Ok, so talking to you guys yesterday was soooooo much fun! Like seriously it was for sure a highlight haha. It amazes me how everything is so much the same with us even though it has been nearly 5 months and I am currently in a different country. Everyone sounds so good. What a blessing it is to have a family (and I include extended and friends in that group) that is such a source of strength, support, encouragement and love.
That is another thing I have learned since I have been down here is the fact that not everyone has that same system of support that I do, and every day I become more cognitively aware of the fact that I am the person that I am today because of three things: the gospel of Jesus Christ, my family, and my friends. I sometimes wish that I could take credit for being who I am, but I truly can't. The examples I have had in my life; beginning primarily with the Savior and then my parents, have truly shaped me into the person I am today. Each and every day I truly strive to live and work in such a way that each one of you would be proud. You have all done so much for me that I feel that doing anything less than making you 100% proud would constitute at least partial failure. I love you all so much.
Another thing that I am continually learning here on my mission is the value of tribulations and trials in our life. I have come to love the beginning part of Romans 5 where Paul says that he glories in tribulations because he knows that tribulation worketh patience. This is a lesson that I continue to learn every single day because by no means is missionary work easy. If it were easy, I would feel a little shorted on the experience because you can truly learn so much more through trials and tribulations. We are all here in this life to learn, grow and progress. Many times the only way to obtain true progression and change for the better in this life is by learning through tribulations. Let us all try and remember this fact as we all will undoubtedly experience trials and tribulations in the coming days, weeks, months etc... Rely on God, be patient, and find ways that we can learn through tribulation.
One last thing, so yesterday for our third hour of church they did a presentation on EFY, which will be in the Tampico area for the first time ever. It made me think back to my EFY years with all my boys. I'm thinking that sometime in the coming summers that I'm gonna wanna be living in Midway and counseling at EFY if I can get some dudes on board with me haha. Nah, we will see. Also where is my boy Scotty Hutchings gonna be going on his mish? I love you all and know that all is well. I loved all the pics you sent momma thanks so much.
Elder Stockard in Fort Worth, Texas. April 3, 2012
Elder Stockard and his trainer, Elder Rindlisbacher in Tampico. April 8, 2012
Elder Stockard with a turtle at a member's house in Madero, Mexico. April 2012