Tuesday, August 4, 2015
Where to begin, where to begin... The work here is kinda crazy at get moment. Things flip flop all the time, and I am trying to keep up with it all! Haha
On Thursday Sister Clarke and I had the opportunity to go and interpret for a funeral. We interpreted for a woman named Jade, who's stepmother died. She was very grateful for our service and we are happy to be able to help. Her home teacher drove her to the funeral and he was quite possibly the happiest part of my week. He is a sweet 82 year old man. He flew planes when he was in the Air Force, and loved it. The funniest part, though, was when he randomly looked down at his watch, his face dropped and said, "I think today is my 60th wedding anniversary." Hahaha, oh that poor man. He was so funny.
Bonnie is doing amazing! :) We went over last Monday for FHE with them, and she had memorized all the components of the Gospel of Jesus Christ! She did soooo good! And when we taught about the Plan of Salvation, we had her copy her own outline of the Plan onto a piece of paper so she can remember, and boy was she in tune that day. Often, because of her autism, she has a hard time understanding everything, but she was very in tune with the spirit that day, so she was very teachable. We set her up on a baptismal date for August 23rd. I can't wait! What a wonderful spirit.
Peggie, Bonnie's mother, is doing awesome too. I just love her so much. She loves coming to church and feeling the spirit. She loves the teachings of the church, although she has concerns about Joseph Smith. We know that through our example, and through Bonnie's example, she will be converted in her own, and God's own, time.
We finally were able to contact Nancy again! Yay! Because of some family members, we were not allowed to see her, but because of some recent events, we have been allowed to is it with her. She is still not allowed to come to church, but still reads the Book of Mormon. She promised me that although she is going on vacation for a few weeks, she will continue reading and praying.
Ashley is doing well. She had quite an experience last week which influenced a strong feeling in her, and she was not quite sure what it was until we came over and we explained to her that that feeling she had was the Holy Ghost. I have never seen a lightbulb go off in such a magnificent way. The understanding that filled her eyes showed at least a small conversion. She finally understands how the Holy Ghost works and how it protects her in her life. She was glowing all through the rest of the lesson. She has still lost a lot of motivation for baptism and coming to church, but we are confident this experience of understanding will help her gain a testimony further.
Nadia, oh, Nadia. She's a hoot. I love her. We are now able to have more focused lessons with her now that it is not all together with the elders and Conrado. She is very interesting investigator. She asks very random, yet insightful questions. We taught her two lessons about the Holy Ghost now and she has been very interested how it applies to her life. At the end of the most recent lesson, she asked about temples, so this week we will be teaching her about temples. She wants to have her children with her forever. I know this lesson is going to be interesting for sure.
Other investigators are doing well, but these are just the investigators who are progressing right now. I have really come to know, especially working in this north area, that I can only do so much in aiding in the conversion of others. At times I become very frustrated with decisions made and desires that are lacking. Sometimes, I even wish to deny all agency and put them at the edge of the font and push. But it has been a real teaching experience for me about the plan Heavenly Father has for each of His children. This is His work, not ours. This is His timing, not ours. He knows His children the best, and He knows what nourishment in the gospel they need before entering into the important covenant of baptism with Him. As I continue to trust Him and have faith in His divine plan, I know I will have the wonderful opportunity to become a spectator and participator in His magnificent work.
A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to go with the branch to an ASL session in the temple. Words cannot describe how amazing it is to see the people you love most doing their Father's work in the temple. And the ASL session was amazing too. Heavenly Father truly does love all His children, no matter what conditions of life they are in. As I sat there marveling how even these people are able to do His work, Heavenly Father helped me feel even greater love for those I serve. I am everyday grateful for the opportunity to serve my mission amongst Heavenly Father's most beloved children.
I love you all, and pray every night for Heavenly Father to present you with opportunities to do your own missionary work. I pray that you will all take advantage of these opportunities presented to you, and be able to be a part of this work.
Sister Smyly Crawford
Sister Crawford and Veronica