So, this week has been quite exciting! I’m in a different area now, the one right next to my other area. I am with a new companion, and not in a tri-panionship anymore. I‘m really excited to start serving with my new companion, Elder B. I’ve known him since I’ve been here, and we get along well. He is from Los Alamitos California, so that’s sweet. He is a good missionary, obedient, and has good desires, which I think is most important. If the Lord looks on the heart, then we should try to also. But really, I like to know the reasons for actions, especially with myself. So this should be a good time.
We are both fairly new to this area, so we don’t have many people to teach. We are starting off small, but we will build it up big! We are going to do our best. So we are trying to build the relationship with the ward right now, because we realize we literally need them. Last Sunday was great, and people are starting to realize that I’m here. I introduced myself in Elders Quorum, but I don’t know why, because I did three weeks ago. So that kind of shows our problem, we need to strengthen our relationship with them. Oh, let me clarify real quick, there are two areas in the same ward, so I’m in the same ward at least.
Anyway, I loved what you said about listening to the people. It is truly what we need to do. People won't think they need anything, unless we can help them to realize they do, by discerning through the Spirit. Last week we were going door to door, and this lady said she didn’t want us to come back because she had lost her son five years ago, and was still having a hard time. All we said is that the Gospel helps with that type of thing, and she still said no, so we left and kept going.
We got home later that night, and I kept on thinking about that lady and how much she needed the Gospel and the Atonement and the knowledge. We didn’t convey anything to her! She probably just thought that all we had to offer was going to church. I could just tell by the way her face looked, I mean her expression, and the way she talked, that she was having a really hard time. So I couldn’t really let that stand how it was. So we went back and I said, I know you told us not to come, but there’s a video I thought could really help out with your situation. And she said she would accept the video, and so we need to take it to her. The video is Finding Faith in Christ, by the way. Now it’s up to the other Elders to take it to her, but I’ll make sure they do.
It was just crazy how much love I felt for her, and how much I wanted to help her. I know that it is the Lord's love working through me. I just wanted to do everything I could to help her. It was crazy! So, hopefully we can help her. I know that it is so important to listen to people and discern their needs with the Spirit. Look into their eyes, and it will be given to you through the Spirit. Even if they only talk to you for 15 seconds!
We have also had some nice experiences with the Michigan weather. It’s funny, everyone talks about the weather here. "Oh you’re from California, huh? How do you like the weather?" It’s not too weird. It just randomly rains sometimes, and it can be pretty humid. We were tracting, and then it just started pouring rain. Then we went to our dinner appointment on our bikes, and it started pouring. The drops of rain were huge, it was like we jumped in a pool. The pants that I have, called American Rag are sweet. I’ve been wearing those mostly. They dry from the rain super quick.
Something kind of funny is that everyone has screen doors here, so it’s so much fun talking to people through their screen doors, where you can’t hardly see them, but they can see you! One time I tried to open it to talk to them, and the guy like reached forward to hold it shut, and shook his head. People get pretty sensitive about us opening the door. That’ll be the last time I do that!
Something I realized is really important, and I love thinking about, I mentioned it earlier in the letter, it is doing everything with sincerity and pureness of heart, and with the right desires. It is a test of our true character and our integrity. I think it is really cool. If we are pure in heart, we are always more at peace, and more receptive to the Holy Ghost.
For instance, following a certain commandment, think first...why am I doing this? Then dig down deep and find the true reason, because in the Doctrine & Covenants the Lord says, all the commandments He gives us are spiritual and not carnal. So if we are following a commandment carnally, but the true desires of our Spirit are not, we aren’t truly following the commandment. Do we glory in righteousness or do we glory in wickedness? Do we wish we didn’t have to do something? I know I have felt like this quite a bit throughout my life, and I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, because we are judged on the desires of our hearts, but I know our hearts can truly be changed through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, and by listening to the promptings of the Spirit. By consistently living the commandments, we gain a stronger and stronger testimony, if we are living it with sincerity, and because we love and trust in our Heavenly Father.
It is an honor to be able to serve the Lord for two years, to represent Him. How does He entrust us with all this? This is going to be a point in my life where I look back and say, I couldn’t have done anymore, and I couldn’t have done any better. We will be working our hardest...doing our best. And I know we will be able to find some people to teach!
Glad to hear the Seminary kids are getting their missions going! It’s the best! Tell them to write me letters! I love you all and I hope you guys have an awesome week! Thanks for all the updates on everything! You are in my prayers!