Here it is, right in front of my face. TWO DAYS.
Have you ever looked back on a time in your life, perhaps high school, and laughed because it only seems like yesterday you were there, but yet stood still in sorrow as you recognize that time is past? A little faded and familiar? That’s how I’m feeling right now. Things already seem fuzzy.
I cannot express to you how incredible this time has been, serving the Lord. I have learned so much and experienced lots.. It’s been transforming.
I’m excited for what lies ahead. And the ability to really practice what I’ve taught and learned in a more real and truer sense.
I have found the greatest transformation to be my weaknesses. I know that the doctrine found in Ether 12:27 is real. My weaknesses have now become some of my greatest strengths (all are still in the refinement process).
Ask my parents, I have never been the most patient person. But with years of applying counsel and principles into my life, this sweet year and a half to really round things out, and great support and strength from God and my leaders, I’m happy to say growth has begun and the fruit is good.
The strengthening power of the atonement has become so evident in my life. I hope that as a witness of Christ I have done all that I could to share that with others. The atonement has been a powerful topic on my mission. Prepared people, once understanding the real need for the atonement, cannot deny the cleansing and strengthening power that the atonement can have in their lives. How sweet it has been to help and watch them choose to accept that. So many I have been around have willingly taken that step to follow our savior in the way that has been restored. Blessings and miracles have come because of it. Their lives and those in their family have improved greatly.
There’s is such a sweet change that happens in a person as they are learning about the gospel. I don’t quite know how to describe it but it’s rather bonding when you’re the one teaching them and trying to help them feel and understand. I’ve seen such a sweet change in those I’ve taught. I love them so much and can’t wait to continue to watch their lives blossom with the gospel and receive some of the greatest blessings the gospel has to offer in the house of the Lord.
Katie was baptized this Saturday and both her and Barbara received the gift of the Holy Ghost Sunday. What incredible steps they are taking!
I’m grateful that I have been involved in this special process in their lives at this time. I was just beaming with joy as I watched them get the gift of the Holy Ghost. I’m so proud of the steps they are taking:)
One amazing experience that took place this week is when we went to see the “A” family. We had heard that they were well fellow-shipped in the ward but we hadn’t seen them at church for a long while. We went to pay them a visit and see what was up. We shared the daily bread pattern Mormon message and that really opened a discussion about the gospel and the need for spiritual nourishment, they confessed they weren’t doing the basics. They knew they weren’t and proceeded to confide in us about their worries and doubts about the gospel. What they explained to me really opened my eyes. When we distance ourselves from God, who is Light, things become grey or fuzzy. They become unclear. I never want to allow myself to get to that point. We encouraged them and told them clearly and boldly what they needed to do if they really wanted a witness of the truthfulness of the gospel. They, thankfully, have open hearts.
Another neat growing experience for me was the opportunity to be a guide for our temple tour yesterday. Some background. You have to commit to memory 4 pages of notes about the 4 stops on the grounds of the temple, and no pressure but you have to be professional and be prepared to answer any and every question. In past temple tours I’ve been to, people have intentionally come to bash. So yes I was a bit nervous.. I practiced over and over and over again with sister Evans. We role-played things back and forth.
It was incredible though. I got to give the first tour. I was a bit nervous but my group was very cooperative and I loved seeing a few familiar faces from other areas I served in. There were a few moments where I forgot my part. My mind just went blank, so I testified of the restoration and plan of salvation. Luckily, by the spirit, I was able to remember the things which I had practiced over and over again. My favorite part was talking about the restoration and priesthood. I’ve spent 18 months getting those facts down haha.
Sister Mortensen was sweet and she told me I could be a temple square sister. I’m glad I got through it. It was neat to watch peoples wheels turning and I got to talk to a few of the investigators and answer their questions afterwards. We are lucky it stopped raining for us.
We had zone meeting this week. I just love zone meeting. We were trained on a lot of great things earlier in the week by President Mortensen. I gave the same training he did that Friday. I don’t want to boast but I really felt I gave it my all and many of the missionaries said they were moved by the training and pumped to refocus their vision and be bold and clear in their finding and teaching. It was special because I got to teach on topics I’m real passionate about.
A wonderful miracle happened today. I received an email from a recent convert as of September. It was a pleasant surprise to hear from her. While in Ponderosa we did a lot of finding in the evening and sought specific places and homes which we felt God led us to. One evening we felt prompted to knock on a specific home. We did and were welcomed back for dinner another night. We came and got to know the family well and talked about principles of the restoration and plan of salvation. I never saw that sweet family again as I was transferred but I found out today from her that she was later baptized and has been to the temple. We really don’t realize the great impact we have on others. I have found it to be so important to be a light to everyone around us and to share the gospel. Even though we don’t see immediate fruits from our efforts, they are making a difference. I’m so grateful she reached out to me!