Monday, February 26, 2018

"Bear with patience thine afflictions, and I will give unto you success." (November 6, 2017)

This has been quite the week. 

First off, when I first got my call to Minnesota, everyone told me how cold it was gonna be, and I thought it was just a stereotype. But no friends, it's good. It's so cold. And it's not even winter yet. We're looking forward to bundling up and sharing the gospel the next few months! 

We had an amazing mission conference week, with Elder Michael T. Ringwood from the seventy. It was an incredible day of spiritual enlightenment. We were reading a lot in the scriptures, and talking about missionary work, and about how we accept what the Lord says he "shall command us" before we receive the commandment, and promising to be obedient for the sake of being obedient. Then later in the day we were talking about the Brother of Jared, and how missionaries plan, and he tied it all back in to that idea of obeying what the Lord shall command us to do this wonderful package of spiritual goodness and inspiration with a great big bow on top. I wish you all could have been there, because it was amazing. 

We had an amazing experience with George this week. We had a lesson scheduled with him, and when we got there the power was out. Our zone leaders were there with us too, and he told us he hasdn't read in the Book of Mormon at all this past week, and about all the distractions he has been feeling. We talked about how the Book of Mormon gives us the answer to how to overcome temptation and recognize the distractions that the devil tries to throw at us. He went to grab his Book of Mormon, and sat down with us again, and I kid you not, no sooner had he opened the Book of Mormon to start reading the power and the lights came on. If that is not a Book of light, I don't know what it is. There was also a powerful moment in the lesson when he told us, holding the Book of Mormon in his hands "I know it's true, I know this is the word of God. The way I feel when I read it, I can't deny that." All we can do is read it, and feel it, and know for ourselves that this is the truth. Those moments make everything worth it. All the praying, and planning, and teaching, and rejection facing, to hear someone say "I read it, and I know it's true." It's truly incredible. 

We're really focusing on sharing the Book of Mormon right now, we have specific goals as a zone and as companionships to better use the Book of Mormon in our teaching this month, and it has been so cool, and made tracting and contacting and finding new investigators so much more exciting because of this amazing message that we bring, and to try to share the Book of Mormon with everyone. 

One of the new people we met this week, Cristian, is a referral from her sister in Mexico, who is a member. Have you all seen the new referral app on LDS tools, because it is amazing. Go refer all your friends to the missionaries! I feel like we have gained a lot of insight this week about why people are so nervous about giving referrals and don't want to hurt friendships or risk offending anyone. If the least you can do is tell the missionaries where your friends live, that's a  start. Even if you don't want them to use you name, we have a fraction more of a chance of sharing a message, because they know someone, to have a friend who is LDS, because then when we knock on someone's door, they already have even the slightest connection to the church to begin with which can make a shockingly large difference. Even better if you let the missionaries use your name, or introduce your friends to the missionaries in person, but we all need to start somewhere and every little effort is what makes the difference. 

Quote of the week
Me: "Yeah, the Astros won the world series"
Sister Grover: "Honestly, don't know anything about football" 😂😂

I have been thinking a lot about two groups of people this week, the sons of Lehi, and the sons of Mosiah. With the former, Laman and Lemuel especially, because I just can't figure them out. Receiving sign after sign, witness after witness, and miracle after miracle that bring them to remembrance of the Lord, then 3 verses later they forget all over again. It is so frustrating. How can they not look back to just moments ago when they REMEMBERED. And I know this is a lot how the Lord feels about us sometimes, because it is so frightenly easy to forget. I had a moment like this this past week. We had been trying to see so many people, and diligently follow our plans and the spirit, and nothing was happening, and I was getting so frustrated, and angry that we were not being guided and felt completely and utterly forsaken. Reflecting on this moment, a scripture came to mind, which is where the sons of Mosiah come in. "27 Now when our hearts were depressed, and we were about to turn back, behold, the Lord comforted us, and said: Go amongst thy brethren, the Lamanites, and bear with patience thine afflictions, and I will give unto you success." Those moments, of completely and utter despair, as we bear them, are always followed by success. Always. Maybe not success as we may see it, or as the world may see it, but as we bear those trials and bear those moments, the Lord has promised that he will deliver us as he needs to. Thinking on the ministry and work of the sons of Mosiah, none of the trials I have gone through on my mission can begin to compare to them. That does not mean that things haven't been and won't continue to be difficult at times, but this promise goes for all the Lord's servants. I know the frustration I sometimes feel reading about Laman and Lemuel, is the same behavior I manifest at time, and I am so grateful that the Lord lives perfectly by the command "Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you" because I know as many times as I may have forgotten, he is infinitely patient in helping and waiting until we remember again. I'm not sure if that makes any sense, but that's what I have been thinking about this week.

Love you all! Have a great week! 

Happy Mission Conference! And mission president approved special visitor ❤❤

Hermana Meredith

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