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Missionary: why I love serving in Forest Grove

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Spencer Heywood of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints invites residents to spiritual conversation

We know that in this day and age, there is a lot to be concerned about. People tell us everyday about how they miss "the good ol' days," and how things just aren't like they used to be. Serving a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is a unique opportunity where all day, every day for two years, I get to study, teach and testify of Jesus Christ to everyone around me.

While on this mission, I take a break from watching TV and listening to distracting music, and essentially every other worldly thing that people my age (20) seem to revel in. I don't have my own cell phone, I have to follow a strict schedule and I have almost zero "me" time. And I love it.

I've gained a testimony about how living a Christ-centered life truly is the most sure source of happiness. He is the most reliable source of peace. He says to us in Psalms 46:10, "Be still, and know that I am God." There's a lot out there that can scare or intimidate you. There may be things that make you angry, that you feel are not right. If you're feeling this way, the Savior says to us, as He did to the sea, "Be still" (Mark 4:39).

That's the message that I've been called here to Oregon to teach. To those who don't believe in God, I testify that there is one, and that He loves you. To those who are on the fence about the whole thing I say the same. To those who do believe in God but may have their head "stuck in the muck" here on planet earth, this is a reminder that we know what the final outcome is:

"These things I have spoken unto you that in me ye might have peace. In the world you shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." (John 16:33)

So, if you see those guys with the white shirts and ties, or the gals with the dresses (both wearing black name tags), and you're feeling down, anxious, tired, upset, or angry, flag 'em down! And even if you're not, call them over! They'll gladly come talk to you and share a message that will warm your heart and bring peace to your soul. That's because it's a message centered on the Savior Jesus Christ and His gospel.

God bless you, wherever you are. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

Spencer Heywood lives in Cornelius.