Tuesday, November 8, 2016

10/24/2016 This is dedicated to YOU

Brilliant people,

This email today is dedicated to you. "Who me?", you might ask... yes you, the reader of this email. Chances are pretty high, if you're reading this right now, that we have a good relationship. Chances are high that you've been one who has helped me out. Maybe it was a simple thing, you bought my lunch, you spent time getting to know me, you gave me a compliment, you asked for my advice. Maybe you trusted me, and I trusted you. Maybe you've known me for years! Maybe you've supported me that whole time, thought about me, prayed for me, cheered for me, defended me, lead me, strengthened me. Or maybe I only got to know you for a few weeks, maybe a few months. Maybe I met you on my mission and spent time in your home, where you provided for me, sheltered me, cared for me, fed me, listened to me, ministered to me. Maybe you went out of your way to spend time teaching with me, or just giving me a ride, or giving me dinner over and over and over, even asking me for my favorite foods. Maybe you've been a friend to me. Or an ally, or a foundation, or an example, or a companion, a mentor, or a father, a mother, a brother, a sister, a family member, a bishop, a leader, a fellow saint. Maybe you've loved me enough to straighten me out! To shake my shoulders and slap my cheeks and yell, "Wake up! Where are you headed?!". Or maybe enough to let me go my own way. I am the result of all of that. I am who I am, because you are who you are, and you've done for me what you've done. I want to tell you that I recognize that, and that I appreciate it. A lot.

People ask me all the time how I know God is really there. Quite simply, because I have seen his hand many, many times. I've seen it in the way you've treated me, and loved me. Some of the greatest miracles God has worked in my life has been through you. I mean that literally, it's not just a mushy saying! There are hundreds, perhaps thousands, of people who have been the hands of the Lord, for me. They have been his hands as they have loved, or have been good, even as he loves, or has been good. And it has lifted me up! Again and again. So thank you.

I want to be those hands. Hands for doing good, for creating, for upholding. I want to bless, as I have been blessed.

The attitude of gratitude is perhaps one of the healthiest of human emotions.

That's all I wanted to say! Things are well in Monett, the future is absolutely bright, no matter what happened in the eternity of misused yesterdays.

Elder Hakes

Here's some random pictures of my life, as usual!

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