Hello friends and family!
My mission is blessed enough to be able to enjoy the blessings of attending the temple every transfer (6 weeks) and this was our week to do it. We went with a bunch of other missionariesmorning to a very packed session. It was so wonderful to go there and enjoy the peace and clarity that comes from temple worship. We had stake conference this week as well, and one of the speakers was a former temple president. He, along with our stake president emphasized the importance of temple attendance in our efforts to "Come unto Christ" which was the theme of the conference.
My companion and I also got to go do baptisms with one of her recent converts earlymorning and guess who else was there? The BYU football team. Or at least 16 or so of their players that wanted to come. I talked with one of the assistant coaches I think? and he said that this was their new thing, and its their 3rd week doing it. So the players passed us on their way upstairs and Coach Mendenhall and his son were in the baptistery. The timing was just right that he was the one to do my baptisms andconfirmations. How cool is that?! What are the chances?
So this week, my companion and I have been working hard, and we've visited a lot of less actives, some part member families, and we've gotten a lot of potential investigators. Most of our potentials this week have come from this little section of two streets that we've visited that's right by our church building. We've talked to so many open people there (half of them are related in some way) and made a lot of new contacts. Hopefully we'll get some return visits this week and be able to teach those people more.
We're currently teaching two young women (20 and 19) who are married to less-active husbands. One of the them is in the process of getting time off work so she can be baptized, and is really our only progressing investigator currently (love her!) She has a great testimony and is trying to do what's right. The other has been meeting with missionaries for a while, and stopped meeting with us for a time because she felt we were pushing her towards baptism. She's hesitant and afraid of making such a big commitment, but she agreed to start meeting with us again; however our latest appointment fell through. My heart just goes out to her. She wants to do good things, and she wants the blessings the gospel offers, but it's hard to be consistent in the little significant things like prayer, scriptures, and church attendance without the full support of her husband. She's got a 6 month old and another on the way. Her name is Kelsey. Keep her in your prayers.
We've also visited some less actives. One family used to be super strong and now won't put forth the effort to come to church. They know it's what they should be doing, and they believe what we teach, they just don't come. They have a testimony, but they are not converted. Fear and apathy keep them from progressing, and it's the saddest thing. It's so hard to know how to help such people when they lack a desire to fix the problem, or to do things they know they ought to be doing. I'm not perfect myself, I've had similar problems as I've grown and progressed, and I've been lucky enough to have a wonderful family to help support and direct me through times when it was hard to be consistent in the little things I knew I should be doing. Maybe that's what would work with this family--additional love and support from the ward until they get to a place where they again have that desire to be better. The only problem is there's not that many other families in the ward that can help in that endeavor.
There's a lot of people who need a friend to reach out, and our resource of people to help is so small. The active members of the ward are few, and they have many of their own struggles. The Relief Society President's family is moving to Saudi Arabia for 3 years, and they seem to be everyone's friend. I feel like I'm trying to fix a car and the only tool I have is a pair of pliers.
So we're taking it a day at a time. My companion is very diligent in filling our time productively. I'm learning from her, and she inspires me to work harder. We're setting goals and talking to families. We're helping the families in the ward set goals for what they can do to increase and improve their missionary efforts. We're trying to bring those we come in contact with closer to Christ, and as the members become stronger they will be able to lift others as well. Our stake conference was inspiring and instructive. I hope that will help in our continued efforts as well. As always, thanks for your prayers.
I would love letters, my current address is:
13330 west road #316
Houston TX 77041
Lots of Love,