Dec. 24, 2012
Hey there everyone! :)
You know, everytime I write something out in Russian on the keyboard I think about the time that Brandon sent home his letter in half Portuguese (I'm sure I spelled that wrong). I think that's so dang cool that he achieved the level of learning the language that he didn't even notice he was typing in a different language, but I'm afraid I can't say that at least when it come to typing on the computer. Everytime I try to type something I have to stare at the keyboard and find where the Russian letters are! Ah well, when I study it farther I'll get the keyboard down :D
MERRY CHRISTMAS EVERYONE!!!!!!
My gosh, pretty dang cool, right? Christmas number two on the mission. It's been a week full of miracles this week, and one that especially is super spiffy. There's an investigator who for a long time now has investigated the Church but never really made a whole lot of progress in becoming a member of the Church. She knows a ton, reads Doctrine and Covenants already, but still hasn't been baptized. It's been a bit of a struggle too because when we first came here and met with her the senior missionary couple have been against us meeting her. They had already met a good number of times with her with the other Elders before us and they counted her as being just someone who'd investigate the church forever but never join.
For the longest time, however, me and Elder Treter have prayed about and for her to know what to do, whether to stop meeting with her or keep goign to see if she can make some progress. Everytime we've done so we've gotten the answer that we should keep working with her and that things would work out. To avoid any trouble or doubt we'd been meeting with her without the missionary couple to help her out. Starting just a couple of weeks ago, things got rolling with her. She started praying with a lot more focus to find an answer and slowly but surely things have been working out.
We had district meeting on Friday and we reported on her status and progress in accepting the Church and the couple, as usual, weren't super excited that we were meeting with her. Nevertheless, we todl about how we had trouble getting member help for her lessons and they invited us to meet at their place with her (a miracle, considering how against it they had been in the past).
Before the lesson we sat down with the missionary couple and they asked us what theme we had planned to talk about with her. We told them that we wanted to talk with her about the Holy Ghost and recognizing answers from him as answers from God. Sister C mentioned that that was her favorite theme and the both said that they wanted us to direct the lesson and that they'd be there just as extras, just help whenever we turn to them and ask them questions. We said alright, and prepared for the lesson. The lesson began and, to my surprise, the C’s were talking the whole time! Well, really the C’s and our investigator, but me and Elder Treter weren't saying much at all. At first I was a little dissappointed that we couldn't get a word in, but I felt like I needed to felt them have their fill and talk. Lo and behold, they testified strongly of the Spirit and told about experiences in their life when God's help and answers came to them. It really touched our investigator and got her thinking about things. She was sick, so she requested a blessing (yeah, she already knew about blessings, tells you a bit how longs she's been investigating) and asked that Elder C be the one to give it. A wonderful blessing was given and she told us afterwards that she felt something in her heart, just a feeling that was big, overwhelming, but calming. We bore testimony that that was the Spirit testifying and helping her.
Then came the miracle. Elder Treter is still, usually, a little bit quieter on lessons, but this time it wasn't that way. He bore one of the most powerful testimonies I've ever felt in my life of God, His love and the fact that miracles and guidance from Him are real and come to us in life. I don't think I've ever cried so much on my mission as I did on that lesson. We were all in tears and the Spirit bore witness to us all of the truthfulness of Elder Treter's testimony. Our investigator then asked if she could talk more often to us and the C’s and she was commited to once again pray to God about baptism, and we promised her that she'd get an answer.
I can't really seem to describe just how awesome that experience really was. Me and Elder Treter have worked so hard to try and help her while we've been here and on this week, before we had that meeting with her, we had a special prayer for her and set specific goals and sacrifices so that she could have some progress and be baptised and so quickly we already saw an answer from Heavenly Father on our prayers and efforts. We have some really high hopes for her.
At this time of year, I really do remember the wonderful blessings that God has given all of us. Daily He provides for us, cares for us and blesses us. He helps every single one who seeks Him to find Him and recognize where and how to feel His love. I know that this church really is the Church of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior; and I know that it's thanks to his love, teaching and sacrifice that we are all here and have the opportunity to learn, grow and return back to God in love and glory.
I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas...because I sure am! God bless you, and eat some Christmas cookies for me, alright? :)
I love you!