This week has been an interesting week. We didn't get any new investigators, but we have faith that miracles will happen this week. In reality, we did have a lot of miracles, just maybe not in the way we expected. We were able to teach the Plan of Salvation to our neighbor. We have been teaching her for a month now. It was a really good lesson, but holy cow! Satan didn't want us to teach that to her. The opposition that was coming at me, Sister Fraire and Sister Allgood was intense all day last Wednesday. We knew we needed to teach [Name Withheld 1] the Plan of Salvation. We ended up having a really good lesson with her. She really liked the concept of the three degrees of glory. We were surprised that the biggest problem she had with the Plan of Salvation was pre-mortal life. We have a lesson with her this evening to talk more about how she is a daughter of God. We are really excited about it. :)
Last night we had our only investigator with a baptismal date tell us that he has been praying and he doesn't feel like Mormonism is for him. He told us he felt like God was telling him he needed to go a different way in his life. It was a heart breaking moment. He hasn't completely stopped meeting with us yet, he agreed to read 3rd Nephi 11 & 17 and keep praying about the Book of Mormon and meet with us at least once more. [Name Withheld 2]'s biggest problem is that he can't wrap his mind around modern day prophets. He has grown up being taught that the Bible is it and there is no more that God had to say. We told him that as he prays he must be open to the idea that all the things we teach him could be true.
After he and our member left, the three of us said a very heartfelt and sincere prayer. We prayed desperately that He receives some kind of answer and keeps meeting with us. He will be such a great member of the Church. However, all three of us felt the Spirit tell us that Heavenly Father is in control. He is aware of him and what he is going through. We want to do all we can to help him receive the restored gospel but also realize that this is all in the Lord's hands. It may not be time for him yet, I don't know. We love him and really only desire for him to find the joy that the gospel brings. We all have felt strongly that "all flesh is in [the Lord's] hands" (D&C 101:16). [Name Withheld 2] may not accept the message of the Restoration at this time in his life, but I'm confident that he will at some point in his life. The Lord is working with him and will continue to work with him throughout his life. Regardless of what happens, at least we have grown closer to Heavenly Father and as a companionship through this experience. I know the Lord knows everything and is aware of what each of His children needs. I know he is very aware of me and my needs. I have learned and changed so much since I've been on my mission. A lot of the times that learning and growing is painful, but I know I am becoming the Woman that God wants me to become because of it.
I am thankful for all the wonderful things I'm learning from Sister Fraire and Sister Allgood. I am thankful for Sister Allgood's ability to play the piano. Yesterday after our lesson with [Name Withheld 2] she played the Hymns, "Saviour, Redeemer of My Soul", "Sing We Now At Parting" and some other ones. It brought the Spirit and really calmed my troubled heart.
Thursday we talked to Jeff about starting his family history work. Jeff is the ONLY member of the Church in his family. Not only is he the only member of the Church in his immediate family, but also the first in 100's of years. Jeff committed to start his family history work and prepare names to be taken to the temple! :D I can't even describe the feeling that came over me after we were done talking with him! I feel SO BLESSED to have been one of many instruments in the Lord's hands in bringing Jeff into the Church of Jesus Christ. It is an indescribable feeling, but my heart was overflowing with gratitude and joy. Even as I talk about it now I feel so happy! It is amazing & humbling to know that the Lord is using me, an imperfect person, to accomplish his purposes. (Moses 1:39)
I have learned that each of us has a far more reaching effect on other people than we realize. I love being a missionary because the work we do reaches far beyond what we see. As we fulfill our purpose and help others come unto Christ by helping them receive the restored gospel through faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost and Enduring to the End we effect generations. Jeff is sharing the gospel with his mom and brothers and soon will take names of his family who have passed on to the temple. His conversion to the gospel will affect generations in the future as well. And there are tens of thousands of people like him! This work truly is marvelous!
I love what Elder Holland said "Contrary to the parlance of the day, this is about you. No, don’t turn and look at your neighbor. I am talking to you! I have struggled to find an adequate way to tell you how loved of God you are and how grateful we on this stand are for you. I am trying to be voice for the very angels of heaven in thanking you for every good thing you have ever done, for every kind word you have ever said, for every sacrifice you have ever made in extending to someone—to anyone—the beauty and blessings of the gospel of Jesus Christ."- Elder Jeffrey R. Holland (“Because of Your Faith”, Ensign, Oct 2010)
I have thought a lot about the scripture in Alma 26:27 over the past few weeks. "Now when our hearts were depressed, and we were about to turn back, behold, the Lord comforted us, and said: Go amongst thy brethren, the Lamanites, and bear with patience thine afflictions, and I will give unto you success." I know that things in life are hard. It doesn't matter at what stage in life you are at, things are hard. However, I do know without a shadow of a doubt that this gospel WILL help you overcome any of the challenges you face in your life. The Gospel of Jesus Christ heals the wounded soul (Jacob 2:8) and brings comfort when all seems lost. I know this church, which teaches the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ, is true. I know it, I live it, I love it!
|My pumpkin.... I didn't know what to|
paint, so I just painted whatever came
to mind. So, this is what I came up with.
I found this scripture this morning which gave me a lot of peace. 1st Corinthians 15:58 "Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord."
I want to thank all of you for all you (and like Elder Holland, said "don't look at your neighbor, I'm talking to you.") have done to help me become converted to the gospel of Jesus Christ. Thank you for teaching me by your example. I am so blessed to be given the opportunity to be here in Oklahoma serving the Lord. I thank all of you for the role you have played in getting me to this point in my life. I will forever be grateful to you for you love and sacrifice. :D
Love, Sister Record