The Underdog-Elder Ledesma


Morning, brothers and sisters. My name is Elder Ledesma. I've been serving here for about six months and it's really awesome to have served here. Last night I just got a transfer saying that I would be transferred to Anaheim. And Im sad to leave, but grateful to have served here.


A few things about me, I think most of everyone that knows me knows that I am from Oklahoma. I grew up on a farm. I did a few competitions and recitals, festivals and church activities. After my mission, I really hope to be able to get into the animation program at BYU Provo. I love animation, I love film, I love movies. It is because film impacts me. I can remember as a child watching something scary for instance It would be hard for me to sleep. Whatever I saw would pop up in my mind and effect the way I think and the way I act. But on the flip side, film can also motivate you or inspire. I know for me there is a common theme in movies, where there's always an underdog. Now, an underdog is somebody who has motivation or desire to become something great or to do something great. However, they are the least likely person to be able to do this thing. Nonetheless, they strive to meet this goal. I think everyone here has heard about the Blindside. Blindside is a football movie. It is a true story about this guy named Michael Ward. He started off in the movie as a homeless teenager, he then was taken in by a really nice family. Really awesome family. And they sound that he has a talent in football, however, he lacks in the educational area. So, through his grit and his hard work and determination and through the help of his family and tutors and definitely his heavenly father he was able to pass his classes and become a pro football player. Eventually, he went from being a homeless teenager to a pro football player.


Another movie that comes to mind is Legally blonde. It's main character, her name is Elle. She loves fashion. And she's also dating this guy named Warner. And Warner just got into Harvard law. He wants to marry a girl that's smart to make him look good. So he dumps her and she's super sad. She decides to go to Harvard Law and try to win Warner back. Eventually she does. She goes from not knowing anything about law to going into Harvard law and solving a case that nobody else could solve.


Another movie that comes to mind is Kung Fu Panda. I like this movie too. This is a good movie about a clumsy panda who has this dream of becoming a Kung Fu legend. Through lots of determination and hard work and training, with the help of Master Shifu, he's able to become the warrior that is needed.


All three of these movies that I just talked about have an underdog. We are all underdogs. We started off in a premortal life with our Heavenly Father, as spirits not able to progress past what we were. Because Heavenly Father loves us, he created a plan for us to be able to reach our full potential. And to do this, we would have to leave the presence of our Heavenly Father. We'd have to lose our memories. Wed have to walk on earth by faith. This task we learn, is impossible by ourselves.Heavenly. Father has given us help to be able to achieve our full potential. Heavenly father has given us his only begotten son Jesus Christ. Through the enabling power of the atonement we are given strength o be able to overcome the trials, and temptations and affliction of this life. He has given us the Holy ghost to provide constant companionship to help us stay on the covenant path. He has given us modern-day prophets to help us be prepared for the coming of the Savior. He has given us scriptures to help us learn from people in the past and grow our own faith and our own testimonies in Jesus Christ. We need to utilize all these things in order to achieve the impossible. I just like to quotel my mother for just a second. She would tell me, never do anything half-hearted. Which basically means to always do your best, to never give up, to always put your all into something. As a ballroom dancer, I would usually have to lift my partner and I love this. There's much fun. To be able to do this, you have to use teamwork. As the male, I'm the base and the strength. While my partner, she has to know what she's doing. She has to know the timing. She has to jump and give me the lift that I need to get her where she needs to be. In other words, I have to use what she gives me. I hope that she gives me the fullest. And adding on to this the base and strength, I also have to lift her up carefully. After bring her back down carefully, If I lift her up carefully and I get her where she needs to be, I'm like, awesome I did it. But if I just like stopped caring after that she could get hurt. I can get hurt. People around us can get hurt. This is the same as staying on the covenant path towards eternal life. If we don't use the help that it's given to us, If you don't give your personal all then somebody could get hurt.


There's a talk written by Elder Uchdorf last general conference titled, "Our heartfelt All." And he talks about this widow in the Bible. And he talked about how this widow how she gave very little to the church. However, she gave everything that she had compared to other people, who had given more than her, but not everything they had. Jesus Christ knows that she is even more heartfelt because she gave her all. We need to rely on the strength that Heavenly Father has given us and give our heartfelt all. We can reach our full potential, receive eternal life, eternal joy.


I would just like to bear my personal testimony by stating a scripture. My favorite scripture is 3rd Nephi 15:9. Its when Jesus Christ is teaching the Nephites. He says, "Behold, I am the law, and the light. Look unto me, and endure to the end, and ye shall live, for unto him that endureth to the end will I give eternal life. I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior. He has done the impossible so that we could live. The Book of Mormon is true and Russell M. Nelson is a true prophet, and this gospel is true. I know that I'm here to share this gospel.


In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen





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