This week was really good. We were blessed to find Livorio, our investigator we lost track of last week. Sister Osborn and I went to his house once again because we saw his van was there. We went up to the gate and his 3 dogs started barking at us, as they always do. He usually is there to put them away and save our ankles from being chewed, but this time he wasn't. Liviorio knows we're terrified of his dogs and thinks it's hilarious. We debated the pros and cons of putting our feet through the dog version of a paper shredder, and decided finally that we just had to cowboy up and go knock on his door. We prayed for the beasts' mouths to be shut, I opened the gate, marched past our snarling furry friends, and knocked on the door. Livorio opened it, looked at me, and said, "Que valiente!" ("How brave!") Since then we've been able to have consistent contact with him. He came to church this Sunday for the first time! It was cool to see him recognize that church really is a place where he can receive answers for his personal questions. He had a revelatory experience and told our ward mission leader that he'll be coming every week to receive more good teachings. :) He's still looking great for his baptismal date, and we feel like he's felt the support of the ward and wants to keep moving forward. It's wonderful to see the Spirit keep working on Livorio. I was reading his teaching record from when he was an investigator in 2009, and it's astounding to see all of the changes in his life that have prepared him to be at this point and to accept the gospel. I wish those missionaries who first started teaching him 3 years ago could see the progress he's made in his understanding of the gospel and his willingness to show his faith and live it. One way or another, all the work that every missionary does is part of God's greater plan for His children.
This week we were also blessed to be able to attend a fireside on member missionary work given by Elder Packer of the Seventy. He talked about how members can apply the principles of Preach My Gospel. Preach My Gospel truly is an inspired work. President Meredith shared a quote from a General Authority (don't remember who) that says, "Preach My Gospel was designed beyond the veil and put together here on earth." That's very true! I've seen so many miracles and found so many solutions by reading and applying Preach My Gospel.
I also had a cool experience with teaching a new couple we found. We taught them the message of the Restoration. Their kids were making a mess and breaking things, their food was burning on the stove, and everything was super distracted when we started the lesson. The husband was defensive and skeptical at first, but as we started to help them see that the confusion they've felt and the questions they've had about religion could be answered through the Restored gospel, we saw huge changes in them. The distractions were still there, but the Spirit was cutting through them like a knife. The husband was a different person by the time the lesson ended, and I know there's nothing that could have made that change but the Spirit of God. It was touching to hear him pray out loud for his family and to see the excitement they had to learn more. Heavenly Father knows His children and His Spirit is touching their hearts and leading them to the truth in ways that no missionary can understand. This is His work and I feel so blessed to be a part of it.