Thanks for all of the letters this week! Wow, i'm impressed! It was so good to hear from ya'll! Letters definitely make my whole day. You guys are great, i really appreciate all of the support i have from my family and friends! I couldnt do it without ya'll! 6 months down... guess what that means? I will see you all in exactly a year from today. Freaks me out! It is going by wayyy too fast!! Haha. I got lots of work to do in just a year!
Anyway, we had a great week this week! A ton has happened with Tom and Chris! Gah, they are just amazing. We met with them a lot this week and each time i could see and feel them becoming more and more converted. So i cant remember what i told ya'll about Chris but basically in all the lessons she just sits back and plays with the baby and doesnt really participate much in gospel discussions and when she does she tries to speak for tom or she is trying to convince tom and clear things up for him and almost always she has a funny random comment to add in to whatever we are talking about. Haha she is really funny. She just speaks whatever is on her mind which is kinda hard to keep the conversation on one course haha but she is the best. Anyway, we were a little concerned about her cuz she wasnt reading or participating and stuff and come to find out that when she met with missionaries before in about 2008 she was going to get baptized and really wanted to but Tom was holding her back cuz he didn't feel good about it. So then it all kinda clicked for us in why she just sits back and tries to help tom out cuz she already knows it is true. She asked us a really interesting question this week she said "What if one of us is moving faster than the other one" so we asked her what she meant by that and she told us that she has already done her studying and praying on the church years ago and that she has been wanting to join for a really long time but doesnt want to without tom. It totally caught us off guard. I cant even explain to you how hard it was for me to not just smile. I just couldnt hold it back. I have never felt so much joy in my life EVER. It was the bigget comfort to me and assurance that they were going to make it. It was so good to hear and see and just know that she knows it is true. She always has. We had no idea that when she met with missionaries before that she had gotten that far. So we all knelt down and prayed and we had Chris pray to know if the church was true. The minute she started praying she just started crying. She could barely get through the prayer. I have never seen her like that and i have never felt the spirit so powerfully before. It just took over her and i know she got her answer once again. We met with them so much this week that all the lessons just blended together so sorry if this is all over the place but Tom is really coming along too. Both Tom and Chris got a priesthood blessing last week to help them stop smoking. After they got the blessings they kept telling us how much happier they were and how much easier it was for them not to smoke! After one of our lessons with them tom told us "We are coming over to your side, it is just a matter of when" and he kept saying "consider us your first converts, we are going to make it" AHHHHHHH. I died. Seriously i never thought in my life that one cute little family could bring me so much joy. I cant even imagine how happy that makes heavenly father. It has been incredible to watch them change sooo much over these past couple months. They have come so far i cant believe it and although it is taking them a little while to get there, i know they will eventually! This last week we just stopped by to see them and werent really planning on having a lesson but we ended up having one and we didnt have anything planned at all and the spirit just prompted us to talk about baptisms for the dead. Usually you dont teach that before baptism but it was the most overwhelming feeling to talk to them about it especially with all of the deaths they have had to deal with in the past. They were blown away. We werent exactly sure why we were prompted to teach them that but it was all cleared up on why when we got a call from them saturday afternoon telling us that tom's mom had passed away. Let me tell ya, they cant catch a break from anything lately and satan is really working on them! Every saturday satan throws something at them to prevent them from coming to church its ridiculous but I know that this all happened for a reason and the knowledge of the gospel and the testimony that they have will get them through it. Especially the knowledge they have of the after life and especially baptisms for the dead. I know and feel comforted that this experience will draw them closer to the gospel and i know they will make it in the Lords time! Im just so grateful to be here in this area and to have met them! I know they are a reason why i am here. I cant even imagine what it would be like to never meet them! They are so amazing and i have loved the experiences i have had with them and have loved seeing them become converted.
Well other than tom and chris we have a million other investigators that either dropped off the face of the earth, are too busy, or just arent progressing. As it says in the scriptures how we must find and teach the elect... well that is what we will be focusing on is the elect! We are starting off fresh and dropping all those that never show up for appointments or are wasting our time. Its hard cuz we love them but we are on a search to find those that are ready and prepared. We set up in the ward a "40 days of fasting" we have asked 40 different people or families to fast just one day for missionary experiences and at the end of the 40 days to have a baptism. I'm so excited to see the miracles that will come from the missionaries and the ward being equally yoked together. We cant do this work without the members and i know as we become unified in this together that we will truly be blessed with miracles!
This gospel is so important! We should all be soo grateful that we have the knowledge that we do! Yes we are all sooo different from the world but that isnt anything to be ashamed of! Rejoice in it! Rejoice in this gospel. Think about some ways that you feel motivated for anything and especially to live this gospel. There are so many different things like family and friends and even praise that motivate us but our main source of motivation should be in jesus christ! He will give us anything and everything that we need to not just live this gospel but to share it. as we put our faith and trust in him he will truly bless us with miracles in our lives to get through whatever we are going through. Draw your motivation from him. always remember him and if we do that we can overcome and get through anything... even anxieties and fears to share the gospel to those around us! This message needs to be shared to everyone. I look around the area im serving in and see all these different living situations people are in or just other hard things they are going through and the only thing that can truly help them through that is the gospel! I know it. It is such a comfort to have the knowledge that we do. We dont want to get to the next life and have our friends come walking up to us saying "you knew the whole time and you didnt tell me, why?" I know i for sure dont want any of those i love and are close to me and even people i pass on the street coming up to me and saying that to me. This knowledge we have needs to be shared and as long as we have the spirit we dont need anything else... regardless of our talents and abilities the spirit is key. I love you all so much and i'm so blessed to have the family and friends that i do! Im grateful to be here in virginia. Its going by way too fast! I have so much work to do! Love you all! XOXO