Monday, August 12, 2013

Monday, August 5th 2013

The mission is going fantastically. We have seen a lot of miracles this week, especially yesterday after we finished our fast. The power of fasting and prayer is amazing! It's really like a super prayer. We just "happened" to be in the right places at the right time all day yesterday. The Lord truly does care about His people.

The first part of the Sabbath really was disappointing because none of our investigators showed up to church even though we had been fasting for them to. I do know everything is according to God's will and I had to keep on reminding myself about that. We had a lof of meetings after church so we weren't able to really get out and talk to people. We actually ended up walking 2 miles from one building to another because we didn't have our bikes, but a very nice lady stopped and gave us a ride for the last mile. We really are so blessed to have great members here.

After dinner to had a meeting with a member family who gave us the referral for Julie and Johnny. They had forgotten about it and weren't home. So we started walking again and 3 doors down we saw a girl, Jazmin, we had talked to last week with her brother who had set up an appointment (he hadn't been at the appointment last Wednesday). We ended up talking with her and she said she would be interested also in learning and that her brother still was interested. She got her brother to come down and we set up another appointment. His parents are also okay with us meeting with their kids.

The miracle was this: while we were talking with Jazmin and Chase, Johnny had come outside. We hadn't met with Julie and Johnny for the past 2 weeks. Johnny said hello and said when we were done to come and see them. MIRACLE! We went over there and they had just finished having a party for their two year-old son. We talked with them and shared a scripture about families and how we can be sealed forever. Johnny said he is most interested in this part of what we have said so far. We're hopefully going to be going to the Visitor's Center with them so they can see the Temple. They looked exhausted and Julie was sick with a cold. We offerred to help clean up the house. They wouldn't let us, but I knew they secretly really did want our help. So I just said, "we're helping you!" and started picking up toys and cleaning the kitchen. Julie afterwards said she had felt overwhelmed with cleaning up and was very grateful. It was really nice to finally do service for someone. No one lets us do things for them even though we offer all the time, all day long.

On Monday we were able to go to the Visitor's Center with Barbra. She loved it and the spirit was very strong. I love going to the Visitor's Center because there is so much we get to show to our investigators we normally can't (and of course the extra bonus of seeing Sister Hamstead-- I did get to see her! YAY!). It was very touching to see Barbra's reaction to the little walk through of 'God's Plan for Families'. She was very touched herself. She's having a lot of difficulties right now. It's amazing how much Satan does not want people to be baptized. It always seems like everything that could possibly go wrong, does. She couldn't come to church yesterday because she's with her ex-mother-in-law at the hospital. We've now met basically her entire family- daughter, daughter's boyfriend, son, and now her ex-husband. What an interesting reuion I must say. She's still on track to be baptized this Saturday and we're really excited for her and how much it will change her life.

On Wednesday I was able to go back into my first area because I went on exchanges with the STL, Sister Neal. It was fantastic to be there and to see everyone. It's weird to see how much it's changed and also how much it's stayed the same. The Lord definitely had a plan for that day. We had six unplanned teaching opportunities and we were able to have two new investigators. I also got to see Sherry!!! It was just marvelous to see her and to actually see how she's doing. Unfortunently, this has been a hard year for her and she's going to be moving soon, but she hopes to move back into the same ward. The day was full of so many miracles in that area! There were also good times going in my area with Sister Pooley and Sister Peck. We taught a new investigator, Korbin. He's a referral from a recent RM. From what I've heard Korbin is solid and he's a great person. I can't wait to teach him on Wednesday. They also got in with a less active- we've been knocking on that door since I got into this area. AMAZING!

We have also been able to finally meet with the recent converts in one of our wards. It was great to see them. They've been struggling unfortunetly and we've had lessons set up, but they haven't been home whenever we go by. We were also able to meet with a former investigator, Jolyn. She saw us outside and wanted us to come in and talk with her. We ended up talking with her and also a girl, Sasha, who lives in the house. Sasha was quite stand-offish at first and she didn't want to say anything to "offend" us. We assurred her we wouldn't be offended. Sasha said she really confused about religion and God. She ended up accepting a Bible, Book of Mormon, and a Restoration pamphlet. She's moving back to WY so we won't know what will really happen with her unfortunetly. Joyln really isn't interested, but she was nice.

I love teaching people and seeing the impact the Gospel makes on their lives. Today I was reading in Alma 57-58 about the 2,000 stripling warriors and their example. Because they kept their covanents, trusted in the Lord, obeyed with exactness, and had strong faith they were blessed. Not one of them were killed in all of the battles they participated in and it was because of their Christ-like attributes they had. All of them were wounded, but none killed. The Lord blessed them, but it didn't necessarily mean they were free from all harm. They still had to hurt and go through hard things. When life gets hard, the Gospel might not makes things easier, but we will recieve blessings from living it. I know this to be true with all of my heart. I really do love everyone I come into contact with. The power of charity is real. When we see through our spiritual eyes and when we are motivated with love, people can tell. Peoples hearts can be changed.


Sister Collins

Lauren, investigator and Sis. Pooley at the Mesa Temple