Monday, January 2, 2017
Week 72 - January 2, 2017
Happy New Year's to all! I'm so excited for 2017 and what it has in store!
We had a wonderful week here in Phila. We set two more solid people with a baptismal date and are super pumped for January because we have two people already set to be baptized towards the end of this month.
This week was the first week we really had time to spend working in our area and will probably be the first full week we have the entire transfer!
This week we have golden re-training which is where all the Goldens who have been out a month come back together and we train them three separate days in three separate groups. We also have MLC (Mission Leadership Council) meeting this week, too. We are super busy.
The next week we have Mission Leadership Trainings for all the District Leaders and Zone Leaders - we are excited for that too!
Then we have to get transfers all figured out and then we will be onto the next transfer. Time sure does fly!
This week I got to go on two exchanges. My first exchange was with Elder Martinez in my old stomping grounds of South Phila. I got to see some recent converts (I guess they aren't "recent" anymore lol) and a few other families that I worked with. It was a great time for sure. We had a very powerful lesson on finding peace through Jesus Christ with one of the less active members who was a recent convert at the time I got there. He is one of my favorites and we were both in tears at the end of the lesson. Definitely love him a lot, he said at the end of the lesson he was going to start coming back to church. Love him.
This week we focused on testifying of repentance and the role of Jesus Christ. I'm so grateful for the gift of repentance. I was able to bear my testimony on repentance and the Savior at church. Repentance is not for perfect people, it is for progressing people. Our past is to be learned from, not lived in.
Ben, our Chinese investigator, brought his friend, James, to church. He loved it.
Jamie, a former investigator, after having lost contact with missionaries for quite sometime, finally was able to come to church and she is ready to start taking the discussions again - she's a great person.
I got to go on another exchange which was also so amazing. I brought Elder Haws to my area. He is from Ethiopia. He has to be the most Christlike person I have ever met... absolutely incredible. Wow. I can't believe how amazing he is!!! He came from an Islamic background. He said that after being taught for quite sometime by the missionaries, they were about to give up because he wouldn't accept Christ as his Savior, but then they read 2 Nephi 31:20-21 which reads:
"Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life.
And now, behold, my beloved brethren, this is the way; and there is none other way nor name given under heaven whereby man can be saved in the kingdom of God. And now, behold, this is the doctrine of Christ, and the only and true doctrine of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost, which is one God, without end. Amen." He said he felt the Spirit so strongly testify to him that Christ was the only way to salvation that he accepted it right then and there on the spot. We had a great time and got to teach some great lessons. It was an odd day - lots of miscommunications throughout the day but everything has a way of coming together. Christlike adaptability!
I was reading in the Doctrine & Covenants this week in Section 19 and verses 16-18 stuck out to me:
16 For behold, I, God, have suffered these things for all, that they might not suffer if they would repent;
17 But if they would not repent they must suffer even as I;
18 Which suffering caused myself, even God, the greatest of all, to tremble because of pain, and to bleed at every pore, and to suffer both body and spirit--and would that I might not drink the bitter cup, and shrink--
I am thankful for my Savior, Jesus Christ, who suffered, bled and died for us all that we may be able to be forgiven of our sins as we repent. He invites all of us to come unto him and be perfected. This New Year's I hope we all make goals (that we stick to) that will enable us to make changes that bring us closer to our Savior.
Happy New Year!
Love you all,
Who said I wasn't on a Chinese related mission?!