Monday, July 20, 2015

Last Handwritten Letter Home

 Elder 9's final handwritten letter & Testimony. Verbatim. 
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Hello Again!

It's me, supryze? suprise? surprise! However you spell that....

Sorry, I started off small there. (handwriting was small, he now makes it larger).  There, haha.

Well, as this is likely my last snail-mail letter, I will write, as Nephi, of the things of God. Yea, it mattereth not to me that I am particular to give a full account of all the mission drama or the things of the world, for behold, they suck. Wherefore, I desire the room that I may write of the things of God!

(Pause for laughter!)

I cannot explain fully, especially in writing, the blessings, experiences, and both spiritual and physical growing up I have been a part of and experienced personally in the last two years.... So, as human nature dictates, I will try to!

Firstly, if that's a word, GOD.  He is literally number one. As I have put Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ first in my life, these are the moments I am happiest, calmest (again, if that's a word), and when I have the most love in my heart.  All things are for the welfare of my soul. I am so happy that I have such a loving Father in Heaven who has such a great Plan for me. One which I may choose to follow.

Two-ly, FAMILY.  Families are VITALLY important. I see now, more than ever, the amazing influence my family has had on me. Without you, my family, I would not be who or where I am now.

I can see now, as well, the importance of marrying well, in an eternal aspect. We have the blessings of having Temples in our day, and it is of great import that we be sealed in these temples, and also do this great work, vicariously, for those who have passed, without that blessing.  It is the thing that holds us together.

As spouses work together as a team, in living, and in raising a family, they receive blessings from on High. They must love & respect one another, and care for one another. They must BOTH put God first in their lives... so on.  I see these examples in my family. I know how to do all this because I have seen it everyday in my family, and in my home. I am eternally grateful for this.

Thirdly! CPR! My spiritual resusetation (sp?), CHURCH. PRAY. READ.  Without these things, I could easily fall away from all truth.

Attending church meetings and observing the Sabbath is the way to re-new my covenants with God, reset my spiritual battery, and  grow in my understanding of the gospel.

Prayer is my personal and direct link of communication with Father in Heaven. It is a way to align my will with His. To lean upon His, and not my, understanding. Praying is an essential part of repentance, a faith-based action, and a mode of confiding in my Father. Without prayer, things would be dismal.

Reading the scriptures is a way Father can communicate back to me, a way for me to learn of His will. The scriptures teach to the understanding of all men, and make plain the things of God.  It is a primary way to increase my understanding, knowledge and testimony, of and in, my Savior, Jesus Christ, and His Atonement for all mankind.

These things are the beginning of what I have learned and become.  It's been a bumpy road, with many mistakes, crashes, and burns... But God has guided me through it all. With the help and blessings of companions and my mission president, and most of all, the Spirit, I have come out victorious, and thankfully in one piece!

I cannot explain, in enough words what an amazing journey and a joy my mission has been! I love the Lord, my family, my companions and everyone so much more now than I ever could have. My God has brought about such a mighty change in my heart that I am a stranger to who I was before... and yet I am a truer me than ever before!

Thank you, for loving me no matter what, helping me become the man I am today, and seeing the major role the Savior plays in my life. I love you dearly... see you soon!


Elder Jonathan Wagner Nine
13 July 2015 

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Missionary work is difficult. It has always been so. This is why, and this is why I am thankful for my son having served his mission with all his heart, might, mind, and soul. He has come to know and love His Savior on a personal level. No greater joy could come to a parent than to know that their child walks in the path of Christ.

Thank you, Jonathan. I love you. Welcome home.

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