Monday, August 4, 2014

Now Let Us Rejoice!

Hi! This has been a really good week! Minus the fact that I'm apparently allergic to Canadian Mosquitoes and have dozens of bites the size of quarters! ha.. not sure what to do about that, but oh well! :P  Anyway, this week I have gained so much personal revelation and knowledge and received so much strength from the scriptures and the reason why is because of you.  Every. Single. Time. I learned something or came to a realization or felt strong or felt happy, the Spirit whispered to me that it was because of the prayers of my family.  I believe and know that's true.  I've never felt your prayers more in my life than I have this past week.  I want you to know that God hears and answers prayers and he has heard your cries and showed mercy upon me and I am so grateful for your faith.  Thank you so much for supporting me and loving me.  I truly have the best.  Your faith is making me whole and I feel so close to you right now.  When I heard that you fasted for me yesterday, I began to cry and it confirmed that everything I had been feeling all week was true.  I have the most incredible family in the entire world.  I love you so much! If you only knew!  I wish I could explain to you, all that I learned, and one day I will, but for now, I will just share with you one of my insights... So as some of you may know,  for that last 8 months of my mission I have been dealing with a lot of physical pain.  I have never been in so much pain or felt so weak in my entire life.  The agony, suffering, and torment I have experienced can only be understood by my Redeemer.  It has been said that most people come to understand the Atonement because they must repent and be sanctified through the blood of the Lamb.  I was humbly told that I came to know and understand the Atonement and who my Savior is because I was exactly obedient to the Will of the Father and his Son Jesus Christ, and I was privileged to feel a very tiny bit how the Savior felt the night in the Garden of Gethsemane.  Sacred experiences have testified to me that that is true and that I had faith to be healed, but the Lord had greater plans for me and knew that if I endured this trial, I would become even more like him.  I know that is why we are here.  I know we are preparing to become like our Father in Heaven.  I know that everything I have gone through has been for my good and for my experience.  I am forever grateful for my mission.  Yes it has been extremely hard, and painful at times, but I can testify to you that on the other hand, I have never felt so much redeeming love and Joy in all my years.  It reminds me of the Scriptures in Alma 36 (that I know were written for me) that states:   
 20 And oh, what joy, and what marvelous light I did behold; yea, my soul was filled with joy as exceeding as was my pain!

 21 Yea, I say unto you, my FAMILY, that there could be nothing so exquisite and so bitter as were my pains. Yea, and again I say unto you, my FAMILY, that on the other hand, there can be nothing so exquisite and sweet as was my joy.

 22 Yea, methought I saw, even as our father Lehi saw, God sitting upon his throne, surrounded with numberless concourses of angels, in the attitude of singing and praising their God; yea, and my soul did long to be there.

 23 But behold, my limbs did receive their strength again, and I stood upon my feet, and did manifest unto the people that I had been born of God.

 24 Yea, and from that time even until now, I have labored without ceasing, that I might bring souls unto repentance; that I might bring them to taste of the exceeding joy of which I did taste; that they might also be born of God, and be filled with the Holy Ghost.

 25 Yea, and now behold, O my FAMILY, the Lord doth give me exceedingly great joy in the fruit of my labors;

 26 For because of the word which he has imparted unto me, behold, many have been born of God, and have tasted as I have tasted, and have seen eye to eye as I have seen; therefore they do know of these things of which I have spoken, as I do know; and the knowledge which I have is of God.

 27 And I have been supported under trials and troubles of every kind, yea, and in all manner of afflictions; yea, God has delivered me from prison, and from bonds, and from death; yea, and I do put my trust in him, and he will still deliver me.

 28 And I know that he will raise me up at the last day, to dwell with him in glory; yea, and I will praise him forever.

My dear Sweet family I know what Alma said is true.  The pain. The sweat. The tears.  IT IS WORTH IT!  I have found so much joy in the fruit of my labors! I love my converts with all my heart, but I think the biggest conversion that has taken place has been my own.  I know who I am.  I know God's plan. I know that he loves me. I know that I am his daughter. I know that I am more than enough. I know that it is only through the Savior that I can return and live with my Heavenly Father and my family again.  I am fully converted to the Gospel of Jesus Christ and I am diligently committed to fight the good fight until the very end.  And when that day comes and I am kneeling down before the Son of God, and when I get to feel the nail marks in His hands and feet, I will know no better than I do now that Jesus is the Christ and that salvation comes only through Him and in no other way.  I hope that if you don't already know that, one day you will come to the same knowledge that I have, and you will taste of the fruit of the tree of life because it is most precious and sweet above all other fruit. How do you come to this knowledge? Alma Chapter 36 begins and ends by telling us that, "inasmuch as ye shall keep the commandments of God ye shall prosper in the land."  If you cross reference 'prosper'  It will lead you to Joshua chapter 1.  coincidence? I think not.. prospering is being strong and very courageous:)  We are then promised that if we do this, the Lord our God will be with us whithersoever we go! So be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed!  The next chapter in Alma teaches us that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass.  I know that is true.  I know following the commandments will help us be happy and will lead to eternal life.  I love you all so much.  Thank you for being my family!

5 stars:) Work iT!! :]
Love Your Sister Missionary, Sister Jaynanne Petersen 

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