Baptism Nov 7 2009

Baptism Nov 7 2009

Monday, March 29, 2010

27th week in Spokane

Well we had quite the week! We helped these people move, we did all the work, filled and unloaded 4 U-Haul truck loads! It was a good experience because it was these peoples first exposure to missionaries and they just fell in love with us! I got a funny story that happened this last week. First off we were trying to catch this one lady home and as we were walking up to her door her next door neighbor started yelling and cussing at us, he was dead drunk.. at 2 o'clock in the afternoon.. telling us to get outta here and yellin and cussin and he walked up to us and then his two friends came up with him and started asking questions like how did you get so brainwashed and corrupted and so Elder Moleni and I separated, he taught the drunk guy and I taught the friends.. it was awesome, we stood our ground, we testified, we confounded.. they were humbled and by the end they were huggin, praying, and told us to keep up the good work! It was pretty sweet! Then we tracted into this guy who thought he knew it all and as soon as he answered the door he started calling us liars and deceivers and all that good stuff.. so we ended up talking to him for about 45 minutes or so and he would just keep going in circles and wouldn't accept anything we said and it started to get frustrating, then he made a few comments that boiled our blood so we decided we were done with him and started testifying all over the place and the spirit completely left him confounded and so we left it at that! We were biking down the street, for some reason we decided to take the long way to our next appointment, well we ran into this guy who was in an electric wheel chair and as soon as he saw us he started yelling and cussing.. it was half at us and half at God. He was a little bit drunk but just a little. He kept saying how God had left him confined to his wheel chair and for about ten minutes he kept goin in circles with what he was saying.. how he doesn't have the physical strength to get home and that not even God could give him the power to get home. So finally I realized what he was saying.. his wheel chair had run out of power and he couldn't move because of it. So I told him that God can get him home and He sent us to do it and we got off our bikes and pushed him home. He was completely shocked. Think of the movie Forest Gump and how uptight lieutenant Dan was and then all of a sudden he came to peace with God and was happy. That's the kind of transition that we saw in this guy, it was a neat experience. We had another experience that was pretty interesting. We talked to a guy for an hour and twenty minutes.. he was the most knowledgeable and accurate person I've talked to so far concerning the gospel and its doctrine.. outside the church.. he had some amazing insights that I had never heard anyone outside the church talk about. He was off on a few, important things, but his heart was so shut it was impossible to get him to think of something outside of what he already knew. The interesting thing is even though he was speaking truths and making true inferences, the spirit just wasn't with him, and whenever the spirit would present itself to him he would completely reject it, as if there was another force in play. Interesting is the only word I can think of to describe the situation. But a very cool thing happened.. he told us that he wants us to go home and pray and ask if I have been deceived, if I have been worshiping the wrong God.. and he promised me that I would get an answer. But I didn't have to wait until I got home.. as he was issuing the invitation the spirit confirmed everything. I know that there has been no deceiving. When I received my answer that the church is true, that the book of Mormon is true, that Joseph Smith was and is the prophet of the restoration of the fullness of times, that he was called with the mission to prepare the hearts of the children of men for Christ's second coming.. when I received that answer, it had nothing to do with logic or anything intellectual.. God spoke to me through the Holy Ghost. His Spirit spoke to mine and absolutely NOTHING can tear that away, that bond is sealed.. it has turned from faith to knowledge. I KNOW everything we teach is of God and is true. That same conviction that I received is just waiting for all those that diligently seek it. So seek it.

Monday, March 22, 2010

26th Week in Spokane

Alright so I'm gonna start off with a couple of funny stories that happened this last week. First off I got this huge envelope from Mongolia and inside of it were tons and tons of letters that got sent to me to Mongolia and I guess they've been piling up there and they were just waiting for me to get there but they decided to go ahead and send it since I'm not ever gonna get there. So if you've sent letters in the past, I'm sorry for not replying, but they were in Mongolia ha ha.
So one of the guys we are teaching just started doing this backyard wrestling thing and asked us to come support him so we decided to go check it out. We knew it would mean a lot to him and we figured that it would be an opportunity to meet new people that we otherwise would have never met. So we went and funny thing is that it was held in a members back yard! It was really a funny thing watching and hearing everyone's reaction as we walked up and started watching and saying hi to everyone and our arrival was even announced over the loud speaker!! I'll never forget the looks on some of the peoples faces!! Well we stayed long enough to watch our friend, Corey, wrestle and then we headed out. That was last week, then this week he asked us to come back, so we did and there was about 3 times as many people and same sorta deal happened watching everyone's reaction. At first I guess that people thought that we were there to like condemn them or something but soon everyone loosened up and again we just stayed long enough to watch Corey then we headed out. The cool thing is that later that day we found out that a guy that was at the wrestling stopped missionaries in the street and started talking to them. Its pretty exciting because here's all these people that would have never in their life even imagined themselves talking to missionaries but now they are. Anyways pretty cool I think!
Alright so I got another story for ya! In our ward there are two sets of elders and our bishop made us a deal that if we teach together 60 lessons in a week that he would polish our shoes in front of the ward council. Well we've been working on it and haven't been able to hit it, but this week we taught 64! So next week he's gotta polish our shoes!! Which is good cuz mine are in some serious need of it! We had some really good teaching experiences this past week too. Grandma Chris is still on date to be baptized April 3rd and we are excited about that and she's on her last pack of cigarettes right now then shes kickin it!! There are some really good people progressing pretty quick, Bryan, Sylvia, and Diana, we have a lot of faith that these three will be entering in the waters of baptism in April!! Well that's all for this week, I love you!

