Monday, May 13, 2013

First Call Home

First of all I really like the things our mission pres sends us so I am going to send it to you:

Message from the President:
HOW BIG IS YOUR HEART? The heart (♥) has long been used as a symbol to refer to the spiritual, emotional, moral, and in the past also intellectual core of a human being. As the heart was once widely believed to be the seat of the human mind, the word heart continues to be used poetically to refer to the soul.   Lehi explains the only way to salvation is through the atonement of Jesus Christ.  The price we must pay to affect the atonement in our lives is by having a broken heart and a contrite spirit.  (2 Nephi 2:7)    Solomon asked for an understanding heart (1 Kg 3:12) and Ezekiel was told in temple language,   “A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh…” (Ezek. 36:26).  Earlier the Lord had directed Israel to “cast away your transgressions: and make you a new heart…” (Ezek. 18:31). Once there was a horse named Big Red.   This horse was a stallion of good breeding, but nothing out of the ordinary.  He was groomed for racing.  It is reported that the owner acquired this horse with a “coin toss”.  On July 4, 1972 he finished fourth in a race at Aqueduct Racetrack.  He had been forced to the back of the pack and could never make up the ground to win.  From this Big Red learned how to be in the back of the pack and still pass the other horses to win.  He won some races and then finished third in the Wood Memorial as a three year old.  At the Kentucky Derby, the first race of the Triple Crown,  he again broke last but eventually overtook the favorite Sham and finished first by 2 ½ lengths.  Big Red had set a course record by running each successive lap faster than the previous one, coming again from last to first.  In the second leg of the Triple Crown he again broke last; he again won by 2 ½ lengths over the favorite Sham.  The last of the three races was the Belmont Stakes.  The jockey was warned about running the horse too fast as the race was a long one and this particular jockey had raced another horse so hard that the horse literally died that day of a broken heart.  This time Big Red broke first with, you guessed it, Sham.  The two horses set a fast early pace, opening lengths on the rest of the field.   Then, Sham began to tire, ultimately finishing last.  Big Red astonished spectators by continuing the fast pace and opening up a larger and larger margin on the field.  In the stretch he opened a 1/16 mile lead.  At the finish he won by 31 lengths, breaking the margin-of-victory which was previously 25 lengths.  Big Red had run the fastest 1 ½ miles on dirt in history.  The record still stands after 38 years.  Oh, Big Red’s track name was SECRETARIAT. After Secretariat’s death necropsy was performed to see what made this horse so special.  Those that were present said; “We just stood there in stunned silence.  We couldn’t believe it.  The heart was perfect.  There was no problems with it.  It was just this huge engine.”  It is estimated that Secretariat’s heart weighed 22 pounds or 2 ½ times the size of a normal horse heart.  What made this horse so special was the size of his heart. The question now must be asked, “How big is your heart?”   Are you hanging back hoping to win by a nose or do you have a new heart and trust in the Lord to break out in the lead and continue to run each lap faster and faster as you serve as a mighty warrior in fulfilling your purpose to invite all you come in contact with to “come unto Christ”?  If you have a stony heart, can you now exchange it for a “new heart”?  Our Savior, Jesus Christ proclaimed, “All things are possible to him that believeth”.  (Mark 9:23).    
I really like this.

I loved talking to my family. I thought it would be strange to talk to my family, but it was just like I saw you yesterday. I don't have very much time today, but I also know that I have a purpose here and I know that I need to do the work here. I know that the Lord will help me though my mission if I rely on him. I love this talk about the heart. I know that I can replace my heart with a 22 pound heart. (That means that I will be 190 when I get back because I will have a bigger heart). I don't know what to write about, so I will share my testimony.

I know that the prophet Joseph Smith was a prophet and that he saw the Son and the Father in the Sacred Grove. I know that Jesus Christ lived and that he suffered for all of my sins. I know that He always know what I am going though and can help me any time of the day. I have seen the priesthood work. On my mission I get the opportunity to use it a lot. I have personally healed people though the priesthood power. I have also baptised and confirmed people and have been an advocate for the Lord on my mission. I know that my family loves me and that they care for me very much. I know that the prophet Pres Monson is a true prophet today. I have felt the Holy Ghost every time he speaks and I know that the apostles are also called by God to teach the gospel. Elder Holland told us that he is on a mission too, just like us. We are promised a lot of the same blessing he is [promised] as an apostle. He called us apostles of Jesus Christ. We are truly apostles and I know that the Book of Mormon is a book of God's words. I know that. I read it every day and every day it helps me get closer to my Heavenly Father. No other book can help me as much as the  Book of Mormon.

I loved talking to you family. I love you all and will pray for you. I encourage you to open the scriptures every day to grow closer to Jesus Christ.
I also love Grandpa's comments. You are one of the most knowledgeable people I know (about the Gospel). I would love to have hours of conversations with you about the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Elder Joshua Walker