Tuesday, March 21, 2017

P-day 26: Day 188 - "I feel so blessed to have this opportunity to really come to know my Father in heaven..."

I'm grateful that Nathanael is in a good place. He is happy and working hard and excited about what he is doing. As a mom, that's all I really want for him. It sounds like he is still having experiences that will help him grow and progress which also makes me happy.

I'm grateful that Heavenly Father loves each of us enough and is aware of each of us enough that He allows us to have experiences that stretch and grow us. Without those struggles, we would never become the people He envisions that we could be. It really is a sign of His confidence in us when we are required to do hard things. I'm proud of Nathanael for humbly understanding that his struggles will lead to growth and that they are a sign that he is loved by his Heavenly Father.

Enjoy his letter!

Hello parents!!!!!!!!!!!!

We have seen so many miracles this week. Uh, to avoid using many words...

Woohoo!!!!!!!! We baptized our investigator Flavia!! And boy let me tell you it was a miracle. She had a lot of struggles with the word of wisdom but we've been working with her. We were really worried she was going to fall back into her old habits this weekend but she stayed strong and well, you can see the picture. She said she felt really light and peaceful and stuff like that. So awesome!! Stuff like this is so great. I can't even explain it.

I had a couple of pretty special moments this weekend. When I saw Flavia get out of the car on Saturday night (she was about 10 minutes late to the baptism and I was SO WORRIED she wasn't going to show up) I felt such joy. I don't know if I've ever felt so much joy in my whole life. I had a similar experience on Sunday right after she was confirmed. I felt so much joy. I felt the Spirit really strongly and I had the very strong feeling that I had a very real part in her making this decision and I have made a positive mark on her eternal life. It's indescribable. I have never felt that feeling before and I literally don't know if I've ever felt so happy in my whole life. I can't emphasize this enough. What an incredible weekend.

The adversary really worked on us this week. Elder Guimarães told me on Friday that this had been the worst week of his whole mission. For me it wasn't quite that bad but it was difficult. The work was hard for us. But we pushed through and our hearts were in the right place and it was really amazing to see that we had miracles happen despite our imperfections. I'm so thankful for that.

I hope you guys had a great week. It sounds like you're doing good. As always I miss you guys, sometimes a lot, but we're all in good hands. 

I've discovered something about my mission, or at least it's something I'm thinking about. My mission has been stripping down all the stuff that's not "me." I'm figuring out who I really am, and unfortunately it's kind of disappointing. I'm realizing that I'm a pretty normal dude -- pretty average, pretty disobedient, pretty proud, pretty ugly (just kidding), and pretty normal to sum things up. And what's troubling to me is that I'm very imperfect. I'm a sinner. At least I'm a repentant sinner, but man the Lord has really been very blunt in showing me my weaknesses. (This is hard to explain in english!) When I was set apart president Cutler blessed me that the roots of my testimony would grow deeply on my mission and that this would bless me to be strong during the hard parts of my life. That made me a little nervous at the time because when I went on my mission I had a strong testimony and I knew it! But here I'm on my own more than ever. Now it's just me and the Lord most of the time. And my relationship with Heavenly Father is becoming so personal as a result of this, which puts a lot more responsibility on my shoulders. It's a weighty privelige but it makes a man realize how weak and sinful he really is. I feel so blessed to have this opportunity to really come to know my Father in heaven even more. And I really feel like even though I'm weak and normal and blah blah blah, this mission can be the stage where a lot of these discovered weaknesses can become strengths through the atonement of Jesus Christ. I hope. I'll keep you posted on the progress. 

I hope all that makes sense. What I'm trying to say is that I feel like the Lord is just trying to "clean house" in terms of my personal growth, that it's a process, and that I shouldn't be discouraged. And along the way, I'm growing closer to Him. What a blessing!

Love you guys. I'll talk to you soon.
Elder Sederholm

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