Sunday, February 27, 2011

Gratitude

This will be the last post that I, Paul Bezas, will write myself on this little blog. After this my mom will update the blog with updates from my emails home each week. Oh, boy. I will report to the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah this upcoming Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011. I will be serving a two year, full-time mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I'm not gonna lie... This is just so chill!

As I sit here tonight, musing on my thoughts, my heart is very full. I am so very grateful. :) I have been blessed with so much in my short nineteen years of life. What better way can I share my gratitude than to put all personal endeavors aside and serve those around me. For that is what the Lord would have us do. I can't wait to get goin'! As Elder Calhoun from The Best Two Years would say, "I'm re'd'-to-go!" Oh, I love that movie. It's gold, dude.

Am I nervous? Ohhhhhh, yeah. Do I speak Slovak fluently? Or at all? Ha. No. But that doesn't matter! Why? Because. This is the Lord's work. As our current prophet, President Thomas S. Monson, has said on numerous occasions- "Whom the Lord calls, the Lord qualifies." I have no need to fear. The Lord is with all those who go about His work. I love this talk from President Uchtdorf- Click on me! Are there other things that I could be doing instead of going on a mission? Sure. But as I've thought about it, I've asked myself- If I were to stay home... would I really be doing anything more worthwhile than I would on my mission? Nah. Not anything that can't wait for two years. This is my duty. This is our duty as those who have been given the priesthood to go forth and bring the great news of the gospel to our brothers and sisters around the globe. The gospel of Christ. He is our Savior. He will save us, as we strive to live righteously. We've been given so much; all He asks is that we keep His commandments. And serve those around us. "Shall we not go on in so great a cause?" The Lord is with us.

As I am preparing to leave my home and family for two years, along with great friends that have been there for me, I am filled with bittersweet feelings. I know that making this sacrifice will bring blessings to them. There is a part of me that doesn't want to leave them. But I know that I'll see them again. Life goes on. :) After speaking in church, I had the opportunity to eat lunch at home with some close family that was able to brave the icy drive from Utah to come hear me speak and wish me well as I am soon departing. As I spent time with them, I was filled with such gratitude for the family that I have. They are so good to me. I couldn't have it any better! Just one of my many blessings. I will miss them dearly while I am gone. But again, I know I will not be alone.

Later on, I had the awesome chance to see one of my good friends give his farewell talk as well in his home ward. That was awesome. He'll do great and will be a dynamic missionary! I know it. :) In recent days, I have decided that one of my favorite hymns is "God Be With You 'Til We Meet Again." This was reinforced again as we sang the closing hymn at his farewell, as we sang that comforting hymn. I will admit that when I am touched, I will choke up and emotion does overcome me. In this instance, I was able to hold back the tears, but I realized that that time of parting is rapidly approaching. I love the words-

"God be with you till we meet again,
By His counsels guide, uphold you,
With His sheep securely fold you,
God be with you till we meet again.

Chorus.
"Till we meet, till we meet,
Till we meet at Jesus’ feet;
Till we meet, till we meet,
God be with you till we meet again.

"God be with you till we meet again,
When life’s perils thick confound you,
Put His arms unfailing round you,
God be with you till we meet again.

"God be with you till we meet again,
Keep love’s banner floating o’er you,
Smite death’s threat’ning wave before you,
God be with you till we meet again."

I am so very grateful for my family. They have changed my life. Definitely for the better. :) I am also grateful for the many friends that I have made in different areas and times of my life. You have had an enormous impact on my life. I thank you for that. It was so great to come to church today and to see so many of my friends come to support me. That was a very pleasant surprise. I love you guys. And I love the leaders I have had in the church, both in Florida and here. You have made such a great difference in my life. Thank you. You might never know to what extent you make an impact, but just know that from my perspective- what you do makes a huge difference!

I love the gospel. I would be such a different person without it. I am so blessed because of it. I have purpose to my life thanks to the gospel. I know to whom I can look to for hope. Jesus Christ is my foundation. He is my friend.

I love you all and I'll see you in two years!

Dovidenia!

s láskou,
(soon to be) Elder Bezas

P.S. I get set apart tomorrow night as an elder and a representative of Jesus Christ at 9:30 by the stake president. How sweet is that. I'm stoked!