Wow. What a fantastic week full of many mighty miracles.:)
My core experience with God this week was definitely witnessing the baptism. Originally just the two boys were supposed to be baptized but because of lots of faith and prayers, their mom was able to be baptized as well. Wednesday night we were with their family teaching them about the temple and how families can be sealed for time and all eternity. As we were speaking the spirit was really strong. We looked at her and she had tears in her eyes.
We weren’t sure why but we felt to just wait until she was ready to speak. She just looked at us with the deepest look of longing in her eyes and said she wanted so badly to be baptized. She said she had been thinking about all the things we had discussed and taught and how she had felt. She said she believed it whole heartedly, that it was true and she wanted to be baptized. We wanted so badly to say yes. So we talked to our priesthood leaders and made sure it would all be alright and they cleared it and said yes.
She had her interview the next night and she was over the moon! She just kept saying “I can’t believe I’m getting baptized! I can’t believe it! I’m so lucky!”
Then their baptismal service was absolutely beautiful. The spirit was so strong. I really learned the power in doing what our mission president says about having someone speak after they get baptized waiting for them to get changed. It captures the spirit and invites everyone there to change. There was even a less active lady there who had been contemplating coming back to church and because of the powerful spirit she decided to recommit herself to follow Jesus Christ.
One of my favourite parts of the baptism though was the mom. After she got baptized she looked at us with the biggest smile on her face, her eyes wet with tears. She was so happy! It was powerful to watch. She definitely increased my testimony of the amazing opportunity the Lord gives us to be able to be baptized and become clean, and commit ourselves to follow him. Sister L also sang at the Baptism and it was powerful. We really could feel our Savior’s love as she sang. And I love that our Bishop got up afterwards and bore powerful testimony, with a few tears in his own eyes of the love the Savior had for their family and for all of us.
Witnessing their baptisms makes all the hard times in the field worth it. You just have to work through all those times to be able to witness the miracles.
It reminds me of the scripture in Mosiah 5:7
7 And now, because of the covenant which ye have made ye shall be called the children of Christ, his sons, and his daughters; for behold, this day he hath spiritually begotten you; for ye say that your hearts are changed through faith on his name; therefore, ye are born of him and have become his sons and his daughters.
Now when miracles occur also, the hard times come. This week in my practice as teaching as the Savior taught I learned how important it is to always have constant spiritual nourishment.
We called up a recent convert Saturday night to see if she would be coming to Church with us the next day. She hadn’t been for a while, because of work and we knew that she really needed to come. And the phone call we had was pretty rough. She has had a really good friend who was very instrumental in her conversion, who has now left the Church. She has been telling her all these things about the Church, that she knows are wrong, but because she is such a good friend it has been hurting her testimony. WE spent about an hour on the phone speaking with her and trying to reassure her, bearing testimony and telling her how much we loved her, and how much Heavenly Father loved her, and even her less active friend. When we hung up my heart felt heavy and I really wanted to help her, but I knew I couldn’t do much else.
Sister L and I knelt down and prayed for quite sometime asking Heavenly Father to watch over her and bless her, and of course for His will to be accomplished. We asked what we should do and the path that we should take. I felt the strongest prompting that “this too shall pass.” I was reminded of all the trials she went through and the times she went cold before her baptism, but she was able to overcome it and she will be able to overcome this as well.
We sent a text to all the ward members and tried to unify all our efforts in support of her. And unfortunately she didn’t come to Church the next day. But the miracle happened when our wonderful Ward Mission Leader went over with the Elders and was so bold and loving with her. She was very cold as they entered but after the power of the spirit she came back to her old self again. She shared all her concerns and they were able to testify of the truth and help her to understand why these things were happening. I felt peace in my heart, knowing that the ward loves her, and will support her. That it doesn’t have to just be the missionaries but the members will sustain our beautiful sister and friend.
I found this experience interesting because all week I had been studying from the war chapters in the Book of Mormon and contemplating a lot of various things that really had stood out to me. And I found it very comparable to this situation.
In Alma 50:23-25
23 But behold there never was a happier time among the people of Nephi, since the days of Nephi, than in the days of Moroni, yea, even at this time, in the twenty and first year of the reign of the judges
24 And it came to pass that the twenty and second year of the reign of the judges also ended in peace; yea, and also the twenty and third year.
25 And it came to pass that in the commencement of the twenty and fourth year of the reign of the judges, there would also have been peace among the people of Nephi had it not been for a contention which took place among them concerning the land of Lehi, and the land of Morianton, which joined upon the borders of Lehi; both of which were on the borders by the seashore.
This is after a battle they had had with the Lamanites and it was finished and they had peace. The Nephites were all working together. And as it says in verse 23 that there were never a happier people.
But then in verse 25, Satan opens the door just a tiny bit, and brings contention in. And it goes on in the scriptures to talk about how this destroys one very powerful leader of the Nephites, because he lets Satan in.
I learned that even the most righteous can be taken out if we aren’t careful. We have to be constant, like Moroni, and be working to build, and rebuild, our spiritual protections, so that we are never unaware when Satan comes in and tempts us.
Because she had not been coming to Church for a little while she has been weak, but because of our powerful Ward Mission Leader, who I compare to an honourable Moroni, she was able to come back around. She wasn’t lost, but helped back onto the right course.
And just as it speaks of later when the 2000 stripling warriors come to the rescue, so did our ward in her time of need. The war chapters are a great example to how we should be always ready and prepared for whatever comes our way.
20 And they were all young men, and they were exceedingly valiant for courage, and also for strength and activity; but behold, this was not all—they were men who were true at all times in whatsoever thing they were entrusted.
21 Yea, they were men of truth and soberness, for they had been taught to keep the commandments of God and to walk uprightly before him.
What is the best thing I’ve learned from my companion? My goodness, where could I even begin…Sister L is amazing. She has been such a blessing in my life. I have learned so much from her. She has so many powerful Christ like attributes, that I strive to emulate as well.
One thing I have learned from her is to be quick to accept others and love others for who they are and the potential they have to become like our Heavenly Father. She also is so quick to forgive. I can’t even begin to count all the crazy things that have happened to us and to her, and she just gives her heart and forgives, she loves them and that’s what changes people. We teach together and she never forgets to mention how much we love them. It always is a good reminder to me of how much the Savior and our Heavenly Father love us. If she can love so deeply it can and must only be coming in and through our Savior Jesus Christ.
I know that God is aware of all of us. He is mindful of our situations and he desires to help us and bless us. I know that with His help miracles occur everywhere. I am so grateful to be serving the Lord full time and to be able to have come to know and understand His plan for my life, even if just a little bit more. I love this work. I love serving the Lord. I love being a missionary!
Love you all