This has been a really good week. We had some really great miracles happen. We also had some fun with car troubles. So Monday night we got a call from our vehicle coordinator telling us that we need to take our car up to the Ford dealership to get some repairs on the transmission. ( It has been miss shifting really bad, probably for about a month and a half.) So we did that and we dropped off the car and got a ride from some of the Elders who work in the office and they drove us up to the mission office where we got a new car to use. It was a 2014 Chevy Cruze which was a fun little car to drive. But we used it for two days and got our car back.
Thankfully it actually wasn't the transmission, it was actually the software that was loaded into the cars computer that went bad. So they changed it and now out car runs so much better. That is what mainly happened on Monday and Tuesday. We also went around to members of our ward to try and get to know them better and help them in any way we could.
Well Weds was a day of Miracles, the first being that is actually when we got our car back and it wasn't to much trouble with it. But Weds I was scheduled to give a baptismal interview to an investigator named Loveline from one of the other wards. And so we got there at 5:00pm and we were expecting her to be there at the same time as us. But she didn't end up showing up till about 6:00 pm. But the whole time I was super nervous about giving the baptismal interview. 1. being that I have never given one before and didn't receive any training on how to do it. 2. being that Loveline is a super nice Nigerian lady with a really thick accent. I was told by my companion and by the other Elders that it was really hard to communicate with her and understand her. I was praying so hard that it would all go well.
Well at 6:00 when she got there, I introduce myself to her and lead her to the room we would do the interview in. And we went in the room and started off with a prayer. I said it and asked for the spirit to be there and some other things that I can't remember. At first I just had to listen really careful to her, but the spirit was absolutely there. The gift of Tongues must have kicked in or something. I was able to communicate with her and could understand her completely. It was truly a miracle!
The spirit so strong and you could just see the desire she had to make that promise with our Heavenly Father. She wanted to be take upon herself the name of Christ. I can't even tell you everything that was said, but the conversation was led by the Spirit. I know that because of the Help of my Father in Heaven I was able to understand her, and she was able to understand me. Our Heavenly Father does listen to our prayers, we just need to remember to have faith and know that he will provide away for us.
So right after the interview we drove over to the house of one of our members. They invited there friend from work to come and listen to the missionaries. We learned that there friend was afraid of dying, and didn't know what would happen after death. So we got to teach the Plan of Salvation! It was so good! We were teaching her and she had a lot of great questions about it, and the best part was when she learned about the great gift we receive where we will all be resurrected. This made her so happy, and at this point we were able to bare testimony to her about the truthfulness of this principle.
And it was cool because after we said this she looked at us and said I know that you believe this but how can I learn this for myself? So it was the perfect intro to The Book of Mormon. She said that she would start reading it, and she said she wanted to see how it compares with the Bible. But she has started to read it. I can't tell you everything that was said but it was defiantly driven by the Spirit.
I have said that a couple times already this email but it is so true we had this happen to us so many times this week as we tried to meet with investigators and members. We come out of an appointment and can't even remember how we answered the questions. The Spirit is the true teacher in missionary work. As missionaries we prepare and do the things necessary to have the Spirit, but in the end the Spirit communicates through us, and it can tell us the things that we need to say to be able to help others out.
Thursday we had a great meeting with the Bishop where we talked about what was going on in the ward. But after we thought we should go check on an investigator that lived by. And we knocked on the door and no one came. So we were walking to the car and Eva walked out and we were actually able to meet with her that day. And her biggest concern about being a member is what her family would think. She come from a Roman Catholic background, and so she doesn't want to disappoint her family. But just asking her how she was doing she began to start crying, and me and my companion didn't understand, but we just let the Spirit speak through us again. I don't know what was said but the lesson was great!
This week was so full of miracles! I just love seeing the tender mercies of the Lord. He does care about all of his children and wants them to be able to return and live with him. I know that this is true! I have seen it out here as I have come to know the people here in this area. I care so much about them and there are amazing people here in this area!
Friday we had a good district meeting, but at first I was worried that I taught terribly, I was worried I didn't help the district out in ways we can use The Book of Mormon to help our investigators. But I have a firm testimony that the topic is presented each week in district meeting is inspired by the Mission President. After district meeting I heard of different companionships using what they learned that day in their missionary work. And we had an experience that night where we were able to give Ashlie (The leasing agent for our apartment complex) a copy of the Book of Mormon. The things president asks us to teach on is really to be able to help us in all of our missionary work!
Saturday we met with different members and went to Lovelines baptism, and that was it for that day. The spirit at the baptism was so great! You could tell how excited Loveline was to be able to be baptized and feel clean from any feelings of guilt and sin. Her countenance has changed so much! This gospel can change lives and can bring so much happiness to others. It is a gospel of change and joy.
Sunday we had our normal meetings, but for the 3rd hour we talked about a new program the church has come out with for family search. They have a booklet called my family, and it is so great! I would invite all you that are reading this to look it up and get a copy. It is such a great way to be able to look at your family history and get started and show it with others. It helps deepen that connection you have with your ancestors. Please look into it.
But to finish off my week we had a devotional at the bishops house. And I was asked when we got there to share my thought on goal setting and how we set goals here in the mission field. I loved being able to stand in front of all these youth that I have been able to get to know and share my testimony to them. I talked to them about how it is important to set goals that are important to you and to check back in with them and measure them.
There is a quote in Preach my gospel that says, " When performance is measured, performance improves. When performance is measured and reported, the rate of improvement accelerates." That is so true. When we report back on our goals we can see how we have improved and see how we can improve. But the important thing about goal setting is having your Heavenly Father involved. With the Lord nothing is impossible, and he can help you to be able to accomplish any goal you have in your life. I know that this is true. I know that this church is true, and that Jesus is the Christ, I know that Heavenly Father hears and answers our prayers! He cares and wants to help us we just need to go to Him! I say that in the name of Jesus Christ Amen.
Well I hope y'all have a great week!
Elder Joshua V. Christensen
Elder Christensen sent the following pictures of P-day activites: