Monday, March 18, 2013

Matt #47

Everyone thank you for the Birthday wishes... It was one of the greatest Birthdays in so many ways. Thank you family and Friends for the tender E-mails you all sent to ben and I. The blessings you bring into our life is something that I cannot describe, thank you my friends and family for the E-mails and for the word of advice and Spiritual strength you all bring to me... Dad to respond to some things you mentioned I'm very impressed with your study of our Missions. Actually the football team that I cheer for is Santos, and when I say that Soccer is big that's an understatement here in Brasil. Its actually one of the only sports really played here in Brasil. The main player right now for the Santos team is Naymar and its hilarious how many people worship him haha. Also I'm sorry but my shoes are destroyed haha I will try and sent a picture and buy some new shoes but I haven't been able to find any good shoes they sale around here which has made things a little frustrating but its ok! :) I've become very good with inventing new tricks to improvise for my destroyed shoes. (For example I just use the other Elders shoes haha thank you Elder Larsen and Elder França) This always makes me laugh because before the Mission I was always upset when others used my things (Ben knows exactly what I'm talking about) but the Mission changes people I promise, and now I am the one using everyone elses things haha :) Also mom I hope you know I love you and I pray for you and our wonderful family everyday... Happy Birthday and know that I truly love you with all my heart. make it a good Birthday. Also Ben thank you for the wonderful present... I have one I'm sending here in a little, sorry its a little late. Once again thank you all for your love and E-mails. Your truly all incredible examples to me. Love you

Well as way of news my dear friend Elder Lords will be heading home tonight so I'm actually at the Mission office right now with President Tanner and several other Missionary's as we say our goodbyes. Hes such an incredible Missionary and to see this happening has taught me a very valuable lesson. After almost 1 year on the Mission I've begone to understand what it means to have true conversion into the Gospel. Its something not easy to acquire and from what Elder Bednar taught, its something that takes a life time to acquire. I'll never forget what my dear Brother Elder Doggett taught us that whenever he was passing through something hard he would look down and see the name of our Savior Jesus Christ close to his Heart... I notice that you can tell which Missionary's have the name of Christ held close to their heart... Elder Lords is a perfect example of a Missionary who appreciates his time and privileged to be a Missionary and you can see true conversion in him whenever he bears testimony of the Gospel. As the events have occurred this past several weeks I've really tried to understand what true conversions means and how we can obtain this within ourselves. As I was praying to know more and understand more of this simple but complex doctrine I had an experience that was very interesting.... last week after church one of our strong members for 15 years came out of the primary room and said that she will never come back to church for as long as shes alive or the Bishops wife is alive. She stormed out and from that point last week no one has had the chance to talk to her because she doesn't want visitors .. How could this have happened? How could a member of 15 years just walk out and forsake all that she knows to be true? Well I've enjoyed the chance to eat lunch with her on several occasions before this happened and I have heard her testimony several times... but when it comes down to really being converted she didnt have it. How is that possible you may ask? Well I've come to the conclusion that you may have a Testimony that the Gospel is true but when it comes down to living its principles and being converted to it, thats a whole other story. In the study guide in the back of the Book of Mormon we learn that "Conversion" is also the same thing as "Born again", Lets all open are Scriptures now and take a look at Alma 7:14... what do we learn we need to do? What does "be born" or "Converted" have to do with our Salvation? As I pondered on these question the Spirit really hit me hard. I learned that we may have a testimony of the Gospel but if we dont have a repented Heart thats willing to come unto the Lord, then we cannot inherit the kingdom of God. Theres that word Heart again... It seems that everything boils down to the Heart and desire within the Gospel. Lets move back to when Ben wrote about seeing the name of our dear Savior close to his heart... When he noticed the Name of the Savior he wasnt only realizing the Savior was close to his heart but he was also taking the name of the Savior and putting it into his heart as well. I guess you could say that my dear Brother took the first step in true conversion by realizing the Lord is everything in his life. He took the first step in actually writting the name of the Savior within his own heart. That name must always stay with us no matter what... we must also do the same. Like always I hope this makes sense. All in all I hope everyone realizes that we must have more than a testimony during these challenging times if we expect to persever until the end... I know sometimes its hard to let the natural man go and really be converted but personally I believe the first step to change is taking that step into the darkness of the unkown. Maybe that darkness is a Mission... or maybe its marriage or a calling in church. Whatever it is dont be scarred but have faith. Remember the Lord is always with us no matter what. My challenge for everyone is to remember the Savior... Remember that he is close to our heart no matter what. Remember whatever Rightoues desire you have the Lord will help you. :) 
I love you all so much and I hope you know I really enjoyed your e-mails today... I'm sorry it took me awhile to send the e-mail but its been a crazy few weeks... as a matter of fact I really havent had a good p-day for awhile haha. We are always running around like crazy, but thats also a good thing. :) The time sure is passing by fast. Lets remember to enjoy every moment we can with the ones we Love and the time we've been given. (Thanks for that great reminder Alex Love you bro.) :) Remember I love you all and I had a fantastic Birthday. I did start crying at one point as I missed my loved ones but to be honest it was one of the most incredible birthdays in the world! I mean come on, theres nothing better then having the chance to share your testimony of the blessings of the Gospel then on your birthday. It was pretty amazing! :) Love you all once more and I hoped you enjoyed this small and lacking in detail e-mail but remember I love you all no matter what. Take care until next week! :)
P.S. Olivia my address is Elder Matthew Ryan Doggett
                                         Rua Dr. Luiz Miranda da Rocha
                                         159-8 Andar
                                          PQ. JABAQUARA São Paulo
                                          CEP: 04344-010 SP
  Love you and take care! :)

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