Well first off, HAPPY NEW YEARS EVE!! Where did 2012 go? For reals though. It's crazy how much time flies. I want to first do some "thank you cards" (haha you know, like Jimmy Fallon), anyways, Thank you to the Barnes family for the wonderful package you guys sent to me. And especially the little cards, I hope to be able to send you guys a letter soon but we've been so utterly busy I haven't had much time to write, but it's coming i promise. Also thank you to the West family as well. I recieve your picture and card and I appreciate it. I will get back and write to you guys soon as well. Also, another thank you to the McNeil's and WIlsons for the wonderful Christmas cards I recieved from them. I really appreciate all of them.
What an amazing crazy busy week it has been! Christmas was so amazing. Thank you for the packages and the presents. I realized I don't need any more sweets for the next 6 months because I have enough until then. Thank you for the letters mom and dad. I love hearing from you. It truly brightens up my week. The best Christmas present was seeing all of you guys. (I do want you to know, I did have a break down the next day from it, but we'll keep that between us :) ) Seriously though, seeing all of you and Grant and Tacy was so great! It's good to see you are all doing good. Because I'm doing great over here. It is not easy but it's one of the most fun things I've ever done. I'm really blessed to be here and be serving the Lord. This week was crazy, it has snowed quite a bit here, and out here in NJ, people go crazy with driving and the snow. So we actually had two snow days, banned from going outside, luckily there have been three of us so it wasn't too bad, we made a music video, yes it was church music, and played a little monopoly. It was a lot of fun! These sisters are great! We haven't gotten along the best but we've learned A LOT from eachother. That's for sure.
Church yesterday was incredible. The spirit I feel there is undeniable. I love it. We also got to witness the baptism of Dottie Wright an older lady that was so ready to be baptized. It was Elder Smith (the one I'm related to) and his companion Elder Wedel. It was a beautiful service. I can't wait until we have out baptism. It's going to be fantastic! I don't think it quite hit her until after the service. It's so cool to see! This week has been crazy but since the snow storms and Christmas that was about all that happened.
Transfers are tomorrow. And Sister Galuvao is getting transferred. We found out this morning and it's going to be hard but it's God's will. If I have learned anything on my mission so far it's been that God honestly has a plan for every one of us. And we go through trials to strengthen us. Not to put us down or weaken us, but really to strengthen us. In Mosiah 4:9 it says, "Believe in God; believe that he is, and that he created all tings, both in heaven and in earth; believe that he has all wisdom, and all power, both in heaven and in earth; believe that man doth not comprehend all the things which the Lord can comprehend." Boy, am I grateful for the scriptures, they truly testify of Christ. On every single page. My testimony of the Book of Mormon has been strengthened so much because of reading every day from it's pages. And I encourage you to read it everyday. It will help you come closer to Christ. I can promise you that, because I'm a witness of it.
I also want to encourage each of you to write down some goals you want to accomplish in the next year 2013. I have done it and it's nice to be able to look at my goals and see what I can do to accomplish them. Goals are there to push you a little bit more than you think.
We recieved a little letter from the mission office for Christmas and this Christmas I was really trying to focus on Christ. I read the little letter and it was the final touch I needed to help me really realize what Christmas is all about. It truly isn't about the gifts and the presents, but it truly is about the gift God gave us, his son Jesus Christ. I want to share it with you: "Jesus of Nazareth was no mere mortal. Yet, He made an unusual transition on that first Christmas-he was transformed from God to newborn child. How wondrous is it to truly understand what was packaged in that tiny body held by mother Mary? Oh the magnitude of that sacrifice. That night, God the Son traded his heavenly home with all its celestial adornments for a mortal abode with all its primitive trappings. He, the King of heaven, left a throne to inherit a manger. He exchanged the dominion of God for the dependence of a babe. He gave up power, dominion and the fullness of His glory--for what?--for taunting, mocking humiliation, and subjections. It was a trade of unparalleled dimensions, a condescension of incredible proportions, a descent of incalculable depth. And so, the great Jehovah, creator of worlds without number, infinite in virtue and power, made his entry into the world in swaddling clothes and a manger--all to save each of us." What an incredible blessing it is to realize Christ truly lives and he truly died to each and every one of us. It truly hit home for me and I'm so grateful for my Savior. He knows he and loves me so much. And wants the best for me. And I know he wants the best for you. :)
I love this gospel. I'm continually becoming more and more converted. I love each and every one of you. I'm so grateful for your examples, because truly you are an example to me. I know God loves us and Christ as well. They know what we're going through and when we turn to them, they won't let us down. We may need patience and faith, but they will answer us! Thank you for your support!
Tell everyone in the ward hi from me, in the YSA ward and the home ward. How are the Harvey's doing?
I hope you all have a amazing New Year's, bring on 2013!!! It's going to be a good year! Time flies when your serving the Lord! :)
Love love love you!
Sister Christine Elaine Taylor