England London South Mission: July 9, 2015- July 2017
Family/ Friends please send letters to letter address and packages to package address. I will update letter address if a transfer were to take place. Package address will remain the same. Thanks!

Letters Address:
RH11 9GA

Packages Address:
Elder Zachary Rivera
England London South Mission
The London Temple
West Park Road
Newchapel, Surrey RH7 6NB
United Kingdom

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Challenges Bring Out the Best in Us...

True happiness is found based upon the basic
principles of righteous living.
Hello everyone!

This has been ne of the best weeks but also one of the hardest weeks of my life. God taught me some valuable lessons this week that really helped me learn what it means to fail every once in a while and respond the way he would want me to. I've truly learned what it means to rely on the Lord in a more perfect way. He has a perfect plan but sometimes it just takes some trust and understanding for some of the things we want to come pass. All I know is God has a perfect plan for all of us but we need to be willing to follow the path He has already laid out for us to walk on, even if it means sometimes we bump into some pretty big barricades along the way and we must shoulder on through them until we make it to the other side. God is good!

Thursday: March 2nd, 2017
We had our trainings and interviews today with President and they went super well! It was so good to be back at their home for their day(as we did interviews there instead of in London) which was super nice! They are some of the best people that I know and I love them dearly. So much has been given to me by them and I have learned so much from my mission mom and dad! Truly a blessing and I'm grateful that God matched us together for these past 2 years to serve His children in England together. I had the chance to train all of our zone on planning today and it really helped me learn a lot about focusing on planning with priority and with a firm mind on what you want to accomplish which is something I am excited to use when I get back home soon! 9 weeks... I can't even believe it... I have come to know so much over my mission. I can't share the smallest part in which I feel towards my mission and all that has happened to me both physically and spiritually in the land of England for these past 20 months. I know my God... and I more intimately know my Savior. He is everything to me. I am so blessed to have the testimony that I have and the joy that it brings me to hold and share with others. I can't wait to share it with all of you in a more intimate way when I get home.

Friday: March 3rd, 2017
We had DLC today and we made plans for a lot of fun things that us as the zone leadership want to implement into the transfer with the last 3 and half weeks we have together before some of us move onto the next stage of our missions and some go home. Elder Green and I had some good chats today because we were both stressing over a bit of life. Seems this happens a lot but I was grateful to share some good insights and ideas with Elder Green as we both contemplated things for the near future.

Saturday: March 4th, 2017
The Shard (tallest building in London)
We had a pretty sweet miracle today with one of our friends Serge... We had a bit of a scuffle with his wife today cause she wasn't all about that missionary life but he has a strong testimony of what has happened to him as he has been meeting with us and he was just super sorry but then we taught him and got him on date for the 25th of March! We are super excited!

Sunday: March 5th, 2017
A day to remember... not only did we have an awesome Special Stake conference with Elder Ballard over digital feed from Salt Lake but then I learned a hard lesson from God today but felt so much of his love and the Spirit super strongly as I asked Elder Tunnicliffe to give me a blessing after being prompted to do so. It was a well needed experience in such a significant moment. For a moment, my future blurred but then almost instantly as I started to involve God in my plans again, it started to make sense and become clear to me. God gives us challenges to help us to become the person He really intends us to become. I've had so much success in my life and especially in my mission and for once I needed to just experience failure to be grateful for that success! God always has bigger and better thoughts and ideas than we do!

Monday: March 6th, 2017
Really good day of accounting again! The mission is continuing to move upward and onward and we are breaking the trend of "no one baptizes in England!" It is a total lie! These people are so prepared and so much is happening right now! The Second Harvest is truly upon us! Tonight we headed back to Crawley(my former area) and it was just nice to be back. Weird because it has only been 2 weeks since I was released and moved into London but it was so good!

Tuesday: March 7th, 2017
Today was super fun!!! Elder Wright and I got to work again together and it was just super fun! We were companions so there was a lot to just rejoice in and talk about and it was just a super good day together! We found a few people and then we made door hangars out of Haribo packages(gummy candy) and Mormon.org cards and rubber bands and it was so much fun! We made 22 of them and then dropped 20 of them off to homes and cleared the route we picked in 7 minutes as we sprinted around! We just laughed and had a blast haha! The cards said, "Our message is sweeter than these Haribo!" We had some tender moments as companions but what I love is when you finally separate you begin to really appreciate those moments together and miss them more than ever. Elder Cloward, Elder Wright, and I had a group hug at the end and we just reminisced for a second on our companionship and we all just wanted to cry like little boys again after talking for a bit on how amazing our time was together and how we took it granted. We said we'll save the tears for May haha. They are awesome elders and I love them a ton!

England has been good to me...

Wednesday: March 8th, 2017
Today is good! Had to apply for more schooling for UVU which should be fun and turns out... there is an open basketball tryout on September 16 which means hmm... who knows what God's next plan is for me! Maybe this is what needed to happen the whole time. We'll just have to wait and see what happens!

Verses of the Week:

Book of Mormon:
Alma 50:20
"Blessed art thou and thy children; and they shall be blessed, inasmuch as they shall keep my commandments they shall prosper in the land,"

Doctrine and Covenants:
D&C 76:61
"Wherefore, let no man glory in man, but rather let him glory in God, who shall subdue all enemies under his feet."

God gives his toughest challenges to his strongest warriors... and true joy is found in the smallest victories.

-Elder Rivera

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