This week felt like FOREVER. In the white handbook it talks about P-day and shares the scripture in Mosiah 4:27 And see that all these things are done in wisdom and order; for it is not requisite that a man should run faster than he has strength. And again, it is expedient that he should be diligent, that thereby he might win the prize; therefore, all things must be done in order.
I now completely understand why that is there. It was hardly a Pday last Monday so I'm super grateful to have another one today. But no importa! This week has been INCREDIBLE! I've seen so many miracles and so many blessings. This really is the Lords work.
A few weeks ago Hermana Philips and I found a man near the new chapel that's being built. We gave him a BOM and he promised to read and meet with us after a few weeks. Well those few weeks passed and we had an appointment set up with him and his family on Tuesday. I was tooooooooo excited! This man was so happy and seemed so prepared when we met him and I was so excited to finally find and teach a family. So on Monday right after the end of "Preparation Day" I decided to give him a call to confirm the appointment that we had set up. He told us that because of family visits he wouldn't be able to meet, but then continued to explain that he had been reading the BOM, felt good about it, then went on our website to the frequently asked questions page. He explained that he no longer had questions about our faith and that the appointment would be entirely unnecessary.
My heart stopped. I stumbled to find the right words to say and the next thing i knew, the conversation was over. I was completely heartbroken. I prayed to God saying, "I've been working so hard. I've been giving it my all. The gospel is true, why wont they listen? Where did I go wrong? What should I have said? What should I have done? What can I do?" This family was so close to receiving the most incredible gift of eternity that we can find on the earth but he was too easily satisfied with the answers to his questions. I invited him to continue reading the Book of Mormon and to pray if it was true and that further down the road we could visit him again.
We have another friend about two pueblos away from Villalba. Last Saturday she accounted the trials and struggles in her life. She lives a great distance from any loved ones and feels completely alone. We were able to teach her the lesson of the Restoration and testify how the Gospel blesses our lives. She told us of her experience in the prominente church here in Spain, explaining that everyone kept to themselves and that even there she felt alone.
I know the gospel can help her but she still can't see it. I've been pondering the idea of how we can help these people progress in their conversion to the Lord and although it's a working progress, I have found a bit of the answer.
Yesterday Ninez, our recent convert, came to me and told me of a revelation she received in the temple as she was doing baptisms for the dead. She told me that she felt strongly impressed that she needed to be doing more to share the Gospel. She discussed with me a family member and asked me for help in inviting her to the Gospel. As she finished writing down the information of this beloved family member and handed me the paper I thanked her for the reference. She in turn said, "No, thank you for helping me keep a commandment of the Lord."
I think too often as members of the church we become complacent in our efforts to share the Gospel with others, forgetting that it truly is a commandment of the Lord. I remember these two friends who are so close to receiving the fullness of joy God has in store for them. As a missionary there are many things I need to improve within myself and within my teaching, that is obvious and to state otherwise would be frankly dishonest. But I am thoroughly convinced that if these two friends were befriended by a member, their stories would be completely different.
I know I've shared before the story of Ninez and Kike. They were a reference from the Bishops wife Monica. As their kids were friends the mothers decided to have a brunch together. At the brunch Ninez offered Monica a coffee. Monica stated boldly that she does not drink coffee because of her religion. This caught the attention of Ninez enough to start asking questions. Monica answered simply and clearly. The questions continued and Monica invited her to learn more from the Missionaries. She and her family are now baptized, active, contributing members of the Ward.
I am grateful for Monica's example to share the gospel and I'd like to invite you all to do the same. I love talk given by Elder Oaks this last General Conference. He explains simply and clearly we as members can share the gospel in a natural way, no matter the friend or circumstance. Pray for opportunities to share the gospel and when the opportunities come be proud of what you believe and continue to give them opportunities to ask you questions.
I'm so grateful for the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We really can be forgiven of our wrongdoings and feel free from guilt. I know Christ lives and that he loves us individually. He set the perfect example. As you follow His example and study his words you will know what to say in the exact moment you need to say it.
I hope you all have a fabulous week! We had a few more miracles that I wont get to share today but I know that God's hand truly is in the work.
Awkward besitos to everyone!