanatics, call us idiots, call us freaks, call us brainwashed, and call us weirdos (heck, we'd be glad if someone would just call us, period), but we know what we;re sharing is true, and though earth and heaven pass away, it will not. "The truth of God will go forth boldly, nobly and independent," and we will do all we (legally) can to take that message to every creature under the sun... whether it has set or not!

I know that this Church is true. I know that Joseph Smith is a Prophet of God, and that God called him to do His work. I know that the Prophet today has called me to help for two years in that. I bear my witness of this to the world, and more especially to Colorado, and that, in the name Jesus Christ.

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