(I am so very, very sorry, but my email to Presidente Souza deleted itself again! And I had to re-type it completely...therefore, this will be another very short email:( But, I will try to make the best of it!)
Hello all! I hope that the coming days are exciting and full of joy for you. Christmas is a wonderful time, especially for family and friends. It is a time to ponder the things that are most important in our lives. And, it is a time to be grateful and express thanks for the matchless gift of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. Of all the gifts that we will receive in the coming days, we need to remember that none of them are as wonderful and grand and joyful and loving as the gift of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. What a blessing, that we can repent of our sins, that we can be free from the pain and burden of our transgressions! We can be clean again, and return to the presence of God, with our families. This is one of the most glorious parts of the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ, that through His Gospel, His sacrifice, and our willingness to be obedient to His commandments, we can be sealed to our families forever, and live together with Heavenly Father for all eternity.
The Atonement surpasses our capacity to comprehend, yet as we apply it in our lives, we begin to feel of the joy and happiness that is to be found in repentance. And, through the Atonement, we can change. We can let go of the habits and tendencies and character traits and attributes that cause us discomfort, pain, and sorrow in our lives. We can take upon ourselves His name, His attributes, and His goodness.
What a glorious gift our loving Heavenly Father gave to us! And what great love doth the Savior have for us, that He would lay down His matchless and perfect life, take upon Himself our sins, our imperfection, our weaknesses, and our pains and afflictions, that we can be made whole, and that we can truly become as He is.
My dear family and friends, let us never forget who we are. Let us never forget that the hands of the Savior are always extended out to us, no matter what we have done, what we haven´t done, or how we feel in the moment. He is there, waiting for you. And if you accept His invitation, and be willing to obey His words and commandments, you can feel that joy, love, and peace that you so desperately want to feel.
Let us never forget, also, that the love that we have and share, one for another, is God-given, and that as we feel it and share it, it will grow, and our love for the Savior will grow, and we will begin to experience just a tiny, little, infinitissimally microscopic piece of the wonderful joy and love that our Heavenly Father has for us, and that we can have forever and ever one with another, even into the eternities.
I love you all so much. Please remember this Christmas the marvelous gift of Jesus Christ, and His Atonement, in our lives. And also remember that this gift is simply too good not to share with others:) As we do, our own love and gratitude and joy of this matchless gift will grow even more.
I love you all so very much. Please remember that too!
Hugs, and kisses, and bucket fulls of love,
Elder Reid Powell Empey
P.S. Neither the letter nor the package have arrived as of yet:( Maybe tomorrow, but maybe not. So, even if it doesn´t come know that I still love you all so very, very much! And that I will most likely get it some time in the future:)
P.P.S. Geneil, the things from you guys hasn´t come yet either:( But, that´s okay! I love you all tons!
P.P.P.S. I´m not sure yet what will happen as far as calling is concerned. You will be getting a call sometime during the week, most likely on Friday. So, please keep your cellphones on and with you. If I can´t get a hold of one of you, I will keep trying for all of you until I get somebody. So, please be ready!! Love you tons and scoops!