Monday, September 15, 2014

Another Great week to be in the great state of Texas!

Things have calmed down a lot more this week. We still were all around, but it was good. We had some great things happen this last week.

   Tuesday we had our new leadership training. And I love how the meetings have changed from what they use to be. It seems that the way we use to do the meetings was more administrative. It was us up there and talking about what the new leaders responsibilities would be. This is good, but it certainly is not the most effective. So while talking with President we discussed what we can do to be more effective and help train these new leaders on how to go back and bless their zone. As we counseled together we decided to make it more meaningful by have the key indicator reports ready for the meetings and helping these missionaries to see what their zones or districts need help with. After seeing the data, they can go back and prayerfully discuss with the other zone leaders and sister training leaders and district leaders to make the work be more effective. It helps to add a great sense of purpose to what they are doing. So with this little change we still discussed what their responsibilities were, but we gave them the opportunity to receive revelation for their areas of stewardship.

 We also had the opportunity to meet with one of our new investigators named Brian. We were able to teach him the restoration.  And overall I would say that it went well. There was a little more of a language barrier, but I feel that he does have a sincere desire to learn. So we were able to teach him and we committed him to begin reading the Book of Mormon. He accepted to do that, and then we now just have to follow up with him this next week. 

This last week also consisted of some different exchanges. I was able to go up and work with the Elders in the singles ward in College Station. And this was so different for me, but it was so much fun. Now I have been serving in a YSA Ward for just 3 months now so I am still working on how to work better with YSA 's. 

But being up on Texas A&M's campus and proselyting was so much fun! It is so much different. We were biking through campus, and you literally just weave through all the students as you go from appointment to appointment. We also had about 2 hours set apart to just proselyte on campus! So a lot of the students go to churches in the area so many of them are open to talking about Jesus Christ openly and talking about the different things that they believe in. 

Now the trick is how to stop them as they are on there way to there classes. We had a stack of pass along cards that had a picture of Jesus Christ on it, and we would just start handing them out to people as they would go by. Many of them would stop and accept the picture and then we were able to talk with them. It was so cool to be up there and teach people. 

I was able to talk with this girl. We had a discussion for about 30 mins. It was cool we just started talking about what church she attended and what some of their beliefs are. After talking she started asked about what our  beliefs are on baptism, the sacrament, and other principles of doctrine.  

I was able to talk about the Book of Mormon, and bear my testimony of it and how it has blessed my life. I testified that the Book of Mormon strengthens my testimony of the Bible and brings me closer to Jesus Christ and his teachings. I know she felt the spirit. I definitely felt it as I testified of why the Book of Mormon is so important. So I was able to teach a lesson to her, and we got her contact info, and the other missionaries in College Station will start teaching her. 

So it was just a new fun way to proselyte. And I have never seen so many YSA's in one place before so that was cool. And of course while I was up there I had to snag a couple sweet pics of the campus. 

Other than that this week we also did some exchanges down in Melbourne area. It was quite the change. I went from one of the farthest places north in the mission, to the very south point. But it was still a good exchange. We had great opportunities to talk with people. 

We met this guy named Earl. He was very interesting and such a great guy. We were planning on going in and teaching him the restoration. But we tried to go in and teach and we only got a part of the way through the lesson. He has a very interesting religious standpoint. He takes his beliefs from a couple different religions. When we were teaching him he really truly knew a lot. He has never read from the Doctrine and Covenants, but he was quoting phrases that are found with in it. So we had a great experience teaching him. But this week we had some great exchanges.

And to finish the week we had a wonderful Sunday. We were able to watch the CES devotional with one of our investigators. The devotional was great and talked a lot about laying down our lives or submitting our will to the Lord.  And the spirit was very strong! So overall it was a really great week! 

I know this is a short email, but we had some different meetings with President today so we didn't have quite as much time. But things are going well! I would just again invite you to please pray for missionary opportunities. They don't always have to be in your area you find them either. Through social media you will have friends who may not be member. Just think to your self the next natural step you can taking in bring them closer to feeling Gods love. You don't have to invite them to meet with the missionaries right off the bat. But maybe share a Mormon message with them on Facebook or message them an article or link to the church website. 

I promise you as you do this you will see  that they will be receptive and see your love for the gospel. And that will lead them and soften hearts and help them be receptive to the message of the restored gospel. I know it will bless you and it will bless them. We have a message that brings salvation to the Lords children. It helps bring light and understanding on how to return and live with God someday. We can't afford to keep this message to ourselves. If we truly are grateful for this gospel, it will show through your efforts to share it with others and establish and strengthen the church where you live. I know that to be true and I testify of that! 

 I hope y'all have a great week! 

Elder Joshua V. Christensen

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