Friday, March 21, 2014

From March 17:

Wow this week has been so much better than last. We're working so well together now. I don't know what happened really, but when my companion started trying to make it work (probably when he saw my letter was mainly about getting through difficult companions), all of the frustrations faded and everything came into focus.
It's strange to be exactly one third of the way through my mission. It's gone by so fast and I really hope it slows down.

There's been so many miracles that have happened this last week.

On Thursday we asked Crystal if she wanted to delay her baptism, because we would need to meet four more times before Sunday if she was going to be baptized the next Sunday. She said she really didn't want to and was willing to meet that often. We were concerned because baptismal candidates need to repent fully and have a spiritual confirmation that it was true. We committed her to read and pray about the Book of Mormon, she felt that it was true, and then we commited to her to read President Monson's talk, "I will not fail thee, nor forsake thee." and she prayed to know if he was a Prophet, and when we returned she said she knew it was true.

We really felt like the 22nd was the day for Crystal. Well it turns out that Kevin K. and his family, our other investigator that's considering baptism, is going to have dinner with the Fry's (who we live with) and the Steele's, two family friends. That dinner will take place the day after Crystal's baptism, and so all of the family's doubts about whether or not Kevin understands what he's doing and knows from God that this is what he wants him to do will be erased, Kevin going to a baptism literally the day before. He'll know without a doubt then what it is he needs to do.

So last preparation day we both needed hair cuts and my companion needed to ship a package, he forgot his wallet, and so I payed for him. Somehow in the conversation no agreement was made and no expectations for having to pay it back were made. That left me with $10 for the next three weeks, and I never asked him for the $20 because I knew it wouldn't be until next month probably. Anyways I didn't know that until last night, and so we talked about it calmly even, and I was trying to distance myself from it, and I heard the voice, "drop it". I tried, realizing that under different circumstances I would have freely given it to him anyways. Literally 5 minutes later some ward members came in with a box of food and supplies. It was a testimony to me that the Lord is mindful of us and our situations. Grandpa Nebeker's advice to focus on what's important and not on the little frustrations or let them magnify in your mind is so true.
I read through Abinadi's ministry to the people of King Noah. I was just so amazed at the calmness he exhibited while he completed his assignment among a people that sought to kill him, teaching them lovingly or at least without indignation or frustration what the consequences would be if they did slay him. 

I've been focusing a lot recently on overcoming weakness, Ether 12:27 teaches us,
And if men come unto me will show unto them their weaknessgive unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will make weak things become strong unto them.
I had the opportunity to prepare for Gospel Essentials before Church. I felt impressed to not do the lesson about Prophets in the book, but rather on Elder Scott's conference talk, "Personal Strength through the Atonement of Jesus Christ" 

That talk is so true, as I've repented of sins and the effects of weaknesses, I've had a greater portion of the Spirit in my life. For example, while preparing for the class, I had the impression that I was prepared enough to teach it. Then the whole class time I taught by the Spirit, probably more so than with investigators. It was an incredible experience. Seemingly small fears and silent pleas to heaven were answered, we thought that we might not have enough people there, but I felt like it would be enough, we had 5 people besides Crystal.

I'm not sure exactly why I felt so much of the Spirit yesterday at Church compared to other Sundays, but we know that, "There is a law, irrevocably decreed in heaven before the foundations of this world, upon which all blessings are predicated—And when we obtain any blessing from God, it is by obedience to that law upon which it is predicated." (D&C 130:20-21)
We taught the lesson that God wanted us to teach. If we took the wrong path he wouldn't have inspired us on how to best teach the wrong lesson.
Our lives, our companionship, and the work was in harmony. We were doing exactly what God wanted us to be doing, and we were blessed to know what to do and what to say. There's always some weakness or some counsel in our patriarchal blessing or some conference talk that we strive today to follow, and by doing so we'll be ready for the times to come.

"For behold, it is as easy to give heed to the word of Christ, which will point to you straight course to eternal bliss, as it was for our fathers to give heed to this compass, which would point unto them straight course to the promised land." Alma 37:44
Yesterday I reoriented myself to the course that Heavenly Father has given me and I was blessed greatly for it. There truly is no end to God's love or long suffering towards us, and I know that as we live today the Gospel of Jesus Christ as best we can that God will bless us. I know that God lives, that Jesus is the Christ and that He restored the fullness of His gospel to the earth through a living Prophet. Carry on!
Elder Szendre

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