Monday, February 11, 2013
Monday, February 11
So things are still going well, the work is progressing. If things work out right Hillpointe ward will have baptisms 5 consecutive Saturdays. I never remember who all I tell you about. A is from Iran, originally Muslim, is a very spiritual lady, and has a strong testimony of just about everything we teach, but because of her English and history, it may take a while for her to get the full understanding. She's a mother of 2 or 3 that are under 8, and is going through a messy divorce. She is set for the 23rd, M the 16th, M the next, and then the other two aren't set but could be soon. A is M's 11 year old daughter who has been coming to church and just now gave indication she wants to take the lessons, M didn't want to at all feel she was pushing it.
We got a few referrals recently, helped one non member family move in from Idaho, they're Catholic but their Mormon friends contacted us and we set up to have almost 20 people there to help move, so the family was shocked and thought it was so amazing. Their name is the K family, they've got kids that are like 19, 15, 12, and 10 maybe. Oldest two are boys. So their fellowship family said they hate to be pushed, but the ward is reaching out to friendship them in many ways and they like us a lot so that's good.
Yesterday a member asked to come over so we could give her Catholic neighbor a blessing and that went really well. She's 70, and had this weird indigestion thing come up two months ago, hasn't had anything but rice and oatmeal since, and the doctors don't know why. Anything with flavor she can't have, even Peptobismal has too much flavor. We also got a random media referral the other day for a person, who we have come to realize is an excommunicated member. I think it was a long time ago, and he recently got tracted into by Spanish missionaries. His wife is a non member as well, (at least this one) but he's had a son serve a mission so I don't know all the details. No one in our ward knows him. But he's a really nice guy, in his 60s, he hunts and has a ton of animal heads all in his living room, as well as a picture of Darwin. He hasn't like decided he wants to come back by any means, but enjoys talking to us, loves the church for what it is, has only good things to say, but has no testimony of Joseph Smith. He said some thing like "well, I'm set in my beliefs, but I know you guys might be able to show me otherwise." so that's his take, we're going back soon. He just doesn't see how all the evidences of evolution can coexist with the church. He said for him its either the LDS church or science, and right now it's science obviously. So we're really excited to talk to him, he's opinionated and smart, but I think he is open minded enough as well for sure; he has no intent of changing our beliefs or saying we're wrong.
But yeah we've got our maps and rosters all color and numerically coordinated, so we can effectively make visits, so we spend a lot of time going through unordained and part member family lists. So we visited with A the other day, things aren't too good. He and his wife(less active) do like meeting with us and our message, but they're not too ready to change, so last time basically we just talked about what the gospel asks of them. Her testimony is an experience she had long ago were she shook the prophets hand and cannot deny that the church is true and that he was a prophet, as was Joseph Smith, but she's just been out of it too long to appreciate or know how to live it I guess. So we'll see how they do.
I haven't heard from Elder C in forever, but I'm really curious to hear how people are doing. I heard yesterday from our Zone Leaders that Vegas zone is set for 25 Baptisms in February, (and that's my old areas zone), so we'll see. And in the time I've been gone has been enough to see what's going to happen with a lot of the people we had recently started teaching, because either they've dropped us, or they've had more than all the lessons. But yeah, so things are good.
Elder P is fun and has a lot I can learn from. He has such a huge vault of amazing knowledge. In lessons sometimes he has such a perfect answer, that makes so much sense, is delivered quickly, full of evidences.. to the difficult and less common questions. And I don't think I've met another missionary that loves the scriptures as much as he does. If we're in the car, he's reading.
But studies are so much fun, there is so much cool stuff to study and understand, and learn. Recently I've been studying a lot of Isaiah, Ezekiel, Jeremiah etc. prophesies, especially with the symbolism of Christ's ministry to the church on earth, and then with stick of Joseph and Judah, and with King Zedekiah, the lineages, and Mulek. In the library we were waiting for the computers and we were looking through the Encyclopedia of Mormonism, and it gave so much insight about Mulek evidences that he did flee, and I thought I'd come to a dead end. Recently I've been doing more Pearl of Great Price, I want to get into that, I've already learned a lot. I've got some questions I'll try to save for another email.
But also, Sacrament meeting is such an amazing place to receive revelation, that's something that I've for sure learned earlier in my mission that was amazing to me but I don't think I ever really expressed it. Last Sunday our Stake President gave one of the most wonderful talks I'd ever heard. I was writing and pondering some certain things already, but then every time I paused to listen, he would be introducing or answering what ever question or thought I ran into that made me stop to listen, and the flow was so strange and irrelevant it would seem to anyone else. Because I wasn't basing my thoughts at all on his talk, but his talk was just following my interesting mind. But this is not at the only time I've had such experiences in sacrament on my mission, so many burning desires or questions of things I needed to hear just came, it's so amazing how the Holy Ghost works. Oh and like every time we find someone that has a particular or slightly obscure or specific concern, it SO frequently happens to be something that I thought or studied for my first ever time that morning or the day before. Scripture study is such an amazing way to bring the Spirit into your life.
But again Happy birthday James and Angela, Love you all!