Janelle's e-mails to her family

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The things I'm grateful for...

Hey there family.

Being as this week is Thanksgiving (dia de gracias) and all, I thought that I´m going to do my own little celebrating with this letter this week. (Chileans obviously don´t celebrate this holiday, so I´m going to party it up with my companion...we´re thinking we´ll make french toast...we don´t have time nor money to make a feast...pero es lo que hay. :) Anyway...so this letter is going to be a carta de gracias. :) Que lindo, cierto...

Anyway this week I am was so grateful for the opportunities to work full time in the work of the Lord. I was grateful for the citas that we had, and for the opportunity to learn and grow each day. I was grateful to have an intercambio with my mamma Aponte this Friday and to learn from her incredible Spirit and example...and I am grateful for the hamburger that we bought and shared...it was delicious. :) (see picture)

I am grateful for the opportunity to work in Punta Arenas in the Gran Barrio de Magallanes. I am so grateful for the opportunity to work with them and learn and grow with them during this short time that I get to be a part of their very special ward and family. In answer to Mom´s question, they have on average about 30ish people that attend the ward. They are all very special Saints, we just need more of them...I´m grateful for the opportunity to help some of the menos activos remember what the Lord hopes for them. In answer to Mom´s other question...Claudia is as active as ever. She qualqueir challenge, but she still comes every week. She´s a great example to the ward. I get to sign for her, and I am so grateful to learn more of that language. It has really come in handy too because in the last few days, we contacted two separate people that are deaf and I could speak with them and invite them to hear this beautiful message of the Restoration. I´m sure it wasn´t as pretty as it should be, but they understood what I was saying! Pretty neat.

I´m grateful for my mission. I am so grateful for the blessing that I have to be trusted in this work. I don´t know why I´m trusted with it...sometimes I don´t feel even close to adequate, but I´m grateful for the opportunity to learn to rely on the Lord more. I´m so grateful for His patience and love for me. I´m grateful for His plan and His love for His children here in my sector. I´m grateful for the opportunity to seek those that are prepared to hear this Gospel. I am grateful for every beautiful moment that I have seen in the mission. I am grateful for every opportunity to serve and love these people. I am grateful for their Spirits and their examples to me. I am grateful for what they are teaching me. I am grateful for every challenge that I have ever had in my life, and I am so grateful for the refining process that we get to experience in this life so that we can change and be molded into what the Lord wants us to become. I´m grateful for the change that is taking place in my life, as well as the change that is taking place in the lives of those we work with. I am grateful for a great mission president and first lady :) I am grateful for the companion(s) that I have and that I have had. For all they have taught me through example. So great.

I´m grateful for my beautiful family. I love you all more than I ever thought possible. I´m grateful for the opportunity that I had to be raised in our home. It is sacred to me, and the lessons that I learned there are sacred to me as well. Thank you for your love and support to me. Thank you for making this possible for me. Thank you for it all. There is not enough time in the world to express the gratitude I have for you. Thank you for raising me in a way that would qualify me for this work. It means everything to me. Thank you to my friends and extended family as well. You all are so great at praying for me. Thank you. Thank you for your letters, and your love.

But more than anything I am grateful for the Savior and my Heavenly Father. I am grateful for all that they have blessed me with. I´m grateful for their perfect love and their flawless patience in me and in us. I am so grateful for this opportunity in my life to come to know them better. I am so grateful to know what I know about them, and to have the opportunity to live and learn and share more about them. I am so grateful that I have been blessed to know this flawless Gospel of Jesus Christ. I love learning more about it, and I love sharing it with others. I love seeing the change that this simple knowledge makes in the lives of the Children of God. I am and always will be eternally grateful for the Atonement of Jesus Christ. I am grateful that He took upon His perfect self my sins, so that I can have the hope to one day live with Him and all those that I love in this life once again.

How blessed I am. I hope that I never forget the blessings that I have been given. I don´t know why I am so blessed...but I am happy to share these blessings with others. It´s so beautiful.

Well, there´s a very small fraction of the things that I am grateful this Thanksgiving....man, writing that letter felt good. I need to do that every week! ;) I think we would all be a lot better off if we sat down and thought about the blessings that we have been given. It just feels great...there´s not enough time or words to tell it all.

Thank you. Enjoy your Thanksgiving Holiday. Save some for me.

All the love in the world. Les amo hasta los cielos...y aun mas.

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