If you are ever out here in Tennessee, make sure you come out to Jamestown. It is such a small, but beautiful place. And miracles are happening here, that's for sure.
My week started pretty normal for the most part. I felt a weight on my shoulders the minute that a member of the bishopric called us and asked me to give a talk on Opposition and my companion to give a talk on Faith. And then the sister training Leaders called and asked us to role play teaching an investigator in front of the whole zone. Plus we had to prepare everything for the baptism Saturday. Oh golly, I felt grumpiness and stress trying to take over me. I'm sure I am not the only one right? Right?
Sometimes you just have those weeks where you are trying to push on and the world is pushing against you, but the Lord sure helped me conquer the week. And it WAS SUCH A GOOD ONE. Let me tell ya about it!
So, this week we worked with two part-member families. In both families the one who is a member has cancer, and the one is not a member does not. My companion and I really wanted to share a scripture message with them, or at least have a gospel discussion, but it just wasn't working. Both non-members were pretty closed off to our little scripture. Then I thought about my uncle Chad, who has cancer. I love him SO much, and this past week my family had a spiritual experience fasting for his health. I got to be part of it. They saw miracles, and felt so much peace and comfort from the Spirit. So I decided to share that story with them instead of our spiritual thought. It was crazy how much they related to it and the non-members were the ones responding. It really helped them. One said, "That is so neat to see how fasting and prayer helped your family." I'm grateful for my Uncle and Aunt's faith, that because of them, their story is lifting others up. These experiences really struck me.
Oh and kind of a fun experience. We went up to this town called Pall Mall, which is gorgeous, golly, and we went up to help a family on their chicken farm. I was so nervous, because they kill chickens and cut them up. But luckily they needed help picking persimmons. What are persimmons you ask? I didn't know either. They are just a tiny plum/lemon fruit. Anyways, all the sudden, this member who is the Southern version of Bobbi Frampton, took us to her land and, get this, we were totally OFF-ROADING IT!!! We were going up this huge hill with awesome fall colored trees everywhere, and the sun was out, and she was taking down weeds with her small, low-riding car, like nobody’s business. There is nothing like driving a car without a road to cheer a person up. Joyous moment!
Then came Sunday, with a million and one things to do. But it turned out to be, I would have to say, one of my all-time favorite days on the mission. My comp and I were silent in the morning, both hiding our stress to give our talks and set up for the baptism after church. We got to the church building, just pleading with the Lord to grant us with a portion of his Spirit for our talks. And everything worked out, as It always does. I shared scripture stories of how prophets, like Job, Nephi and Ammon reacted to opposition in such a positive way, because they understood 2 things,
1. WE WILL ALL FACE OPPOSITION
2. Jesus Christ is there to carry us the ENTIRE WAY
I learned so much by studying this topic. Anyone that knows me, knows I hate opposition. I hate feeling pain. I do everything in my power to stay balanced, and to avoid pain/heartache/ YOU NAME IT. But I realized that the times in my life where I have gone through the most pain, are also the times where I felt the most JOY because when I overcame them I was always so much closer to my Savior. Those are the best days of my life.
1 Peter 1:7-8
7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Jesus Christ:
8 Whom having not seen, ye love; in whom, though now ye seehim not, yet believing, ye rejoice with joy unspeakable and full of glory.
This is my new favorite scripture. AH, it hit my heart SO HARD. The trial of our faith is worth more than gold. It's what this life is about, and I want to rejoice and be filled with peace at the day Jesus Christ comes again. And though, seriously, opposition can really stink, we can turn it around, and use it to come closer to Christ.
Anyways, I am rambling, but after church, we filled up the font, and IT wasn't GREEN!! Like last time. And everyone who was at church stayed after to watch. Nick looked so happy, just like a kid at Halloween, or something. The Spirit was so strong, and in the talks they kept saying, "This is the beginning of your journey." And that is what baptism truly is. It's the first step in following our Savior Jesus Christ. He walked in the water, and when he came up, the smile on his face . . . PRICELESS. Everyone started laughing out of pure joy, it was a neat moment. Nick's testimony is so solid, he has been coming to church for a year, and wants to be married in the temple and start of a good family. Seriously, happy day!
Bishop cracks me up. He comes up to us after the baptism and he says, "Well, I guess this makes you sisters, "da bomb" Sisters." If you could only see my Bishop saying it. Love that man! Ah, and then we went and taught and taught and taught. We kept going and going and were so pumped we skipped our dinner. It felt good walking in the door that night knowing we gave all you could. Not holding anything back. It's so easy but our fears, and opposition, and our weaknesses hold us back. That's why we all need to cherish those small and GREAT moments where we overcome and rejoice in the Joy of this gospel.
I love ya’ll!
Go out there, and have a very BLESSED week!