Tuesday, January 15, 2013

The power of the Spirit!

Hi everyone!  I've been excited to write to you all week because there were so many great things that happened this week.  We saw so many miracles and I learned so much about following the Holy Ghost.
Last week after zone leader council Hermana Jensen and I were invited to give the training for our monthly zone meeting, which is usually given by the zone leaders.  We were given the topic of the power of the Holy Ghost in conversion.  It was an amazing opportunity, and I feel like I learned so much about the importance of the Holy Ghost as we prepared for and gave the training.  As we were preparing we felt like we kept hitting walls as we tried to organize the way we'd teach the doctrine and set up the role-plays.  Eventually, as we sat in our apartment a little frustrated because nothing was coming together, we decided to just role play the whole thing as if we were giving the training.  It was amazing to see that once we opened our mouths and started teaching each other, we knew exactly what to say and the Spirit guided us in preparing the training.  We decided that we should apply that to the actual role play and focus more on having a spiritual and faith-building experience with the missionaries rather than focusing just on practicing teaching skills.  We gave the training at zone meeting on Tuesday and we both felt like it went well.  Having to prepare the practice also taught us a lot of things that we needed to learn personally to be able to have some of the amazing experiences we had this week.
On Wednesday night we taught Nancy again.  It was such a powerful lesson!  We felt prepared to teach by the Spirit and to help her understand the role of the Spirit.  At the end of the lesson, she prayed sincerely to know if what we're teaching her is true.  In her prayer, she said, "I know what they're teaching is true, but I want to feel it."  Wow!  At the end of the prayer we all were so excited, including her, because we could feel the Spirit starting to give her answers.  She's so great!  She has a sincere heart and real intent.
On Friday we had the chance to go to a meeting for new leaders that's held every transfer.  Even though the meeting is usually for district leaders, we got to go as well.  It was interesting because most of the meeting focused on preparing the new district leaders to be prepared to give baptismal interviews.  We got to role play with the elders on helping investigators through issues with one of the baptismal interview questions. At first I felt a little weird role-playing something that's not directly part of my responsibilities as a missionary, but it ended up being a great experience.  As Elder Croft expressed several times, a baptismal interview is a wonderful teaching experience.  I felt that being able to do that practice helped me understand the role of repentance and the importance of showing love in helping people prepare to be members of the Lord's Church.
Sunday was a great day!  We were a little discouraged during our morning meetings because all of our investigators had told us they wouldn't be making it to church.  However, as I looked down from my spot at the piano after the opening prayer in sacrament meeting, I saw that literally 75% of the less-active members in our area were in the chapel!  It was astounding.  Some of these people have never been to church the entire time I've been in the area, and they came this week.  A miracle!
Yet ANOTHER miracle Sunday night was our lesson with David, the recent convert that I've written about several times.  We had a lesson with him in the bishop's home with the YSA representatives of the ward.  We taught about the baptismal covenant and it was an amazing lesson.  Sometimes when we teach it feels like there's a lot of separation of roles--that we're the missionaries, the members are the members, and the person being taught is kind of sitting there in the middle.  This lesson went totally differently, and the difference was made by the Spirit.  In this lesson, it felt so much better, and rather than feeling that separation of roles, I felt that we're all brothers and sisters trying to learn and apply the same truths to our lives as we're taught by the Spirit of the Lord.  Everyone was sincerely invested in feeling the Spirit and learning something, and it was so powerful that Sister Jensen and I were both fighting back tears.  At the end of the lesson everyone was in agreement that the lesson was just for them, including David.  We left the house with David sitting at the bishop's dining room table eating cookies and hot chocolate with everyone like he'd never been away from the church a day in his life.  It was such a happy sight. :)
I feel so blessed to be here and to be able to learn so much about our Heavenly Father's plan for us.  This plan is real, and I see His hand helping His children through that plan every day.  The Spirit of the Lord is working miracles daily.

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