Tuesday, July 7, 2015

My Trainee has been Born!

Hello hello hello! GUESS WHAT. My baby is here! She is so cute!!! She arrived yesterday morning! I am so excited to have this opportunity to train here. I can already tell she is going to be amazing and be the change this branch needs.  (Mom here: She has a new Trainee, Sister Clarke....that's what she is talking about.  Silly girl)

  Sister Clarke with the Mission President and Wife.

I want to take a moment and brag on my investigators.

Ashley. What a girl. We met up with her last week, and instead of chatting for a half hour, she said, "How are you two?.... Good, ok. I have some questions about what you believe in." Hahaha! Yes! She just wanted to know about the gospel! A few months ago, she didn't want to talk about Christ at all! So we explained to her that we have five lessons we teach people and asked her if she wanted to take these lessons. She readily agreed. We asked if she wanted to start then, and she replied, "Yeah!" So we taught her the lesson about the Restoration. She had no concerns, no questions. When we brought up the Book of Mormon, she said, "Oh yeah! I have that. I'll start reading it." So she committed herself to reading the Book of Mormon. And then she committed herself to pray about it. When we were walki back to her house, she turns to us and said, "I want to be baptized. And I want to be baptized in your church. I need to think about it more, but I am pretty sure. It feels right."

She texted us this week and said,
"Hey!!! I want to come to church this Sunday! Please?"
Us, "Of course! How is everything going?.... Have you been reading the Book of Mormon?"
Ashley, "Well, that's why I want to go to church, so I can get another one!"
We accept.  And then she came to church on Sunday and was so interested in the lessons. She is still deciding to be baptized, but she feels it is right. Yay! So we will keep teaching her. I love watching the spirit work on her. You can just see the brain working and her figuring out how it all fits together and the truth of it all. It is amazing to watch. It really builds my testimony that we as missionaries are only the deliverers of the truth. The spirit is the teacher of the truth.

And now I will brag on Keesha. Oh my goodness. Our lesson with her last week was one of the best lessons I have ever been involved in, only to be topped by this week's lesson with her. She, like Ashley, is so much fun to watch as the spirit works. She is very much like me in that she depends on what makes sense and what is logical, rather on her feelings. So as we taught her the first lesson (the Restoration), she completely understood everything. It was awesome because she is so educated. This way, we are able to explain things more to her. We went into the background of what was happening in Jerusalem at the time of Lehi and everything! I promise, it really was helpful. At the end of the lesson, we asked if she would pray about the things we taught her, and when she agreed and we promised her the Holy Ghost would answer her prayers. She then got a sad look on her face and said, "But I can't have the Holy Ghost because I haven't yet been baptized..." She had learned at church that week about receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost after baptism, so she didn't think the Holy Ghost could answer her because she hadn't yet received the gift of the Holy Ghost. So we had to teach her the difference of feeling the Holy Ghost and having the gift of the Holy Ghost. She is so educated! So awesome! And in the closing prayer, she went ahead and asked about the truth of the things we taught her. She is so awesome! And I thought that was going to be the best lesson ever.

The second lesson we had with Keesha was even better. We taught her about the Plan of Salvation. This time around, Keesha was a little different. She was a lot more reverent (she is always reverent, but she had more of a peace around her). We taught the entire lesson through with no questions from her, and when we got to the end we asked, "Keesha, we keep asking if you have any questions, but you say you don't. Are you sure?" She responded by saying, "You know, I should have questions, but I don't." She was very quiet and seemed to be pondering something very deeply in her mind. We looked at her and asked, "How are you feeling right now?" She looked up at us, and I have never, never seen someone with more of a glow about them. She smiled from ear to ear and said, "I just feel so good. I feel happy. I have never felt his way before. You should have seen me before; I would be sad, depressed, etc. But now, I am happy. If I don't go to church, if I don't pray, if I don't read the scriptures, I have a bad day, I don't feel good, and I am sad. I just really love my Heavenly Father." Her closing prayer was almost completely a prayer of gratitude. She absolutely glowed with the spirit and the majority of her prayer was telling her Heavenly Father how much she loved Him.

I love teaching people who have such a personal desire to know the will of God, to know the truth. It is so different from most of my time in the first six months of my mission where most of what I did was maintenance work, trying to keep less actives going on the basics (church, prayer, and scriptures) but having them be stubborn and needy. Now, as long as I have faith, I know that the Lord will put people who have been prepared in my path, that I may be an effective tool in His hands.

I love being a missionary. I love being a servant of the Lord. I love being a part of His work and being the means by which others can come to know Him. I am truly humbled by this opportunity, and it brings me to my knees everyday in gratitude for the Lord trusting me enough with His beloved children.

I love you all!

Sister Crawford _\,,/

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