Monday, December 9, 2013

A Softened Heart Brings Strength to Endure

Holla Familia!!!
This week has been a interesting long one; longer than ones in the past. Things are starting to drag for the first time on my mission. There are several things that I feel like we could have done more this week but things just moved by in such a strange way. The first thing was that I have been sick for a few weeks in the morning, and I decided to stop being so stubborn about not letting people help me. So I talked to the Mission Nurse Sister Cloe (who also happens to be in the Christiansburg ward) and got a few ideas to try out this week. So far I have started to feel better so it must be working. Strange, how when you ask people to help you things start to get easier *sigh* silly me.
At the beginning of the Week we had dinner with a less-active family, the Romney's. They are an interesting Couple. Jen is really personable and nice (when she isn't in a bad mood), and her husband, Jared is like the complete opposite, he doesn't talk to people, and is blunt and kind of rude. but maybe it is just his personality that is weird. Jen told us that she isn't sure if the church is true anymore, because she has been getting a lot of anti especially about the early authority of the Church. She told us that they go to church because it is the right thing to do, and that it is a good environment for her kids to learn and to grow. She wants it to be true. She said something along the lines of that if it isn't true and heaven is different, at least she lived a relatively good life and that at least she was a good person. It is strange to see her have so much hope to believe that it is true, but she doesn't use it. She is looking into "neutral" sites about the church, but she isn't doing anything to build it up or make it true. I know for at least me that if I looked at "neutral" sites about the church I'm pretty sure I would not have learned very much from my hope that it was true. I had a good example to follow in college that helped me a ton! but I also had to act on the desire to change and learn more about the church! To find out the Truth for myself. Now I know quite a bit, not everything, not a whole lot, and most of it is random facts that aren't very helpful on a mission, but being able to study the scriptures and talk to people all the time here has really helped me see how much the Gospel has blessed and will bless my life as long as I am obedient and strive to be the best that I can be and serve those around me. President Pitt Missionary Truth last week was: A Softened Heart Brings Strength to Endure. I know for a fact that this is true. When we finally are able to let go of the things that will hold us back and not let us progress, then is the time that we really become who we can become.
Another Less-Active that we see is Paulette. She is doing really well, her husband died a few months ago and she found out where to bury his ashes, and she found out a few days ago that they got his marble tombstone at the Veterans graveyard thingy all set up and that it was very nice. We were able to teach her the Restoration - and she knows it is true, and she wants to find out more about the Plan of Salvation. She isn't sure exactly what happens after death (her husband was not a member) so she has a lot of questions on what happens. Where he is and what he is doing. She is really interested in the Temple, she shared how she had a very spiritual moment for herself there and knows that it is the house of God. That good, special things happen there. So it is good that we know what she needs to learn and hear. I realized that I have taken advantage of having a Temple so close at home. There is no Temple in our mission, and I won't be able to go to the Temple for another year. The importance of the Temple is more than anyone can understand. It is missionary work. It is Important. It needs to be done.
We haven't been able to meet with any of the Investigators that the previous missionaries left for us, One said to try back in January, another keeps canceling appointments with us (which we might just stop in and teach her; might be better that way), Another one was having a hard week and told us that she didn't have time to see us. The fourth one was sick so we will try her again this week and hopefully she is feeling better.
We had a Zone meeting this week and a few missionaries talked on Faith, Repentance, Baptism, and the Holy Ghost. Faith was based off of the talk Faith on Jesus Christ which helped me remember what is needed to build faith and get things moving. Repentance is a lot bigger than we think it is but it is super simple if we just start doing it. Baptism, how it is an ordinance and how we make a Covenant, and if we keep our promise, God will bless us. If we are not obedient then we miss out on them. The Zone Leaders talked on mostly about Endowment. How it is Obedience and Sacrifice to obey the Gospel, to be Virtuous, that we are Consecrated and most importantly Sealed. To become born again. It was super uplifting and a bit of a smack down on me for a few things that I have been forgetting to do. It was a nice reminder to get things going.
We also had a baptism this week!! We didn't know about her till this week, but it was a nice surprise! Her name is Ellen and she is 8 years old. Her father is a member and her Mother is a catholic. I have been told that she is a super smart little girl, we tried to see her before her baptism this week, but weren't able to get a hold of them. We set up a time to come and see them this week so we can start going over and talking to her and her family. The Baptism was really good. A family that had grown really close to Ellen's family (that had moved out of the ward) came to her baptism and did all of the talks and everything it was super sweet of them. It took them about 4 hours to get here. The mother in that family looked just like Joslyn!! only she was really, really tall. (So I know what you would look like if you were really tall Joslyn, just sayin).
We then also attended the Blacksburg Baptism and that was super neat to have been able to see two baptisms in one day!
Everything has been going pretty good this week, Sister Thomson is still getting frustrated with herself sometimes, but we made a promise this week to both become better. We set new goals to improve on. She wants to become like her old self and be able to talk to people again. I don't know what she was like before, but if that is what she needs, then getting her back to a comfortable zone will be nice. She has been difficult to get moving in the mornings. but she knows that she needs to be obedient in things in order to receive blessings. She expressed that she was frustrated that she couldn't feel the Holy Ghost as well. That there was something different. I helped her make a list of things that needed to be worked on. That she felt like that she wasn't doing that she needed to do in order to be obedient, in order to have that feeling of the Spirit with her again. I also discovered a few things that I have still been holding onto that I need to let go of as well, and start doing things right. So we are both working together on getting things moving.
So This week has been pretty interesting. Yesterday Church was canceled. The roads weren't icy, but all the cars and houses were covered in ice - so that was an interesting thing to see. Lots of Ice - like every time we went inside for a while we had to re-scrape our car. it was funny.
Oh Yesterday was really good for Sister Thomson, we went over to a members home, the Hallows. and they were talking about the Come Follow Me program that the Church has started to do that I'm not sure if it is being implemented here. I haven't even heard of it till yesterday! Sister Hallows and Thomson were very excited about it as they talked about it. It is something that Sister Thomson knows so I think that will help to use something she knows. We also watched the Christmas Broadcast and that was wonderful as well.

But the thing that tops this week off. Is that it was Sister Pitt’s birthday last week and President Pitt’s Today!!
I love everyone, and I hope they remember the importance of the Christmas season, and what it is really about. Do something awesome for someone else. Stay Classy. Soften the Hearts of those around you and It will bring you and them the Strength to Endure!

Until next week!

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