I love you. I'm so thankful for you. I'm so thankful for Dad. I'm so thankful for Jessica, Bobby, Kim (thanks for sending me a cookie), Brian, Aaron, and everyone in our family. My brothers and sisters mean so much to me it's hard to describe it without tears.... and i'm wearing a nice tie so I wont try, haha. As you know mom, I'm cutting myself back on how much time I spend in emails to be more obedient. Just always know that I'm safe and I love you. I'm going to be able to respond to your letter next week, but I saw that you sent me one and thank you so much for that. Also thank you for the pictures of kim and me with jessica, they mean a lot to me. My sisters are the BEST!!!
Well I have a few things to tell you about this week,
- This week I did two baptism interviews. One of them was for a 12 year old named Luis Angel. I was going to teach him but later the areas got changed so I wasn't able to. The interview went great, it's incredible how smart he is. During the baptism interviews that I do, at the end before the very last question I always pause for a moment to ask Heavenly Father if His child is ready. In this moment I was filled with the Spirit. Also, at the end of the interview I always ask the person for their testimony or how they feel about being baptized and Jesus Christ and things like that. With Luis Angel I felt the Spirit so strong when he shared how he wanted to follow Jesus Christ and do everything he can to be like Him. It was really one of the strongest feelings of the Spirit I have had on the mission. I love being a missionary and I love when Heavenly Father communicates with me.
- Lately my eyes are being opened, I'm seeing the bigger picture in things. I'm growing and learning to be better. I'm coming closer to Heavenly Father and I wouldn't trade this experience for anything.
- Thank you for the PACKAGE!! I kind of was super crazy excited when I saw all the beef jerky inside. Thank you also for the cards. Aaron is incredible. His quote blew my mind. It's just more evidence that he is better than I am in so many ways. But it's ok because I want him to be the best! I'm excited for the day when I can say my brother is a prophet.
- I have been thinking about my siblings a lot lately. Jessica has shown that she is incredibly strong. Bobby is incredibly willing to help. Kimberly is incredibly loving. Brian is incredibly dedicated. Aaron is incredibly talented in so many ways. I'm so thankful for all of my incredible brothers and sisters. It makes me so happy to be able to say that I'm their brother. I'm so thankful for that privilege. At times I feel a little left out but I feel like I'm incredibly good at being average :) that's good enough for me. I just want to show Heavenly Father that I love Him and I'm thankful for what I have been given, incredible parents and brothers and sisters.
I love you so much mom, Thank you. For everything. Everything.
Elder Branden Carl Astle