Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Been too long, 21 March to 17 April 2016

Time flies!  It's been almost a month since I have written anything, so sorry.  Some weeks are busy and others slow down and the week of the 21 March was one of those slow weeks.  We continue to read the Book of Mormon with out young family, he is a member but less active, his wife is not a member.  They have a darling 18 month old boy who keeps them busy.  She loves reading the Book of Mormon, she said that what the Elders have taught her combining that with the Book of Mormon has made all the difference.  Truly it is the corner stone of out religion and bears such a witness of our Savior and of his doctrine and teachings.

We've been working with a young couple in our ward who has three daughters, they are living with her mother for now until they get a house sold and finances in order.  We had not met the husband until Easter Sunday when they attended church, then visited with them a few days later and asked them if they would attend a temple preparation class.  They have agreed and we've been asked to teach it starting in mid May, our bishop is inviting others to attend as well, with those who have never been to the temple or those who have and it's been along time.  We are looking forward to teaching this class on such an eternal matter.

March has been missionary month for our ward, we were asked to participate with Elders Edlinger and Fairbanks who serve in our stake and two other stakes to be on a panel Easter Sunday with the young men and young women asking questions as well as Bishop Larsen.  The spirit was sweet and had very good questions.  On Tuesday of that week they youth were to go out two by two, some had to be in three's, to members home for dinner then they were to give a discussion on the Restoration.  We had offered if we were needed.  That afternoon we were visiting our Sister Balle who is related to Elder Morley when our bishop called asking us if we could have three young men to dinner and they give us the lesson as the family they were to go to had to cancel, this was at 4:00 PM, dinner at 6:00 PM.  What a blessing to have these three young priests in our home, we served them lasagna, green salad and peach cobbler with ice cream.  They then taught us the lesson on The Restoration and did so very well.  They brought a sweet spirit into our home.

On the 30th March we had Zone Conference.  Before it started we watched a documentary on the Provo Tabernacle when it burned down, when President Monson announced it was going to be rebuilt into the Provo City Center Temple and the completion of it, brought back the beautiful day of it's dedication.  President Killpack is a spiritual giant.  He instructed us very well doing out calling and inviting others to come unto Christ.

A Brother Gonzales from the missionary department spoke as well telling us that the Lord will increase u sin  our calling.  He also taught us well.  I had a thought of our young family we are reading the Book of Mormon with in what we need to do to encourage them to attend church and to let her know she doesn't need to know everything before she is baptized.  Ray and I participated with the Highland district in singing a special musical number.  These Zone conferences are also nice to be able to visit with the other senior couples.

Also during this same week we were able to visit with three other families, a Sister who is a widow with a son who served a mission and has been home a year and a 15 year old daughter, they get slacked in their church attendance every so often.  Another widow who is raising two grandchildren, tends three other grandchildren.  We had the ward mission leader along with us and he will bring her needs up in ward council that she needs home teachers and if someone in the primary could pick up her 11 year granddaughter when she is unable to attend due to her illness that flares up.   Then the last family we visited is a couple who both have been on a mission, has a four year old boy and has wanted more children but unable to, the husband has gotten upset with God and has quit going to church.  We had a wonderful visit with them, they told us about their desire and frustration in trying for another child.  I then told them that both Ray and I oldest daughters both couldn't have children but adopted.  Ray had something he was going to tell them but when he opened his mouth the spirit spoke through him and he just said, "I feel I need to suggest and challenge you to go back to the temple."  They said they would and they have gone back to church.

General conference was marvelous, being taught by our Prophet and Apostles and other leaders, especially by President Monson when he talked on choices and the choices we make determines our destiny and to choose the hard right and not the easy wrong.  We are so blessed to have the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ once again upon the earth and to have a prophet who receives revelation, to have the truth once again on the earth and the holy priesthood.

We were asked by a sister in our ward who is so faithful in her covenants, her husband who has served a mission has chosen to go inactive.  She had a 17 year old daughter who is an amazing young lady, we've adopted her as our granddaughter and I get hugs every time I see her.  Her son who is 12 years old has started to question the church and doubt the truth so she asked us if we would visit him.  We decided to visit the three of them on Sunday 10 April after he had gone out collecting fast offerings.  I talked of President Monson's talk on choices, then Ray told them of his conversion when he was 17 years old and how his mother told him that she might have to live with one Mormon, who was her husband, but not another one and she told  Ray if he was baptized he was no longer welcome in the home, he was baptized and he had to leave the home, but in about 6 months her heart softened but when he accepted his mission call she again had him leave.  The spirit was so strong and all three of them had tears streaming down their cheeks.  I felt impressed to tell the young man how important him being a deacon is, how he represents the Savior, and how it became personal to me when I couldn't attend church for about 6 weeks and two priests came to my home and gave me the sacrament, I learned how personal the Savior's sacrifice was for me.  I told him that his calling so more important than anything else, more important than even the President of the country.  His countenance had changed from the first time he had sat down to when we left.  We saw him this past Sunday in church and he was able to pass the sacrament to us with a small grin.

We have a new elder as of last week seeing it was transfer week, we still have Elder Fairbanks and we received Elder McHood who had been serving in the Orem area, wonderful young man.  We have them over for lunch each week to coordinate who we and they visit.  It is so humbling to serve with these young men and now we have two grandson's who are putting in their request to serve a mission after they graduate from high school in the next month and to know how their lives will be blessed as well as so many others.

We lost one family we had been reading the Book of Mormon with for the first two months of our mission, he has chosen his other way of life and yet he knows the Book of Mormon is true.  When one submits to the desire of the flesh and the evil one, they have to work hard to break away and he is not willing to do so, so the Elders and us will walk away for now but the ward mission leader will try to still work with the family, especially the father.   He was so close, had such a testimony then chose to step into the evil ones territory.  We just have to move on to those who are willing to listen and want to come back to the Savior.  

Last Friday t he 15th, we had our Zone training meeting, it consist of two districts, ours and Highland/Alpine.  Once again, we were well taught seeing this type of mission we are on is just about 2 1/2 years old in Utah.  We see the ward leaders are learning more how to use us in teaching, helping mostly the less active members of their ward.  We have a wonderful, spiritual giant of a Stake President, his counselor who is over missionary work in the stake and the two high councilmen as well.  We are so supported in this great work but especially supported by the Lord himself.  It's a mission I had never desired to serve but I am grateful the Lord called us to represent Him and reach out to his children.