Lot’s of exciting things have been happening in the last few weeks. First, Alec got to say hi to Elder Harrison Reed, who had been serving in the Tacoma Washington Mission before the creation of the Federal Way Washington Mission. They are now in the same mission together. His new mission address is:Elder Alec Johnson Washington Federal Way Mission 23175 224th Place SE, Suite E Maple Valley, Washington 98038
Alec has already been having some great experiences!! He never expected to learn to drive a tractor when he was called to serve in Seattle Washington but he has learned just that while doing some service recently. He also got to help some church members who were putting some finishing touches on a hobbit home. The following are from items Alec included in his email home.
President Larkin was an amazing mission president and was able to give me some great advice before he left! He really emphasized the importance of strict obedience and complete consecration of myself as both a missionary and an individual to our Heavenly Father! I agree with the the testimony of President Larkin that we will be able to develop the Patience and Charity we need as servants of our Heavenly Father if we devote everything we have to our service. President Larkin will certainly be missed by everyone who was once a part of the Seattle mission, but we have certainly received a great mission president in Federal Way with the addition of President Eaton!
Things are continuing to go well here in Buckley! I got your package full of goodies last week and I ate the whole thing in one day!
Last week was really cool, on Thursday we got to meet our new mission president, President Eaton. I can tell he’s going to be really great for the mission. He met all of the missionaries individually and then his wife gave a talk on sacrifice and he gave a discussion on charity. You can tell that he was a professor at BYU-Idaho because he makes a lot of dating jokes. You can tell that the Eatons both have an amazing understanding of the gospel. I’ll be able to learn a lot from them! We had a combined Mapley Valley and Pulliop South (spelled wrong) zone conference at the Buckley building and I got to see Elder Reed too! He said that Logan should be getting his mission call soon (Fort Worth Texas Mission) so that’s pretty exciting.
I’ve been finding out that missionary work can be very difficult at times, and I suspect that I will never stop learning ways that I can become a better missionary. It’s an amazing privilege from our Heavenly Father to let us develop Christlike Attributes through service to the Lord. I am very grateful for the opportunity I’ve had to develop a greater understanding of the Atonement and a stronger testimony of the reality that Christ lives and that He loves and knows each and everyone of us personally. As a missionary, I’ve found that a lot of people are “not interested” in hearing a message about Jesus Christ. But, as we learn in 2 Nephi 26, Christ is personally interested in them, and He holds out His hand to offer help through the Atonement “all the day long.”
As a missionary and as a disciple of Christ, its is our privilege to continually invite others to come unto Christ. Even though we may think someone may not want to learn about the Gospel, it is important to remember that the Atonement and the very Doctrine of our Savior, Jesus Christ is meant for everyone of the Father’s children. It has been amazing to see the atonement work in the lives of those in Buckley that we are teaching. I have learned that many of our Heavenly Father’s children feel a void in their life and are looking for ways to fill that void without knowing exactly where to turn. I know that this void can be filled by developing a personal relationship with Jesus Christ. I am honored to be able to share the gospel with others so that they can fill this void through faith in Christ and Christ’s Atonement.
My advice to myself and everyone reading this is to forget yourself and go forth to hasten the work!
I am trying to develop perfect faith, humility, charity and diligence. I know that I will not be able to succeed in developing these Christlike Attributes by myself, but can by relying wholly on the Atonement and its enabling power, I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me. (Philippians 4:13) And I know that as I develop faith to rely wholly on the promptings of the Spirit as I teach, the humility to turn myself over to the Lord and submit my desires to His will, the charity to turn completely look outward and focus on the needs of those investigators that I have been blessed to teach; that I will be able to see many souls enter in to the waters of baptism and be blessed as they grow closer to Christ.