The mission is such a valuable time for growth and learning. Sometimes it feels like the Lord is making me stretch and reach for the highest apple on the tree. But, once I reach it and exert all my efforts, the reward is so sweet. That crisp apple that I worked so hard for definitely pays off. When I reflect on my week, I realize the great gems of knowledge and experience that I've gained. And, sometimes I'm baffled that so much happened in just one week! There are definitely some great treasures being added to my eternal treasure chest.
This week I learned so much! I feel like I have really improved on how to have effective studies in the morning and to learn through the spirit. It's amazing what the spirit will reveal to you or what you can learn when you have help from above. One thing that has made a world of a difference is pondering. Even though we are limited to one hour for personal study, it's important that we take the time to ponder what we have read or learned! I've noticed that when I'm pondering is usually when the spirit speaks to me. I was studying one day this week with a question in mind: What can we do to rekindle the fire within these people who have fallen away from the church? I learned so much from what I studied. I read in Mosiah 4 and it was pretty much an outline for what we can do to gain a testimony. One thing that stood out to me the most was about how joyful the people were once they had repented and felt forgiveness for their sins. That was my answer. If we can get these people to repent for the things they are doing and really use the ATONEMENT, they will feel that fire within them start to burn. I don't know how anyone could NOT feel a fire burning within them after using the Atonement and feeling the sweet forgiveness provided by Jesus Christ. I think that is why the people were so joyful after they repented. They felt the burden of guilt lifted and they also had the opportunity to let the Atonement work through them. I've learned heaps more, but I'm excited to use what I've learned with the people we are working with!
There is one lady in particular that I am really excited about. We got her name and address from a member in the other ward, but he said he feels that the time is appropriate that we go visit her. She is a single mother with a one year old son who just moved to our side of town. When we visited her, she was super friendly and we chatted for quite a while. She told us that she really feels it is time that she goes back to church. Thank goodness we came when we did because she told us she was gonna try out the Christian church down the street! She was baptized when she was 13 but she said she never really understood anything. We are going to start teaching her tonight and helping her understand the basics of the gospel. As she understands the basic principles of the gospel, she will then start to change her behavior. She's already on the right track, but we are definitely here to help her along. I'm always amazed at the divine timing of the Lord. Originally when we were knocking on her door, she wasn't home. So we tried a couple times and took a moment to write a note to leave on her door. Then before we left, my companion pointed out a major wardrobe malfunction that I had going on, so we took another few moments to fix that problem. So when all was done we were getting in the car and literally backing out of her driveway when she pulled in out of no where and gave us a friendly honk on the horn. We got out and that's when we started to chat. My companion and I were talking and laughing about how if we didn't write a note or have that wardrobe malfunction, we probably would have missed her by just 1 minute. Things worked out great and the Lord is making sure we take care of His daughter.
It's seriously such an exciting time to be a missionary. Great things are happening and I am learning more than I ever thought was even possible. The church is true. There's nothing better than that sweet simple sentence right there.
|Manitou Springs hike on my P-day|
|I made a new friend|
|Doing work among the dead...wait...in a Cemetery? (and it's raining...creepy!)|
|This is literally this homes door bell.|