Thursday, December 24, 2015

The Lord Looketh on the Heart.

Dear Family and Friends,

Happy 4th of July a little late! I hope it was a good one. The island was pretty crazy! 

This week I've been thinking about the scripture in 1 Samuel 16:7 which says: 

But the Lord said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because have refused him: for the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearancebut the Lord looketh on the heart.

I think this is pretty significant. And I'm not very good at it, which is probably why I've been thinking about it, because I need to work on it haha. 

I am grateful for all the experiences the Lord has given to me, to show me that peoples hearts, are often quite different from their countenance. 

I continue to be amazed by Joel. And how he has transformed from being grumpy and someone I did not necessarily want to talk to, to a happy, positive, and incredibly kind man. 

The day we turned around to talk to him, was not because of his "countenance or stature." But because of his heart. 

It is incredible to me, that a man (Arles) who lived a life of partying, and didn't seem to have much purpose in his life, has now shared the gospel with his family in El Salvador and received his temple recommend, so that this week he can "free his ancestors."

​I think one of the most exciting things for me on the mission is watching how Heavenly Father has looked on my heart and changed me.

I am still me. I am still silly, and I make a lot of mistakes. But I love Heavenly Father, and have an intense desire to do His will and help His children now and for the rest of my life. 

All of this is only possible because God sees our hearts. He knows and loves us. His son, Jesus Christ, makes these changes possible through His infinite and perfect Atonement. I am grateful for the chances I get every day to try to see people by their hearts. 

This week I hope that we can remember that Heavenly Father loves all of us. And we can treat others and ourselves as such. 

-Hermana Ries

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