I'm running a little low on time today, so here's a little spiritual thought to help you through your week (:
"Faith is not by chance, but by choice"
Out here on the mission, I've realized that this statement is completely true. We have to choose to grow closer to God. Or we can choose to try to figure out this life on our own, and distance ourselves from Him. The adversary will give us every reason to stray, but we have to realize that God knows ALL the answers. The only way we'll ever REALLY be happy is if we align our will with His. We can't wait until we NEED to be close with Him, or procrastinate until we feel like we're nearing the end. We have to start NOW. Sometimes the little guilty pleasures are the hardest things to give up...but little do we realize that in the end, the little things WERE the big things. Taking the time to read scriptures or pray or spend time building relationships with loved ones...those little things make all the difference! We have to follow our Savior's example in all things. Have the faith to ask what you can change to better yourself, and follow through on the answer! "If we are willing to act, we will be blessed with the strength...to change. We fail only if we fail to take another faithful step forward. We will not, we cannot, fail if we are faithfully yolked to the Savior - He who has never failed will NEVER fail us!" So just know that every step we take towards Heavenly Father and towards our Savior is worth something. Obstacles and mess-ups are bound to happen, and are just opportunities to better ourselves. Don't be discouraged by them, because fear is the absence of faith! Remember to ask yourself, what can YOU do to show God you love Him a little more today? And I assure you, as soon as you strive to serve Him more, He will pay you back 100000 times over. I love you guys, and I know that you're worth SO much in Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ's eyes. The Spirit will testify to you of that. Ask in prayer how much they care about you, and I promise, you can know for yourself just how loved you are.
Stay close to Their love and Pray always!
Lovin' you from the Phils,