July 5, 2016
Dear Alley Family & all friends of my family,
I wish to express my love and concern for my cousin, Sister Anika Alley, who is currently serving as a full-time missionary for God's true Church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, to the people of the Washington Kennewick Mission and to her family, my Aunt Julia and my cousins Adison, Anton, Juliana, Abram and Aaron. I love you all and I want you all to know that my fellow missionaries in my district, my mission president and I are all praying for you. We pray that you will feel and continue to feel Heavenly Father's love for you, as well as the love from all your friends and family. I love you all and if there is anything that I can do to serve you all, even though my power to do so is limited, please don't hesitate to e-mail me and let me know. In fact, don't ever hesitate to call on all of us, your fellow Alley clan members and friends, for help. We are here and are ready to serve you. to Uncle Marc, I love you and miss you. Until we meet again, say "hi" to Grandpa Alley for me.
Some of you may have already heard that President Salisbury, my mission president, gave my family permission to call me on the phone on Sunday evening. While I do wish that the circumstances that allowed the call to happen were a little more joyful, I really did enjoy our brief reunion. During the call, I told my family that this e-mail would be a little different than my previous ones. The title and the topic of this e-mail have actually been on the back of my mind for quite some time, but I wasn't sure when and how I would be able to write it. But in honor of Uncle Marc and his family, I pray that the Holy Ghost will guide my words so they will inspire more faith in our Savior Jesus Christ and bring hope to Sister Anika Alley and her family.
Ever since I was a kid, I loved superheroes. The idea of beings who had powers and abilities to perform feats that would be impossible for normal humans to do have always fascinated me. If my Mom hadn't told any of you about this little hobby of mine, I was so fascinated with superheroes that I tried to create my own superheroes in a notebook. Unfortunately, they're not DC or Marvel comic quality, but I really did enjoy making them. In fact, I had quite a few companions who actually rekindled my childhood hobby and love for superheroes and creating them. Of course, that's a story for another time.
Over the years, I developed a long list of superheroes that I really admired. One of my favorite questions to ask people is, "Who is your favorite superhero?" While my list of favorites have changed over the years, there is one superhero that has always remained somewhere on my list. His name is Superman.
There are those in the world of comic book geeks that don't like superman because he is considered "over-powered." However, I find that his powers are awesome! Not just because the powers themselves are cool, but because of how he used those powers. With the power to fly, superman could travel to Hawaii any time he wants a vacation. Instead, he uses it to fly people to safety. With his strength, he could knock out anyone who doesn't give him respect. Instead, he uses it stop heavy objects from crushing helpless victims.
In the movie "Superman Returns", superman was flying around with Lois Lane to find out why she typed up this article called "Why the World Doesn't Need Superman". Lois Lane, in anger, tells him that because he left her and the world for five years, they had to learn how to move on without him. She then yells to him, "We don't need a savior!" Superman then flies high in the sky with her and tells her that his super hearing allows him to hear everything. He then explains, "You say the world doesn't need a savior. But from up here, I hear people crying for one." Despite what anyone thought or said, Superman knew that there were those who needed him and knew that he had the power to do the impossible.
When I thought about this scene, this thought then came to my mind: This is exactly what Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ hear. In fact, aren't we all crying for a Savior? Don't we all, at one point or another, wished for someone who could the impossible?
Since the beginning of time, God's children, even if not all of them, have cried unto Him for help with one trial or another. The children of Israel cried unto Him to deliver them from the Egyptians and God sent Moses unto them. But Moses then taught them, "The Lord thy God will raise up unto thee a Prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken" (Deuteronomy 18:15). After Lehi and his family left Jerusalem, he also prophesied about "a prophet would the Lord God raise up among the Jews-even a Messiah, or, in other words, a Savior of the world" (1 Nephi 10:4) and taught that "all mankind were in a lost and in a fallen state, and ever would be save they should rely on this Redeemer" (1 Nephi 10:6). Well, this Prophet, Messiah and Savior did come. His name is Jesus Christ, the Son of God.
Since the beginning of time, I honestly believe that God and His Son Jesus Christ have heard someone crying for a Savior, someone who had the power to do the impossible. The power to give second chances, the power to heal broken hearts and the power to bring back lost loved ones. I believe that when the time came for Jesus Christ to come to mortality, He was overjoyed and determined to fulfill the prophecy that said, "...he offereth himself a sacrifice for sin, to answer the ends of the law, unto all those who have a broken heart and a contrite spirit; and unto none else can the ends of the law be answered."
"Wherefore, how great the importance to make these things known unto the inhabitants of the earth, that they may know that there is no flesh that can dwell in the presence of God, save it be through the merits, and mercy, and grace of the Holy Messiah, who layeth down his life according to the flesh, and taketh it again by the power of the Spirit, that he may bring to pass the resurrection of the dead, being the first that should rise" (2 Nephi 2:7-8).
Well, He did come and He did have the power to the impossible. He healed broken hearts, gave second chances and reunited loved ones. But more importantly, He fulfilled the Atonement. He paid the price for our sins so that we could become clean. He rose from the tomb on the third day so we will all rise again.
I wish I could accurately describe the feelings I have in my heart for the Savior. But I hope you all understand this: We do have a superman. We have a real superman. His name is Jesus Christ! The Son of God! The Savior and Redeemer of the World! The Great Mediator! He definitely earned all these names that were given to Him. I hope that everyone knows that when I call Jesus Christ the real superman, I'm trying my best to give Him the greatest respect that I can muster. After all, "who can glory too much in the Lord? Yea, who can say too much his great power, and of his mercy, and of his long-suffering towards the children of men? Like Ammon, "I cannot say the smallest part which I feel" (Alma 26:16).
I leave with you my testimony, that I know that Jesus Christ is the Savior and Redeemer of the world. I know that He rose from the tomb on the third day and that because He live we will live as well. We will see Uncle Marc, Grandpa Alley and all our loved ones again because the Lord has promised it and He always keeps his promises. I say these things humble in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
I love you all and miss you all. Now and forever, Hurrah for Israel!
Elder Michael Alley