Tuesday, September 4, 2012
Pics with Jihye & Lily
Hi everybody. :)
Aren't Sundays just the best day ever?? Heavenly Father blessed us lots this Sunday: we had SIX less-actives--Chrissy, Robbie, Blase, Angel, Josh, and Jared--show up to church this week! We have been working with/meeting with all these people for quite a while, and it was so rewarding to see them all there this Sunday! Robbie and Blase even stayed for the whole 3 hours! :) AND, on top of that, one of our investigators, Vinod, came to church, and he stayed for all 3 hours as well! (Of course, we're still trying to figure out his intentions and gain an understanding of what he thinks we do all this for. ;) But we were so happy to have him there nonetheless!) It is so fulfilling to see our efforts blessed and to watch others make their way back to Christ, even though it takes one slow step at a time.
Lily was also confirmed this Sunday! She couldn't be confirmed the day after her baptism because it was stake conference, so she had to wait a week... We were a little worried about that, but we had no reason to worry whatsoever. Her confirmation was so good! She's officially a member! Of course, she was practically a member already... we even drove her to an appointment once because it seemed so natural that we didn't even realize we were breaking the rules (we are allowed to drive members but not investigators). :P So that was probably the best day at church that I've had since I got here. I was very happy. :)
Funny story about Vinod though... we showed up to his house for an appointment on Friday and something weird happened... Another man answered the door and told us he had no idea who we were looking for. The name "Vinod" was completely unfamiliar to him. He said he'd been living there for a year and the guy we were looking for must have moved a while ago... But we had just been there teaching him in that very apartment 5 days earlier! And then the man left because he was literally on his way out the door to catch a plane. He just left us with a "sorry, I can't help you." So we called Vinod's number to figure out what on earth was going on, and a woman answered and said we had the wrong number. (He also hadn't been replying to any of our texts.) We felt like we were in the twilight zone!! Suddenly he had just disappeared... it was like he never existed and we had just been dreaming the whole time that we had been teaching him!
So we looked at the referral card with his phone number on it and compared it to the number in our phone... turned out we were one digit off. :) So we called the right number and he answered and said he'd be home in a few minutes. When he showed up, we asked him why his own roommate didn't know who on earth he was, and he said that his roommate only knows him by his last name--he had never even told him his first name before!! It was super funny. We felt bad though because he said he had been waiting for us to contact him last Sunday like we said we would so he could come to church... turns out we had been inviting a random stranger that whole time instead of him. Oops. :P Glad we worked that out though. It was really weird there for a minute.
Lesson I learned this week: "don't run faster than you have strength." I think that too often I focus on all these crazy advanced missionary skills I want to develop, and I'm trying to skip right over the basics. But when you think about it, a convert has to start from square one... we don't start teaching them about Kolob, or, as Elder Holland puts it, about the "celestial body temperature of glorified beings." We teach them about the first simple steps: prayer, scripture reading, attending church, etc. Why am I an exception? I have to master the basics before I'm ever going to develop advanced missionary skills. :) So this week I decided to start with sincere prayer. I noticed that not all my prayers are as sincere or heart-felt as they could be... and as I've started to pray with sincere, focused effort, really putting my mind and heart into it, I've noticed a big change already. Sincere prayer, as the Bible dictionary puts it, aligns our will with God's. Our desires begin to change. :) I'm still not doing it perfectly, but it's sure helping.
Last fun thing: JIHYE PARK CAME INTO THE BATTALION YESTERDAY!! :D Yay! It was soooo fun to see her! I hope all my amazing 230th ward friends are doing great. (Feel free to come down and see me with Jihye next time she visits her family in San Diego. :) )
I love you all! So does Heavenly Father!