Monday, July 20, 2015
Mon, Jul 20, 2015 "When you realize how perfect everything is, you will tilt your head back and laugh at the sky."- Buddha
So you might be wondering...how is my English coming along? Let me tell you. The Lord is working miracles here and I can speak English fluently. Haha.
Oh my goodness. I don't even know where to begin. There have been so many miracles that we have seen this week. God is so good. So I guess I will start with the end of the week since it's so fresh on my mind...and because it was amazing.
So we have goals in the mission set by our mission president called the standards of excellence. These are goals that we strive to hit every week. It includes lessons, how many people we talk to, new investigators, and so on. Sister Wright and I worked so hard all transfer to hit these and every week we have been so close. Last night, we were so close again. All we needed to hit standards was either 1 more baptismal date or one more investigator attending sacrament meeting. It was such a bummer to find out that Connie wasn't able to go to church while she was dog sitting in Victoria. Sister Wright and I just looked at each other an wondered how in the world we were going to hit standards? So...we got to work. We felt like if we gave everything we had to the Lord and just gave Him all of our diligence, we would see a miracle. We felt prompted to go to Laura's and set a baptismal date with her. Now let me tell you, this is not an easy thing. Laura has loved progressing slowly. And it's actaully been frustrating for us because the only way she is going to progress is if she has something to look forward to...or a goal.
So our game plan for this lesson was to go in, invite the Spirit, help her realize what her goals and desires are, and then set a baptismal date for her. Wow, this lesson was intense, but it was definitely guided by the Spirit. We shared this quote with her to start off, "I am so thoroughly convinced that if we don't set goals in our life and learn how to master the techniques of living o reach our goals, we can reach a ripe old age and look back on our life only to see that we reached but a small part of our potential. When on learns to master the principles of setting a goal, he will then be able to make a great difference in the results he attains in life."-Elder M. Russell Ballard. I also love the line in Preach My Gospel that says, "Goals reflect the desires of our hearts and our vision of what we can accomplish." So then we asked Laura what her goals are. She said to be a Christ-like person. I love that....and we helped her realize that we are giving her all the tools she needs to do that. Then we tried to set a baptismal date with her. She is just so worried about her job and not being able to come on Sundays. We tried to resolve her concerns, but she just kept going off on all of these things which really can be resolved. I mean anything can be resolved if we put our faith in Christ. So I said to Laura, "So basically what you're saying is you need a miracle?" She said, "That's exactly what I'm saying." Then I paused for effect, then said, "Perfect!! I have a scripture for that!". Haha Sister Wright and Laura died laughing. We read Mormon 9:19-20. "And if there were miracles wrought then, why has God ceased to be a God of miracles and yet be an unchangeable Being?" I know that God truly is a God of miracles. We weren't able to set a date with Laura, but it helped her take a few steps in the right direction. I really should have kept those verses in mind for the rest of the night.
Sister Hoth and Sister Wright in Sidney June 28, 2015
This is Theresa . . . Sister Johnson taught her when she was when she was here! She has a solid baptismal date . . . the elders are teaching her. Sidney July 3, 2015
Sister Wright & Sister Hoth
Lunch at the Woodshed Pizzeria July 6, 2015
Laura and me! Those ice creams were supposed to be smalls. Ha!
A visit to the famous Butchart Gardens! July 13, 2015
We did everything we possibly could to hit standards. And we didn't hit them. Wow, the disappointment hit me. We did all we could, worked hard, and put so much faith in God. I hate to say it, but I was wondering why it was even worth it to work so hard and to have faith if it didn't produce anything. Just then as we were having our little pity party, the elders in our district called us. They asked if we had so and so on our list of investigators...we looked...we did. Then they said, "Well awesome, we set a baptismal date with her tonight and we talked to the Zone Leaders and they said we could give it to you." We hit standards...God hasn't ceased to be a God of miracles. Boy, was I called to repentance. How could we lose faith so fast. This whole experience reminded me so much of life.
In life, we give all we have. All our time, energy, and heart to the Lord. We do this, hoping for eternal life and trusting that we will receive it. It's so hard though because all of us fall short. We make mistakes. We distance ourselves from God. Then on that glorious judgement day, we feel as though we haven't made it to the Kingdom of God. We remember all we did in life and how we didn't reach all of the goals God set for us. And just as we begin to question why we worked so hard and why we had so much faith, we hear the voice of our Savior, "You've done it!" "Come unto me, ye blessed, there is a place prepared for you in the mansions of my Father." -Enos 1:27. We made it because of Him. Because of His infinitive, atoning sacrifice we can make it. We do all we can, and He fills the gap. So you might ask, has God ceased to be a God of miracles?" I say to you, "he chageth not; if so he would cease to be God; and he ceaseth not to be God, and is a God of miracles. Mormon 9:19.
I love my mission so much! I love the opportunites to become the person God needs me to be. One of the greatest blessings of all is to be a part of someone's journey in coming to know God. I have had such a small time with Connie, but I have seen her change so much. She is getting baptized this Saturday and my heart is so full. She just glows. I love how much she has changed. She has such an amazing Spirit and is looking forward to her baptisms. (As soon as she finds earplugs...she is so funny). Please pray for her and for all the missionaries!