Monday, May 5, 2014

WEEK 12 WYOMING/HASTINGS (WEEK 48 OF MISSION)

hello everybody! what a great week!! it is soo good to be a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints! there is nothing like it!
 
Just a big broken tree!
I forgot to tell you all last week! a visa waiter in st josephs got his visa and left for brazil. they transferred out an elder from our zone to replace him, and president hess asked if i would go fill that elder from our zone's spot. so i was in hastings this past week and it has been wonderful! 

I got to get back out and door knock more than i have in months this past week and it was soo good!! haha i loved it. it was rainy most of the time, but a few days were just perfect weather! i love meeting people and talking with them and sharing the gospel with them. it is really hard sometimes when people just dont see what happiness and relief this message can bring them, but it never can dampen our spirits or shake our testimonies. 
Parker with Elder Todd in Hastings this week.
"Let me take a selfie!" 
Crocheted Underwear hung up as Decorations! What???
its incredible how miracles and disappointments happen simultaneously out here every day. you find a new investigator, another investigator tells you they dont want to talk anymore. just things like that. we had a few things like that happen this week. but again, there is no reason to be sad other than that these great people are missing out on the greatest blessings in the world! we are offering eternal life! free of charge! haha all it’ll do is bring peace, happiness, and understanding to your life!

because hastings is a smaller ward, i was able to teach the 16-18 yr old youth class this week as well as bear my testimony in sacrament meeting. i am so thankful for this church and for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. it has substance. He is the light and the life of the world. 

in our youth class, we talked about if we are saved by grace or not. since i was posing the question to a group of lds teens and one non-member who was in the class (she is an investigator currently attending a "bible church") i was interested to see the responses. I asked the investigator, Anna to answer the question first, knowing she would say yes. she did. i asked the class. they responded with different answers, most of which consisted of, "yes, but..." as we talked, we learned that we truly are saved by grace and grace alone. if it were otherwise, there would be no salvation. if we had to live our best, and then Christ would do the rest, none of us would be saved, because none of us can even do our best without His help!! aint that something though? (that’s a little phrase i have picked up out here haha) its true!! we need Christ's sustaining influence to even be our best. we are not here to earn heaven, we are here to learn heaven. its not so much about being saved by grace as it is about being CHANGED BY GRACE. Christ paid for our sins not so that we could commit more sins and live miserable lives, but so Heavenly Father could withhold punishment for our sins and allow us to grow and progress; to become more like Christ. As we repent of the mistakes we have made, and try to do better each day, we will come to see that Christ's grace IS sufficient. it wont be easy, especially because satan will work against you: he wants you to believe you cant change and that things will never get better. his purpose is to make men miserable, like him. God's purpose is to make us eternally happy, like Him. Have you been changed by grace? keep practicing. 

ps this week was district conference up north and apparently the saturday night missionary session featured testimonies from the Draher's and Sister Nelson! they also talked about the kalkaska branch ward council and things and how we were able to work so effectively! cool huh? the drahers have all gotten their patriarchal blessings and sue got hers this weekend! they are all progressing toward going through the temple in about 8 months!! carl draher was given the melchizedek priesthood this past week!! awesome!! this is what missionary work is all about!! no greater joy than seeing these people progress in the gospel!!

have a great week!

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