Monday, October 3, 2016

Florida (October 3, 2016)

Hola everyone!

This weeks was great, and I especially loved watching conference as a missionary. It was so much easier to pay attention and receive personal revelation! One of my favorite talks was from President Uchtdorf. I loved how he cautioned us not to take the gospel for granted. I also thought about how I should not take my mission for granted. Even though the daily routine is the same, and it is sometimes easy to fall into the habit of going through the motions, I need to remember that this is truly a privilege! As Elder Oaks said in his talk "what could be more joyful than sharing eternal truths with God's children?" It is so true!

Right now I am reading about the story of Ammon in the Book of Mormon. I love reading about the people of Anti-Nephi-Lehi, they are incredible! I love that after they had become truly converted to the gospel, nothing would deter them. They would rather die than commit sin again, they were so humble, and later on when some of the Zoramites came to them for help the people of Ammon welcomed them with open arms. It is such a testament of what being truly converted to the gospel will do for you. We experience the greatest joy in becoming who we have the potential to become, and the gospel of Jesus Christ makes it possible for us to do that. 

One miracle that we saw this week was that due to a mix up of telephone numbers, we accidentally ended up visiting a lady who lives in our area, and speaks Spanish, but usually attends the English ward with her husband who only speaks English. It was a testament to me that God is aware of His children because she really needed a visit. She was sobbing, and feeling very depressed when we arrived. However, by the time we left she had calmed down and she was feeling much better. She even took us over to meet her non-member friend. We were able to teach her friend about the Restoration. It was a great experience to be able to be in the right place at the right time to help this lady feel better. 

Another cool experience happened one night while we were knocking doors. It was dark outside, and the street we were knocking was pretty creepy. It was time to head home so we started walking back to the car, but there was a big stray dog sniffing around between us and our car. We were feeling a little more nervous that night because it was dark, and this dog was really big. So, we decided to wait at the end of the street until the dog walked away. Well, we waited and waited, and eventually the dog moved. However, because we had waited for the dog we ran into a man on our way back to the car. We told him that we were missionaries and that we would like to share a prayer with him. He said his name was Gus, and that that would be fine. We asked if there was anything we could include in the prayer and he mentioned how his ex-wife and child were living in Miami, and that he wasn't able to see his child very often. He also mentioned that another child of  his had passed away a few years ago and he was looking for peace. The way he was talking you could tell that he was really struggling with life, and confused about his belief in God.

 He told us that he had gone to school to be a pastor, but that he had not been to church for a while. Well, I said a prayer for him, and he was very touched. He in turn offered a prayer for us. We tried to share our testimonies and at first he wasn't very receptive at all. He just kept trying to preach to us. Finally, we were super bold and straightforward with him. We just said "Gus, we know that we have the only true church on the earth. The only way to return to live with God is through the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints." Well, that got his attention. He listened to a little bit of what we had to say. He told us that he'd heard of our church before. We testified of the truthfulness of the gospel and God's love for him. He was absolutely shocked that "a couple of girls as young as ourselves" were so sure in our testimonies. At the end of our conversation he said "I will take one of your bibles now." (Referring to the Book of Mormon). He was so touched, he promised to read the Book of Mormon that night, and to come to church. We didn't hear from him again, but he said that "whatever you ladies set out to accomplish today,  you did it." It was so amazing to know that we had been able to help him feel the love of God, and learn a little bit more about God's true church. 

That's all for this week! I love you all!

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