Despise not thou the chastening of the Lord

Dear fam and friends,

This week was TRYING but GREAT. That´s the great thing about missions. They are trying and amazing all at the same time. I’ve never grown more in my life than I have here in these months and I know there is a LOT more learning and growing and ¨becoming¨ to come.

We had a great zone meeting Wednesday morning and talked about finding, faith, recognizing the spirit, and a few more topics. It was inspiring and I think we all felt a resolve to be better. Thursday, Friday and Saturday we spent 10-12 contacting as a zone in one area, starting with San Juan, then San Mateo, then La Esperanza. It was a great experience, just 2 straight hours of contacting each morning, and reminded me that sharing the gospel is SO MUCH FUN and it is EASIER than we think it is sometimes. (The harder thing is helping people to accept our (and Christ’s) invitation.)

I don’t have too much time so I’ll just share a quick experience we had. We were searching for a reference with the daughter of our ward mission leader, Alma, and had FINALLY found her after an hour or so when she told us that she didn’t have time until the next day (today). We started walking back down the road to go back to the city when all of a sudden, a less active who the missionaries in our ward have been looking for forever ran up to us. He told us he had a lot of questions and explained how he wanted to be sealed in the temple with his new wife and wants us to teach her. He doesn’t have a great reputation with some of the members of the branch for something that happened a few years ago, but as sons and daughters of God, it is our responsibility to believe that EVERYONE can use the gift of the atonement and be changed. We planned a time to come back to his house and teach him and his wife together, and I started thinking about how what really matters in this life is what our Heavenly Father thinks of us, how pleased He is with our actions and our efforts, even the smallest ones, to become better than who we are now. Never lose faith in your potential!

I was reading this week in Hebrews 12, and I love what it teaches about trials from the Lord.

1 Wherefore seeing we also are compassed about with so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which doth so easily beset us, and let us run with patience the race that is set before us,

2 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

We need to lay aside every weight – whatever that may be in our personal lives – and every sin, so that we may be able to run with patience the race that is set before us. This does not imply that the journey will be short and painless. A race is hard, and requires endurance, but we can run it with patience if we lay aside all that weighs us down. I love that it teaches that Jesus is the author and perfect example of faith. He knew His father, He knew His potential, He knew His purpose, and He knew of the blessings that were set before Him and all of us if He could just endure on the cross.

5 And ye have forgotten the exhortation which speaketh unto you as unto children, My son, despise not thou the chastening of the Lord, nor faint when thou art rebuked of him:

6 For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth.

7 If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?

8 But if ye be without chastisement, whereof all are partakers, then are ye bastards, and not sons.

The Lord tries us and chastens us because He loves us and wants us to be able to have experiences that will help us to learn and grow. What doesn’t try us can never change us. And all of those he tries and chastens, He takes in as sons and daughters. In our trials we have to remember that the Lord only punishes who He LOVES, and that we can only achieve our divine potential through challenges and trials we receive from our Father in Heaven. I am so grateful for Him!

I hope you all are well and happy!

All my love,

Hermana Marcheschi

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