Monday, July 25, 2016

My Mission in 4 Words.


Dear Familia Y Amigos, 

  The moment has arrived. I have seven days remaining in my beloved Perù. 
I was trying to think about what I would write, but I think I can sum up my 
entire mission in four words:
Gozo, Diligencia, Fe, y Amor. (Joy, Diligence, Faith, and Love). 

Joy.  Before I came here I thought I knew what joy meant.
I was completely wrong. I thought joy came from worldly things. 
I have come to fully realize that true joy comes from serving people you love. 
I have met some extremely poor families, but they were happy because they put the family and the gospel before anything else. 

     I thought poverty meant you didn’t have a microwave or a huge television. 
I have come to realize that poverty is so much more than that. 
There are people in this world that have dirt floors and a tin roof, but they are happy because they are obedient to the principles of the gospel. Words can not even describe the joy I have felt as I have shared the gospel of Jesus Christ with my beloved brothers and sisters here in Lima, Perù. 

Diligence.   I have come to learn that nothing worth having in this life is ever free. The only way we can make ends meet is by hard work, and giving one hundred percent of our efforts in everything we do. 

Faith.  I thought I had a testimony before the mission, but I have come to realize that my testimony was just about as big as a grain of sand compared to the testimony that I have obtained as a servant of the Lord for two years. The thing that has made my faith grow so much here in the mission is seeing the faith of others. 

     I heard a story of a missionary here that had a recent convert who only had ONE HEN, and she sold it so that she could pay for transportation to make it to the temple.

     I know a little elderly lady from southern Perù  that used to be a temple worker. She lives in a small house up in the hills, and can’t walk very well due to her age. She had to take a moto, and two or three different buses just to make it to the temple and back. 

     I have seen true miracles. I have seen the power of fasting. I have seen the power of tithing. I know people who barely have enough to eat, but they pay their tithing because they know that is what the Lord has commanded. 

  During my time here I have truly come to know my Savior and redeemer Jesus Christ. I love our Savior. I know that without him and his great atoning sacrifice, we are nothing. Everything we have, everything we do, and everything we may become is all thanks to our Lord, Jesus Christ. There are millions of people in this world that 
don´t know or realize that, but I have been blessed with the sacred opportunity to make that known to at least a handful of people. 

Love.  I think the best word to describe my two years as a missionary here in the Perù Lima North Mission is Love. I have come to know the meaning of love and charity. 
I love the Peruvian people with all my heart.
But I don’t know which is greater..the love I have for THEM, or the love they have shown to ME.

Love is the thing that causes a Peruvian to take care of a sick American missionary that doesn’t even speak Spanish, but has been throwing up all day. 

Love is the thing that causes a Peruvian family to offer that same missionary a piece of bread with bitter olives (a dinner that doesn’t seem like much, but one must realize that this same family was basically dying of hunger because of their extreme poverty). 

  Word´s cannot describe the love I feel for my Brothers and Sisters here in Perù.  Because of the love I have for them, I have given them the best, most priceless gift I have to offer. A gift that was given to me, the day I was born, a gift that was given to my great grandmother over eighty years ago when she knocked on a Mormon neighbor`s door to ask for a cup of sugar.....The restored gospel of our Lord, Jesus Christ. 

  The only thing I can say is that during my time here, I have seen miracles. I have seen countless people change their lives. I know that no challenge is too difficult to overcome when we have the power of Jesus Christ on our side. I know that this is just the beginning. In the years that come, I just know that I will see my converts leave on missions, be sealed in the temple with their families for all time and eternity, teach the gospel to their children, and prepare to be eternal families.

  I am eternally grateful that the Lord sent me here to Perú, and gave me this once in a lifetime opportunity to share the gospel with my beloved Peruvians.
I have made hundreds of new friends in my time here, and four thousand miles cannot separate us. I know I will return to see them all again. 
I have even made friends who have since passed away, but I know that I will see them again also. 

  I finish with the words of the Apostle Paul as he said goodbye to his recent converts….. “neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.”
(Acts 20:24)

  I feel as if I am leaving a piece of my heart in my beloved Perù. 
A piece of me that will never return, and that will forever remain among the dusty streets, the quiet hills, and the humble homes of the people I have had the privilege of teaching over the course of two years. 

  May the Lord forever bless the country of Perù, 
and may the Lord forever bless the Peruvian People.
I love Perù, and I love the people of Perú.
I love the gospel. I love our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ.

With much love, and Viva Perù, 
Elder Jacob Reschke

P.S.  I already sent my final email, but here is another one just to explain about my week.
We had the fantastic opportunity to go to the temple one last time.
It was such a spiritual day.  I am so glad that I had the opportunity to go one last time here.
The spirit there was so strong.  Other than that, we had a good week of teaching, and also we had a fun Peruvian Independence Day Ward Mission Activity.  
Because Peruvian Independence Day is coming up, everyone has their Peruvian flags out.

Love you all so much,
And I will see you in a week!






5 comments:

  1. That was an awesome final email! It has been so fun hearing all about life in Peru this last 2 years, so excited and ready to have you back home!

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  2. What a great email! So well written and heartfelt. You did a great job as a missionary, Jake! I can tell you love the Peruvian people so much. We're excited to see you soon!

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  3. Jake I will miss your letters. I enjoyed them
    every week. I love this final letter, it made me cry. You have been such a good example to me and so many others. I can feel your love and compassion for the people of Peru. Welcome home love Aunt Kathy

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