Hi hi hi
Calling home is a little like Christmas (on a much smaller scale) the build up is so exciting. And then it happens and it's great and funny and your heart feels happy. Then you hang up..and it's all over. Back to normal life :) I sure loved hearing your voices but normal life is good too!
Some of you know but I will re-explain for those who don't (I can't remember if I wrote about this last week or not??). We are reading the Book of Mormon together as a mission over this transfer. We are supposed to read 13 pages a day to finish in time. It's amazing to me how wonderful and beautiful the day seems to be when you read the Book of Mormon. Everything goes better. I can't explain why. I'm just grateful.
Yesterday we were knocking and we met Wayne, who came out onto his porch to talk with us. He said he was religious but didn't go to church. He also mentioned how he could never change religions. He told us that his wife was sick and that he had a lot on his plate. His understanding of gospel topics was limited. We started testifying of the Book of Mormon. We told him about the role of prophets which is to testify of Jesus Christ. How Christ actually appeared to His "other sheep in ancient america." He read Moroni 10:4-5 out loud. We shared the first vision and told him about a living Prophet. He took the Book of Mormon and said he would read it. He didn't want to set up an appointment but he did say that if the Book was true and if it could bring him peace - he would give it a try. We left him with the promise that it would.
Mom wrote these words to me this morning and I really appreciated them, "I hope you are able to meet with the man you talked about - that wouldn't set up a firm apt - we all struggle so much with change - life is so crazy how things that are simple and true sometimes are the hardest for us to accept - so i do hope he will meet with you again.."
Nephi wrote words that were plain and easy to be understood and still so many stumble because of them. Sometimes I feel like we like to complicate things..though I have no idea why?? This has taught me about the importance of testifying. We will not always know what to say but God does and when we testify we allow the Spirit to speak. I feel that it was only when we bore testimony that Wayne really felt something stirring in his heart, And so that is a goal we have. Whether the person wants to talk or not - we will leave them with our witness of the truthfulness of our message. I too hope Wayne will experiment on the word (we'll follow up:)) because I know that the Book of Mormon can change his heart and his life!!!
The weather is beautiful. Sun actually makes people happier, I think. One day this week Sister Tegge and I drove out to Alyesford which is about 15 minutes from the center of town. For some reason we were both extremely tired..like past the tired stage. We were looking for former investigators when our trusty GPS led us down and unpaved road with SO MANY POTHOLES. We were going maybe 2 kph and just bouncing up and down (like we were on Indiana Jones - Nova Scotia style). We of course started laughing..mainly due to the tiredness and we couldn't stop. By the time we got to the end of the road we were both crying and couldn't breathe.
That was a good moment. I also want to tell you about Devon. He is a 15 year old member here and the only active member in his family. He comes to church every week by himself and to all of the activities. He is amazing. He'll text us often to tell us about the missionary experiences he is having. He talks to less actives every week to try to get them to young mens. He told us that his mom said "I think you are obsessed with the church." Last night we gave him fliers to hand out because we are having a branch movie night on Friday, Meet the Mormons, and we want to invite everyone we can. He basically started going door to door to invite all of his neighbours and was texting us to give a play by play of what they said and who he thought we could stop by later. I love his enthusiasm for the gospel. He knows what it is that he is offering. NO FEAR!! I wish we were all a little more like that.
This week we also had a wonderful stake conference. Something that really stuck out to me was the words of a young mother. She talked about faith and the trials she had gone through earlier in her life as a single mom with a premature baby. She said "I had to choose to have faith every day. Otherwise fear, hopelessness and despair would creep in and take over. The Lord will fight our battles when we honor and keep our covenants." CHOOSE FAITH. It is not a passive trait. It is something that we have to work for every day. We cannot just pray for more faith and then just wait and hope it magically comes.
Elder Clayton said this in the April conference, "Belief and testimony and faith are not passive principles. They do not just happen to us. Belief is something we choose—we hope for it, we work for it, and we sacrifice for it. We will not accidentally come to believe in the Savior and His gospel any more than we will accidentally pray or pay tithing. We actively choose to believe, just like we choose to keep other commandments." And God in His infinite goodness and mercy will bless us for our faith. He will work mighty miracles in our lives. He will fight our battles.
That is what I am going to try to do this week. Choose faith. And actively work for it!!
Also wanted to tell eli and emma b how excited I am to hear of their mission calls!! Ghana and Oakland California are LUCKY places. I know that God knows us. He is so proud of your decision to serve.
I love you all with my whole heart. Hope you have a happy, faith-filled week!! TTYL
Love, Sister G