Well another week is over, transfers are over and I'm in Grafton for another transfer. I'm really excited to have another transfer in Grafton, even though that isn't how I originally felt. I wanted to leave Grafton but I'm not exactly sure why, okay I guess I know why, but it could have been many different reasons. I found that I was trying to change the will of Heavenly Father instead of accepting it. But after I realized that Heavenly Father knew I needed to stay here, my attitude started to change. I realized that Heavenly Father had it laid out for me long ago that I would serve a mission, that I would serve in the Sydney Australia North Mission, with President and Sister Howes. He knew that I would serve in Grafton and companion I would serve with. He knows my whole life and he knows exactly what needs to happen so that I can be placed on the right path at the right time and in the right place. Heavenly Father has something for me to do here in Grafton at this time and what that is I'm not sure, but what I do know is that I am going to try my best to accomplish it. I know that I'm not perfect and that I make mistakes, but I know that I am supposed to here at this time to serve my Heavenly Father. When we place our trust in Heavenly Father everything goes better. Trust in Him and he will guide you.
This week I was really tried in my patience and love for the people. I tell people when we teach them that these changes that they are making might be really difficult. They take time and sometimes mistakes will be made. And the problem is, they heard that but apparently I didn't. I wanted to give up on them. But then I had the thought, would Jesus give up on these people? I then thought well if he did we wouldn't have the Atonement and we wouldn't be able to repent and be forgiven, over and over again. So I am really trying to be patient, loving and supportive as I can with these people that we teach. One of them in particular had been doing so well, he had quit smoking and he was starting to feel the spirit and he was really growing and progressing. This was about 3-4 weeks that he hadn't been smoking, then we go over to his house and we smelled smoke again. I was really discouraged and I was like, why isn't he changing and why isn't he feeling it? But then I remember Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father and how frustrated they get with me. I'm not perfect, but they have perfect love for me. So that is what I am trying to have for other people. When we really think about how much Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father loves us, it really changes you and makes you think differently about how you love others. Being a missionary is not an easy task and sometimes people let you down but I know that as I strive to do everything I can, people will be blessed and they as well as I will grow.
One thing I really loved seeing was how much God really prepares people for our visit. We met with one former investigator. He hasn't seen missionaries for about 6 years. We taught him about prayer on the doorstep and then we made another appointment. We went back on Tuesday night and we knocked and no one answered. We could hear him showering so we decided to wait, then he came out and we had a GREAT lesson. The spirit was so STRONG. It was one of those times when the spirit just tells you exactly what to say. It was incredible. He asked all the right questions and I know he felt the spirit. We haven't been able to see him again but I know that Heavenly Father is taking care of him. We also had a very powerful lesson with an investigator yesterday. That certainly started the week off with a bang. He was really so prepared. He even got a little teary eyed wondering why everyone couldn't just believe in God and follow him. I felt prompted to pull out a BOM and he was like "can I look at that?" I told him sure, and then we said that we wanted him to have it and read it. He looked like I had just given him pure gold. I loved that. I'm so grateful to have experiences like this to see people get so excited about the Gospel, it makes me love it even more. I know that not all of these people accept the Gospel at this time, but I'm grateful that I can be the tool in God's hands to prepare them, when they are ready.
My main goal is to help others come unto Christ. I really am trying hard after every lesson to ask myself if they came closer to Christ in that lesson. If they did then it was successful, if not, what can we work on to help them to feel closer to Christ? I really want to help people increase their faith in Jesus Christ. I am striving to do the same in my life so we can help each other. The quote in preach my Gospel says "You cannot convert someone above your own level of conversion..." or something along those lines. If I want others to increase their faith then I have to do the same. I really want others to build their foundation in Jesus Christ to help them withstand the temptations from Satan. I know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the true church on the earth today. I know that Jesus is the Christ and that my Heavenly Father loves me and all of his children. I'm so grateful to serve the Lord to help build up his kingdom. And just like Elder Packer said, "If someone is looking for a Church that requires very little, this is not the one. It is not easy to be a Latter-Day Saint, but in the long run it is the only true course." I want to find the Children of God who are ready and willing to commit their lives to the Savior, and I know that is possible through Heavenly Father. I hope you have a wonderful week full of miracles, you are in my prayers.
Love you all,
Sister Alexis Benjamin
|This was a gift from one of the families they are teaching.|