Barbara's baptism on Sunday was beautiful. I will be confirming her on this coming Sunday. She's been a pleasure to teach.
This Saturday is the first day of the Washington DC Temple's Festival of Lights. 450,000 lights are put up, with musical performances for free every night from Dec. 6th to Jan 1st. But perhaps even more exciting is that this Thursday our district has been rewarded for hard work by being given Parking Lot/Usher duty for one of the VIP nights to kick off the festival. Lots of high ranking ambassadors and religious leaders from the area all come to the Temple Visitors center, and some General Authorities come to address them. Last year President Packer and Elder Ballard were there. We don't know who will be here this year and they might be from the 70 instead of apostles, but still we're excited to get to be close to them. Last year the missionaries doing duty that night got to shake their hands!
I had some fun delving in to Christ's Parable of the Talents this week. In short the fun thing I learned was this:
Everyone comes in to this life with a different amount of Talents and Gifts, which are given to them from God. When all is said and done we will be judged by how much we have done proportionate to how much we are given. The man who received 5 talents was expected to gain 5 more. The man with 1 talent, had he gained one more, would have been commended just as warmly by the master as the other 2. However, having gained nothing he lost that which he had been given.
It was a reminder to me that all we really have to worry about is how much we are doing with what we have. Christ will make up the difference.
I promise you all that I know that Jesus is the Christ, and that he will make up the difference. His sacrifice does not simply make up for our sins, it makes up for all of life's unfairness. Every bad thing we were given, every good thing we weren't. Every trial we go through and every pain we feel. All of it is covered in that great and eternal sacrifice He has offered us.
I am eternally grateful for that, and urge anyone who will hear me to find within themselves that hope, for without hope we must be living in despair.
I love you all.
Stuff my mailbox,
-Elder Ted E. Bear