GUTEN TAG! wie geht es dir??
( in honor of my new ties to germany from sister hess!)
This week was a test of faith, but one that DID NOT DISAPPOINT! We struggled all week to find appointments to teach people, and to be busy but the one thing we held on to was our faith. Faith the miracles were coming. WE are told that exact obedience brings miracles? Well we are not perfect, but we are perfect in our desires and effort to do HIS will. All week we had almost nothing to do. The meetings with other missionaries and interviews just kept pushing us through the week. The spirit was just saying, keep going, there is a miracle on its way. And I knew it would be the baptism.
I will share an experience about one night tho. On Friday night we usually play basketball at the church but currently the church is under some construction. So we spent time with Brother Chapman, ( one of the members who I am extremely clsoe with) getting greceries and things we needed. We came home and ate lunch. I was feeling rather discouraged feeling like we had not done much to help out the work in our area. But I felt we still could... So Elder Shupe and I knelt down together, ask for forgiveness and jsut as joseph did. We asked in faith. Pleading to Him our desire to serve, but expressing our lack of wisdom and knowledge of how or where to go... so we prayed and stood up and walked out the door (not knowing beforehand the thigns that we should do ;) but we just walked, and I just was waiting... so afraid to open my mouth but willing! and in my mind over and over I felt the spirit saying SOMEONE will listen to you, someone out here tonight will listen...
well we walked a good mile and sat down it was almost nine o clock by then and kinda looked at each other and said... well? guess we will go home... holding out in my heart a prayer. KNOWING A MIRACLE COULD STILL HAPPEN! and would :) I was just trying so hard to listen to the promptings... I was playing in my mind stories I have heard of missionary miracles late at night hoping we could have one... well right before we turned into our complex we noticed a man waiting at the bus stop... ha :) I knew that was him... told elder Shupe, hey lets go talk to that guy:) so we did... said hello tried to start up friendly conversation and didnt go so well... so I just offered my hand and told him if we could do anythign for him to let us know. he thought we were from a business but i told him no! Missionaries! And he was curious and I explained to him our beliefs.. the most imcredible part was the spirit gave me the words, that the "Fullness of Christ's gospel" was restored to the earth... he repeated out those words and said alright... ill call you guys. and then the bus came... I gave him a book of mormon and he got on the bus and left.
Nothing will probably come from it, but it doesn't matter... Elder Shupe and I were beaming... a day that potential was nothing, changed into one where we listened to the spirit and acted in faith... and now we were successful. The gospel was sounded in that mans ear.
This is what I testify of... when we desire to do the will of the Lord, and live lives worthy of his spirit all we must do is act on the faith we have. There is joy and peace and CONFIDENCE that comes with that!
The baptism was one of the most incredible experiences ever... sis Hess and Lukas and Maria! A woman elder Langi and I found at a gas station (who the sister started to teach) were all baptized in the ocean! The member who referred and fellowshipped sis hess spoke and I felt the pericing joy that filled her soul know SHE was an instrument! And her husband the man who invited Ian to come play basketball stood by me as we watched Bro hess baptize his wife. The spirit that filled me was indescribable and on sunday when I had the HONOR to confirm them members, overcome me... how could a soul, so rebelious and proud as mine... be blessed to help these people, and become such great friends. ONLY in the name of christ... "there is no other way or means whereby man can saved only in and through Christ."
Elder Langi and I and along with all the hess boys justine and aiden (the twins) and lukas all sang I am a child of God and that touched my heart.
After we were done confirming the newest members of the ward... i jsut sat back in my chair... looked around at these faithful new members... making covenants and this ward with familes and jobs and things they need to do who are working so hard to hasten this work, the other missionaries who like me miss their families and friends so much... and I just cried... I was just overcome with the spirit... I KNOW without a doubt, with a great certainty the the Savior Jesus Christ lives. And He leads this work... I know that is true. I give my witness... and ask the Angels above to record it, (d and c 62:3) that I know and will give my life to Him who created us. I know he is there, i know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the Lords kingdom on the earth, that the book of Mormon was given to us to bring us closer to our Savior and to know for ourselves withersover we should go. It is all through Christ. I love this work, I love this place, I love this people and will go where he wants me to go, I will do what he wants me to do, I will be who he wants me to be. I am afraid at times, I lack knowledge, I am young, but I know He will help. To everyone I say (d and c 128) Shall we not go on with so great a cause? Go Forward, not Backward. COURAGE,BRETHREN! and on, on to the victory!
Be Not Afraid; Only Believe