Monday, February 29, 2016

02.29.16 The Kingdom of God Upon the Face of the Earth

Hey everybody!

How are you doing?!  Let me just say.. hearing about all of you guys and your accomplishments is crazy.  You guys are all-stars.  I mean come on.. Conner.. the President of the Marriott School of Business!  I didn't even know somebody could do that!  Good on you dear brother!  ¡Hay que echar fuego siempre!  Nate in medical school totally tearing it up!  Sounds like a pretty good dad if you ask me, giving little Robert a bath all the time.  And Karli, pounding out those clinical s!  Uuuusshh!!  You guys are awesome and inspire me to be better each day!

This week was great!  Really, I know that the Lord is smiling on this beautiful place in Costa Rica.  What a blessing it is to be a part of this great latter-day work.  

Elder Carter is such a great companion!  We are working hard and praying hard that the Lord might work His mighty miracles here.  I know that He is.  Lately,  I have been thinking a lot about our faith and the role of the Book of Mormon.  Here in Puerto Jimenez, I feel like I am walking through the Great Apostasy.  Honestly, these people are so confused about God, His nature, and what He wants for them.  We talk to a person in the street about the restored gospel of Jesus Christ, and they have no idea what you are talking about.  They don't know what Priesthood authority is, what a prophet is nor was, what the Bible is and where it came from.  Like I said in my past letters, we have to be super basic.  Nothing less than the brutal truth works with these people.  So, Elder Carter and I talk to each man that we see, and tell them that God is calling them to be a worthy man, and to hold his power and authority to bless their family.  We have been seeing good results with this approach.

On Saturday and Sunday night, here in the center of Puerto Jimenez a bunch of the churches got together for a "campaña."  Basically it is General Conference of evangelical churches, but without Priesthood authority, revelation, or firm doctrine.  Elder Carter and I had to walk by in the way to our visits.  I kid you not, this pastor was screaming into a microphone.  It hurt my ears.  But these people were eating it up.  He yelled "Raise your hands if you feel the Spirit."  Well, we were passing by at that exact moment and he yelled at us "you missionaries in the street raise your hands."  We didn't raise our hands.  We heard him continue to say as we turned the corner on the other side that "there is no religion.. religion is God."  The best part about the whole experience is that we smiled and waved to a pair of our investigators that were at the event as we passed by.. I think they will like our church :)  

We have some great families that are reading the Book of Mormon and praying about it.  We are working hard with them.

Oh how important he Book of Mormon is.  A second witness of the divinity of the risen Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and the doctrine that bears His name.  We are so blessed to have the knowledge of the Book of Mormon and to be able to read and learn from it.  We read with our investigators from the introduction of the Book of Mormon, "Those who gain this divine witness from the Holy Spirit will also come to know by the same power that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world, that Joseph Smith is His revelator and prophet in these last days, and that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the Lord’s kingdom once again established on the earth, preparatory to the Second Coming of the Messiah."  What an amazing promise for each of us.

What I continue to realize more and more is that our church is not like any other church.  It isn't like the rest.  It will not teach you that you can pick and choose the commandments that you would like to follow.  It will not teach you that faith is a passive word.  You will not learn in our church that becoming a follower and desciple of Jesus Christ is easy and takes no effort.  It teaches all of the contrary.  This truly is the kingdom of God upon the face of the earth.

I love you guys so much!!  Keep the faith!  The church is true!

Elder Nelson

Mi amigo mexicano siempre me decia "El reino de Dios sobre la faz de la tierra."

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