Hey Family and Friends,
Happy belated Labor Day! And Happy Birthday Mom! How was it? So I'll actually start with Wednesday, mom's b-day. Boy that was a rough day. Hope it was better for you mom, but I was on exchanges with Elder Hanshew from my district. He and Elder Shepherd cover the Wilmington 1st ward which is the northeast most part of Delaware.. I remember writing a book in like 1st Grade called Jake's No Good, Very Bad, Terrible Day (or something like that). Wednesday kind of reminded me of that book in that it rained almost the entire day except for an hour or so and every appt fell through. So we walked every where just to walk is what it felt like. They got their car taken away so we walked EVERYWHERE. As we walked the Primary song "Pioneer Children Sang as the Walked" came to mind, but I found myself singing "we missionaries sing as we walk and knock and walk and knock...annnnnd walked." Most missionaries would agree I'd imagine. Now I feel incredibly blessed to have a car with A/C, wonderful members, and just to be in this area. So what did I learn from this? Patience. Elder Jeffrey R. Holland has a wonderful Mormon Message called "Good Things to Come" Please take the time to watch it. The trials that each of us go through are not for nothing. We just don't see the whole picture as God does. I see now that it takes patience and faith to trust in His will and blessings will come. Including blessings for walking and trying to find people to teach!
On Thursday we were driving home from downtown and a fight was brewing up and they decided the middle of 2nd street would be the best place to have it, apparently there are these two families that just do not get along. We also taught our online referral, Robert and he had questions about what makes us different. So we popped in the Restoration video. 20 minute clip, pretty good. But as Joseph walked into the grove of trees I got the overwhelming feeling and assurance that he indeed was a prophet of God chosen to restore the full truth and Priesthood to the earth. Through a humble young man that most important Priesthood power and authority to act in God's name was restored to the earth. We explained to him that that is the very reason we ask people to be rebaptized even if they have been baptized into another church. We hold that Priesthood in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He mauled it over for a minute and in wonderful faith, told us he would spend time praying and pondering and reading. Cause he wants to know for himself if this is true.
Friday was Zone Conference in Dover and President Winn, (just released as UT SLC Mission President in July) drove us down. He was delighted to go to a Zone Conference and just revels in talk about missionary work. He met President Anderson and they had a nice chat about the work. President Anderson is such a loving and humble man and his wife has got spunk and is just as loving. They are awesome people. We were taught about the need to invite people to be baptized. Similarly to teaching the gospel, if they are not invited to take action, then how could they possibly choose to do it or not? Sister Anderson commented on the need to show these people the Love we and our Heavenly Father have for them. Then in the car ride home, President Winn and I had a nice discussion about a Zone Conf he had recently in Salt Lake. He used Mark 10:21 with the story of the rich young man. The key part he said, was "Then Jesus beholding him, loved him and said unto him..." So Christ loves us first. And He shows that love in many ways, such as His Atonement. THEN He invites us to follow Him. So Love+the power of the Spirit = Solid invitation.
Yesterday (going out of order) a police officer named Rod took us to lunch at Subway. He was in uniform, so were we, so people gave us some funny looks. We felt safe though. I think I've mentioned him before. Really nice guy, gave us his number to call if we ever get in a tiff or anything. I asked how his day had been so far and he responded, " Oh not too bad, just a few stabbings and ya know, the usual mayhem." Oh ok, yeah totally normal...He told us there are 10 hard core real thugs in the city, the rest are just nutcases. And the majority of the homicides happen because people don't know how to shoot straight. Ya had to be there, but it was funny. He seems exhausted with the city work. So during the lunch, he actually brought up the church and asked for some pamphlets for his wife to read up on. "I'm easy pickin's, but my wife just wants to know more about that whole Joe Smith thing." We laughed, seeing that he would be willing to be baptized and handed him a Restoration pamphlet. Then he said, "My daughter's 8 and you guys start baptizing people at 8 right?" We grinned in excitement at the prospect of a golden investigator. So he and his family may come to the upcoming primary program and we'll see where it goes from there.
I got a pretty nasty head cold but got over it in a few days.Enock was sick most of last week too so we didn't teach him. But he still wants to progress. My scriptural thought for the week was sparked by Brother Hooper and a long talk he had with us a few days ago. In the Sacrament prayer and in 2 Nep 31, we learn that when we covenant with God, we are showing a willingness to follow Him and remember Him always. Brother Hooper had the thought to pray for God to keep His end of the bargain. If we do our part and really do our best, then God is required to keep His promise as well. "That they may ALWAYS have His Spirit to be with them." That struck us. Not just on Sunday, not just as missionaries or at efy. But always. You may not always have that "burning in your bosom" feeling, but you are entitled to His constant help. I love that. I am so imperfect, but through the Holy Ghost, we can all change.
Also there is a new Intro to Mormons video. Any non-member questions, answers it right there. 10 minute video. Watch it if you can. On Mormonnewsroom.org
Well, I love you all, Hope all is going well.