It's been another busy, crazy, beautiful week in the California, Long Beach mission! I love this area and I love Sister Biberston! She is just so cute and I am so lucky to be able to be a part of her training! I am humbled to think of the trust Heavenly Father gives to missionaries but also trainers, I hope I don't mess this one up haha....
On Monday last week we just mostly said some goodbyes.... but I forgot my camera so no pics of that this week.... sorry! But Brother Stoughton got us InNout!! It was so yummy!
Tuesday I made the switch over, I said goodbye to Sister Sherksnas... BUT I'm just so stoked she will be with Sister Rhoton! I miss the Beach area but there is just so much to do here that there isn't time to think about it! I love how busy we are. When I got here on Tuesday we were splitting the ward with some Elders but half-way through the day we got a call from them saying that they were being transferred out... so now we are basically white-washing half of the area because I just got here and Sister Biberston has only been here for 6 weeks... But it has been fun! We are seeing lots of miracles and we know more are coming!
On Wednesday, we had District Meeting; there are only 3 companionships in the District... and there was literally twice that many in my last District, but they're all pretty cool. My District Leader, Elder Matthews, served in Atherton with Sister Kwon and I, so it's nice to see him. Later, we met with Edward and man, I just love this guy. He is just so sweet and sincere! He has learned everything but is reluctant to be baptized because he doesn't want to be alone in heaven and he doesn't think his family will join. We read 2 Nephi 31* with him (by the way probably my favourite chapter for missionary work, it gets stuff DONE) and discussed the path God wants him to be on. He agreed that there really is no other way than baptism! We are super stoked for him to be baptized on May 27th! I also met a couple other investigators; Monique, Christina, Javier and Claudia. Javier ad Claudia are a sweet married couple with kids. We were able to have a great spirit filled lesson with them, again using 2 Nephi 31. We also committed them to be baptized! They really want to attend church but Javier works every Sunday, BUT he is getting a new schedule soon so we are praying that he will have Sundays off! They are so sweet! When we first extended the baptismal invitation, they said they were already baptized in the Catholic Church when they were babies, but as soon as we talked about the authority and restoration, read a couple verses in Acts and Javier said, well then I guess we should get baptized again. It was so cool!
Thursday we met with an investigator named Jeremy. He has been struggling with being able to concentrate while reading the scriptures; since I have ample experience having a hard time with that particular issue, I was able to testify to him the importance of asking God for help; not just in life or death situations, but always. We cannot do anything on our own, and we aren't expected to. He loves us and wants to help us through anything and everything! I remember when I got to the MTC that was something I struggled with, just concentrating in those little classrooms with a room full of loud Elders. I was so frustrated with myself! I thought that since I was set apart to be a full-time missionary I should never have any problems! Why was I letting something so silly interfere with my work and study? How could I be so weak? With much love from Sister Rhoton and my Heavenly Father, I was able to overcome those challenges and feelings. Just like how there is no such thing as stupid questions, there is no such thing as stupid prayers! God wants to hear it all. Even if it seems silly like, help me concentrate, or help me eat healthy, he is there for it all.
Friday we had ward correlation, just us, one ward missionary and Brother Thompson, our ward mission leader, but it was good. We also had an investigator come to the weekly basketball night at the church! It was really great to see Christina interacting with other missionaries, recent converts and investigators!
Saturday, we saw Edward again and we talked about the Priesthood. He is still looking forward to his baptism and so are we! He's just the kinda guy that doesn't only read the scriptures but he ponders them! Both times we've met he has had an insight to share with us from his personal study, I love it! Reading the scriptures, especially the Book of Mormon is soooooo KEY in conversion, dare I say the most important aspect. I'm pretty sure that in PMG it says something like the Book of Mormon with the spirit is your most important tool in teaching the restored Gospel.... or something haha, but it's so TRUE!
Later got to meet with Christina. She has a lot of questions, we told her that they can be answered through diligent personal study in the Book of Mormon and she accepted that and is reading but I thought a good video for her to watch would be Tad R. Callister's devotional "the blueprint of Christ's Church." Oh man it is so good! She didn't say much about it, but we will ask more follow-up questions next time. Then in the evening, we saw Rueben and testified to him of the importance of the Book of Mormon. Basically, that is what this week has been; just using the Book of Mormon A LOT. I think people, and missionaries overlook it so much, and it's a shame because in my personal experience, I have seen A LOT more progress made when the Book of Mormon is involved.
We also found 2 investigators this week! Van and Maddie. We found Van as we were contacting a referral, they didn't live there apparently, but Van did! We taught him a little about where we came from why we are here and where we are going and how the restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ makes finding those answers possible. He seemed pretty interested, we lost him a little bit when he asked how this would affect his Catholic religion... but he said he would read the pamphlet in preparation for us to come back and teach him more about it! Maddie was in our former investigator book and we had planned to stop by her after church but then her friend from school asked if we could see his friend... and it was Maddie! It was fate (also God)! He told us about her and we went to see her and he will be coming to the lesson we have planned with her this week! It was really cool, God really is a God of miracles!
I also got to call home so I guess that was pretty okay... just kidding. I miss my family so much and it's weird to see them all grown up. I love them so much it hurts sometimes. I can't help thinking that I get to keep them forever, and that is why I keep fighting for people's salvation here in SoCal. I know how much it means to me that I get to keep my family forever, and if I can help make that happen for even one other person, I'll do it til they kick me out!
The church is true!!
*2 Nephi 31
*2 Nephi 31
|Sister Biberston and Sister Holt|
|Sisters with Christina|