Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Two Months!

Goiania, Brazil

I fly to the Brazil MTC in less than two months! November 22 is so close now! It seems like forever since I opened my call letter to find out I would be going to Brazil.

Where I will be serving!

The past four months have gone by so slowly. When I read my call and it said that I'd be there on November 23rd, I remember thinking that that was sooooooo far away. Now it's almost here! And I'm getting nervous. And excited! It's going to be a great two years for me. I can't wait to see what my life will be like for the next two years. I am excited to see myself grow spiritually and to see my personality change.

The capital city of Goiania

I'm excited to meet my mission president and to meet all my different companions. I'm excited to see a new part of the world that I've never even thought about visiting before! Whenever I was asked where I wanted to go on my mission, I was thinking I'd like to go somewhere in Europe or Australia or New Zealand. South America never even crossed my mind. And now I'm going to Brazil! I think that just proves that God sends His missionaries where they need to be, not where they want to be. But I'm sure that once I get to Brazil and start teaching the Gospel I will want to be there more than anywhere else in the world. I'm very excited to start this new chapter in my life!


Elder Spencer David Eastwood

Sunday, September 25, 2011

My Favorite Scripture

“Therefore let your light so shine before this people, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father who is in heaven.” – (3 Nephi 12:16)

The very first time that I read the Book of Mormon all the way through, many scriptures stood out to me, as they would to anyone who reads the Book of Mormon. But I always remembered the sixteenth verse of the twelfth chapter of the third book of Nephi. Even after finishing the rest of the book and the several hundred other verses, 3 Nephi 12:16 was embedded into the front of my mind.

The Spirit spoke to me so strongly when I first read this scripture and I remember writing down in my journal what I felt about it when I first read it:

“Today I read 3rd Nephi, which has so many amazing stories that it is hard to pick just one to talk about. But the Spirit impressed a certain verse on me so strongly, that I can’t think of anything else to write down. The verse is 3 Nephi 12: 16. I love this scripture so much…I think it may very well be my favorite scripture.”

The verse is a simple one, but I think it has such a strong message. Every person in this world has so many special gifts and talents that our Heavenly Father has given them. If we use these talents to complete good works, we will truly glorify our Father in Heaven. Heavenly Father is so proud of His children, especially when we choose the right.

Imagine how happy He is when we resist temptation and do the right thing. Imagine how happy we will be when we choose the right, when we help those in need, and when we spread this wonderful Gospel to those who need it. Imagine Heavenly Father appearing to us in front of a multitude of people and announcing as He did in 3 Nephi 11:7, saying, “Behold my Beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased, in whom I have glorified my name—hear ye him.”

How amazing would that be, to have our Father in Heaven tell us directly that He is pleased with us, and that we have glorified His name? The Lord probably will not directly appear to us, but we have something just as wonderful here with us: The Holy Ghost. The Spirit will confirm and testify to us that the Lord is well pleased with us.

It really is not hard to let your light shine or to show people your good works. Too often I think we are embarrassed or even scared to do these simple things, and I don’t know why we are. Why wouldn’t we want to have that great knowledge that our Heavenly Father is pleased with us and that we have glorified his name?

To those who are embarrassed or nervous, I promise you that nothing bad will come from letting your light shine! The Lord wants us all to be happy and He will never, ever lead us astray. He is always pleased with us when we follow His commandments and do what is right.

So let your light shine before all people, that they may see your good works! Bear your testimony at the next fast and testimony meeting in your ward! Share your favorite scripture with your friends! Some of the greatest spiritual experiences I have ever had were when I was having spiritual discussions with my best friends. There is an amazing spiritual power when a group of friends get together and confirm and bear testimony of the truth of this Gospel to each other.

I promise you that the Lord will be pleased with you and that He will let you know it. The Spirit will confirm it to you. Pray for strength from the Lord, that you will be able to share your light with everyone around you. I promise that He will help you.

I testify that the things I have shared are true! I have seen them in my life. I have both seen and felt the blessings that come from sharing testimonies, reading the scriptures, following the commandments, and glorifying the name of our Heavenly Father. I know that the Book of Mormon is true and I challenge everyone that has not prayerfully and faithfully read it to do so. You will receive spiritual guidance that you will not be able to find anywhere else and you will be blessed immensely for it! Read the Book of Mormon and find a scripture that really speaks to you and share it with your friends! Tell them why you love it so much and what you think it means. Testify of its truthfulness. You will be blessed and the Spirit will confirm to you that the Lord is well pleased.


Elder Spencer Eastwood.