Sunday, December 26, 2010

December 24, 2010 (week 6)

Merry Christmas famila!,

This years Christmas is going to be a little different. Instead of being with people I love, this Christmas is more for the people I will fall in love with! The people I will meet on my mission, the people who don't know the meaning of Christmas beyond wrapping paper and presents. I thought I knew the meaning of Christmas when I was at home but I am realizing more and more I had no idea. I was really focused on what I wanted or what I wanted to get people. Than it hit me here at the MTC there is only one "I" in Christmas and it is in Christ. I guess I am starting to see that since I have been out here away from the material things it is easier to see the true meaning of Christmas. I ask myself where is the, I, in Christ this year? I pray that I am closer to him then I have ever been before. The only present I can give my Heavenly Father right now is myself. The presents (blessings) he will give me are more valuable then anything I can buy or receive. I hope I do not sound ungrateful for all of your presents and treats you have been sending to me, because I am really grateful for them all! I am getting chubby because they all taste so good. I love to show and share all of the presents you have sent to me! But the greatest gift you have given me this Christmas is not from the presents, but so much more than that. It is the love and support the presents represent. I love how when I think I'm tired and would rather daydream or when the alarm rings I would rather stay in bed then turn over and start praying, all I have to do is think of all of you and say, I will try as hard as possible for them and my Savior because that is what they would want me to do. I love you all so much and thank you for all the help you give me. I feel all of your love through your letters and could not do it without you. Something pretty cool happened last Sunday I would like to share with you all. A man named, Ted Gibbons came and instead of a talk he gave like a reenactment of the things that happened in Willard Richards life. I think it is called a monologue? Willard Richards was a loyal friend and strong member of the church in the time of Joseph Smith. I did not know who he was before Brother Gibbons gave this fireside but I won't ever forget him because of this fireside. Brother Gibbons talked about Willard Richards and what he did in his life but he presented it in a way that it was Brother Richards actual words like from a journal that Willard Richards must have written. He told about his relationship with Joseph Smith and all the things they had been through together. The most moving part was when he spoke about Carthage and the things that happened there. He explained how Joseph got there, why he went, the protection he was promised and all the times the prophet prophesied, "I am going like a lamb to the slaughter." When he, Brother Gibbons, explained the story from Brother Richards words the spirit was so strong that by the time he finished no one in that room could deny that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. He told us after Hyrum had been shot and died the prophet walked over to his brother and said, "my dear sweet brother Hyrum", while crying. Then he looked at Willard Richards and smiled and began to run for the window. The prophet was shot several times as he fell out the window. He lived like a hero he died as a hero. I know without a doubt that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. This is my testimony in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

I love you all, have a great Christmas. I miss you and love you very much!!

Elder Brown

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