Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Email from Aaron on December 13, 2011

Dear Family,

It's wonderful to hear from you and those pictures of Nolie's party look like they were a blast and a half.  Nolie looked like she really enjoyed herself and her birthday cake as well. I hope that you all get the letter I sent last week, I included the memory card and a letter to Ashley so hopefully it finds its way to you all soon. I thank you in advance for the package, and for whatever you have sent, I am truly grateful and thankful for it. We will see with transfers being 3 days before Christmas with what will happen there, I know that if I do stay in Alpine, families have welcomed us and signed up to have us over for Christmas eve and Christmas day, the Alpine ward is wonderful, I am humbled and blessed to be able to serve here. I think that those missionaries would love to come over to the house, even if it's not on Christmas day. And would it be OK with you if Shai were to come over on Christmas day during our phone call? I did find out that Skype will not be available for Christmas this year, as we are not allowed to use member's computers, but we will be calling using our phone so there will certainly be a phone call, what time will everyone be available? I could call anytime during that day; just let me know what time works best for you Utah time and California time.
 The ward Christmas party sounds like it was a great time as well, I am sorry that the food wasn't super delicious though. Our ward Christmas party here was a great experience as well. I'll talk about that in a minute. I have full faith in both of you with your new diets and I wish you well!
This past week I am sad to report that it finally happened, it was bound to and I was awaiting the inevitable, I got sick. I thought it was strep at first but it turned out just a sore throat and congestion and a bit of a fever, pretty good cold if you ask me, it hit me pretty hard and put me out of commission for a day, but I am on the road to recovery and only have a bit of a cough and continued congestion. I have stocked up on vitamin C and airborne and have decongestants at the ready so no need to fret. This is where the Christmas party comes in, I was supposed to do a musical number for the program, but I was in the thick of sickness and could barely talk, let alone sing, so Elder McGee helped me out a little bit and we performed together. We were given special ties by one of our investigators' mother on Thanksgiving and we put them to use in a duet. They are very musical ties and we let them show their talents for our musical number, it brought a smile to many a person's face so it was good to see that we were spreading some cheer. My voice is coming back and the ward made me promise to pay them back for not singing to them at the Christmas party so we will be going caroling the next little while to repay them ha-ha.
This past week we had the opportunity to teach Steve, and he is an amazing man, he has committed to work towards the 21 of January to be able to enter into the covenant with our Father in Heaven and has a wonderful spirit about him. He is very knowledgeable in the gospel and has asked "so what do I need to know to get baptized?" He has a bit of a struggle with Joseph Smith and having a modern prophet so we are working with him on that and encouraging him to pray and to read the Book of Mormon for we know that if He does these things and gains a testimony of the Book of Mormon that all other aspects of the gospel will follow.
We have also started to teach a part-member families children Jackson and Stanley, ages 10 and 8. They are extremely active young boys and love sports, their mother is a member and their father is not, he is a very nice man and we are encouraging him to participate in the lessons as well. They are a wonderful family and Jackson and Stanley have many questions about the gospel and want to know about Joseph Smith. Elder McGee are working on making our lessons hands on, as a sit down setting is not the best idea for a 10 and 8 year old, we will be meeting with them tomorrow and we are certainly looking forward to it.
Each day I thoroughly enjoy being nourished by the word of God, feasting upon the words of Christ. I continue to marvel at the example of Nephi and his steadfastness in his faith, he exemplifies many Christ like attributes, especially Charity in 2 Nephi 33:3 and one verse that I will share is verse 6 when Nephi states "I glory in plainness (for the gospel is simple and plain and easy to be understood if we but open our hearts and our ears and minds to understanding and hearken to the spirit); I glory in truth (for that is also the gospel and that is what he taught his people, the doctrine of Christ, the way back to the Father); I glory in my Jesus (I find that simple word 'my' to be extremely powerful in this statement, it proves that Nephi has personally accepted Christ as his Savior and Redeemer, he has felt the healing and strengthening power that comes through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, he has made it personal to him), for he hath redeemed my soul from hell" I love the scriptures with all my heart and I know them to be the word of God, for if we truly "feast upon [them], [they] will tell [us] all things what [we] should do." I know that this is the Lord's work and I am blessed to be able to be in His service. I am out of time and I love each and every one of you dearly and send my thanks and gratitude to you for your thoughts, kind, words and prayers. May we keep the spirit of Christ in this Christmas season is my prayer.

Love, your son,
Elder Aaron Jordan Lloyd

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