Tuesday, October 28, 2014

[10/27/2014] Week 86: Blessings of Faith

Hey, y'all!

This week was awesome! Towards the beginning, things were a little slow-going, but by the end of the week, we saw some pretty cool miracles.

Last night, Elder Foster and I went to go tracting in one of the nicer complexes in Mill Creek and we started at building Y. The first door we knocked was answered by an older gentleman who was not excited to see us at all. He firmly expressed his disinterest, and firmly shut the door. We moved on to the next few doors, and a few moments later, his wife popped her head out darted a glare our way, and yelled at us saying, "What you're doing is illegal! There's no soliciting here! Get out of here now! I know who you are. You're Mormons. My great-grandfather was Wilford Woodruff! Now leave before I call the office!" So we were cordial as could be and walked away. From her apartment building. And went to another one in the same complex (what we do isn't illegal because we don't sell anything). So we tracted that building out and on the top floor, we had a miracle! We knocked on a door to find Brady and Haley, a newly wed couple. They told us they were staunch Christians just moved up from Alabama, heard a quick door approach on the message of the Restoration, kindly told us they weren't interested, shook our hands, and shut the door. We moved on. Oddly, we knocked the two doors on the other side of the floor before coming back to knock the second one across from Brady and Haley. When we came back to try their neighbors across from them, the door we'd already knocked flew open, and Brady and Haley walked out. We stumbled awkwardly because we thought they were just leaving and here they'd caught us about to "swoop in" on their neighbors. They stared at us, beaming, and invited us in. We weren't sure how to react. She reiterated: "Come on! Come inside." as she might have called puppies inside from the cold. Eventually, we wiped the bewilderment off our faces, shuffled inside, and perched ourselves on their felt sectional. They told us they had gotten to thinking and decided that it would make sense to invite us in to hear more about our faith and beliefs so that they could be well-informed. They felt it would be the Christlike thing to do to invite us in and hear what we have to say. What followed was an edifying discussion on the Restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ and how our Church differs from what they believe and practice. It was awesome! They are open to hearing more about the Book of Mormon from the Mill Creek family ward elders. I know that during the short space of time between when they first shut the door and when they opened it again, the Spirit worked with them and softened their hearts to help them understand that we truly are representatives of Jesus Christ. It was a miracle! This young family with their first baby on the way will be well-rooted in the restored gospel in no time!

If you remember my mention of a contact with Mark, a very wealthy, very humble man in Mukilteo, Elder Goodey and I went back to see him on Saturday while we were on exchange together. The timing was such that we caught him home -- usually he is out with his wife on Saturday afternoons, but she is out of town on business -- just before he was about to go work out. He was happy to see us again, and invited us right in. We taught him the Restoration and really utilized silence to let the Spirit do the talking. Elder Goodey did an incredible job bearing testimony, especially as he his recounted his experience learning that the Book of Mormon was true. When Elder Goodey described the feelings he had had and the profound joy he felt after praying over it for months, Mark remarked, "Yeah, I've never had anything like that..." And so we promised that he could. We testified that he could know as we know that this message is true if he would ask. And he committed to do so, understanding that his answer would come over time. When asked when he could meet again, he made sure to schedule a time that his wife, Kim, could join in the discussion.

Last week, Elder Foster and I tracted into a prepared lady named Sarah, who has been married for nearly 2 years and just had her first baby 6 months ago. This past week, she and her husband met with the Mill Creek elders and agreed to meet again this coming week.

So, as you can see, we've been really blessed to find people who are certainly prepared and seeking for the family ward missionaries in our zone. And that's ok, because I love to teach the gospel and see people make progress regardless of age or marital status!

In other news, we had a powerful lesson with Adam this week that was mainly about the Atonement of Jesus Christ. A lot of his concerns are about whether God really does care about him specifically and whether the Plan of Salvation really makes sense. I tell you, the Spirit was so powerful. I felt the Holy Ghost guiding me so clearly in what to say, when to be silent, and especially in the questions I asked. He remarked at feeling over and over through the lesson that he just needs to get back into studying his scriptures. Then, the Spirit prompted me to point out that what he was describing was revelation from God, thus proving that He loves and is reaching out to Adam even now. At this point, there was an outpouring of love and joy from the Spirit, and he knew what I was saying was true. He's making great progress!

We also found a new investigator, Sarah, yesterday who just moved out of her mom's house and into her first apartment. She was way open and invited us back next weekend. I believe we found Sarah -- as well as Brady and Haley -- not only because we had been obedient and diligent all week, but because we stuck to the plans we made to go tracting after church and followed through with faith.

That's so weird to see a picture of Wim! Glad to see he's still happy and healthy.

Elder Martin

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