Monday, March 15, 2010

25th week in Spokane

This week was great, we were able to find a bunch of new people to teach who have prepared. One lady we have been teaching, who has adopted us as her grandchildren, Grandma Kris said that she's finally ready to quit smoking and be baptized on April 3! So please keep her in your prayers that she will be able to quit smoking! Unfortunately I don't have too much time to write again this week so I'll just hit the highlights. We did have a baptism this last weekend, it was awesome, her name is Mary Alice and her family has now all been baptized. She got married on Friday and baptized on Saturday, it was a great weekend! Then at the baptism she surprised me and asked her to confirm her, it was the first time I had done that and it was a great experience! Their family is so strong and I'm glad that I can be a part of that! I forgot to mention last week our living situation, we live with another set of missionaries in a house all by ourselves! Elder Aslanian, from Arizona, and Elder Akaka from Hawaii, its a lot of fun because we can build on each other and help each other keep the rules and everything like that. Well that's all I have time for this week but I love you and I'll make it up to you next week as I'm sure we will be able to find and teach more people who I need to tell you about! Oh and by the way, Elder Moleni says hi!

Monday, March 8, 2010

24th Week in Spokane

We were able to witness a real miracle this week. Will Thornton was baptized, confirmed, and received the Aaronic Priesthood! Will's wife Evelyn was baptized about six months ago and will wasn't all that supportive of her but little by little he became more receptive to the gospel as he saw the changes that took place in Evelyn. He had some big problems with the word of wisdom and as his testimony of the gospel grew so did his desire to quit those bad habits. By the time I came to the area he had kicked everything except one that he was holding onto and just couldn't quite leave it behind. So the first day I was here we taught Will and we made a goal for march 6 to get baptized. In order to get baptized he had to be clean from everything for one week and have a desire to not partake of any of it any more. Well we called him a couple days later and he said that he's just not ready and that its really hard to quit this last thing especially since he had already given up so much. So we met with him on Feb 27 and had another lesson with him. It went way way good, the spirit was so strong, we read with him Ether 12 and talked a lot about faith and about weaknesses and how if we give our weaknesses to the Lord He will turn them into strengths. We again recommitted him to obey the word of wisdom and to be baptized the following week on march 6. He accepted and we told him that we would keep in contact with him daily and also gave him a ton of sticky notes to put around the house, and wherever temptations are the strongest, and put on them the date march 6th so that each time he was tempted he would think of his baptism and to say a short prayer asking for strength. Well each day that we called him he said that he was good to go. About Wednesday came around and he said that he was still good but that he was really struggling. On Thursday he said the same thing but that its getting almost unbearable, he was getting way bad headaches and the temptation was almost too strong for him to handle. He asked us to give him a blessing. That night we met with him and he didn't look too good, you could tell that he was really struggling. We shared with him the story of Moses and how he saw and talked to God face to face and beheld his glory and how right after Satan appeared to him in the form of a man and told Moses to worship him and Moses said to the effect of why should I worship you, you have no glory like God does, he says I am a son of the living God, depart hence Satan. And then Satan gets mad and shakes the earth and Moses finally realizes that he can't do it on his own so he called on God and says in the name of Jesus Christ depart hence and Satan departed. We likened that to him in saying that we are each literal sons and daughters of our Heavenly Father and at times of temptations we can't always do it on our own and we have to ask God for His help and He will always help because He always gives us a way out, if we turn towards Him. So we gave Will a blessing and afterwords he said that he feels so good, and that he feels like a huge weight just lifted off of him and he realized that he has just been trying to do this whole thing on his own but he saw how he needs help from our Heavenly Father to make it through this life. Then two days later he was baptized and yesterday he was confirmed, received the Holy Ghost, and received the Aaronic Priesthood. Will was literally glowing. We had the great blessing to be able to witness such a miracle.
The new area is great. the ward I'm in is the Beacon Hill ward. It is the highest baptizing ward in the whole north western states. So far this year the ward has had 10 baptisms! There are so many people in this area that have been prepared by the Lord to receive this gospel and I am so grateful to have the blessing of being a tool in the Lords hand as He calls His children to come to Him.
My new companion is awesome, he's a 6'3" 250 lb Tongan and he is not in the slightest bit fat! The cool thing is that he is from New Zealand and our grandparents new each other,pretty well I'm sure. And I'm sure now that our moms are gonna become good friends. He also played rugby for highland, I played for United, which means that we were rival teams. Luckily we never played against each other since I'm a couple years older then he is. But its been fun because we have so much in common.
We also had another baptism on the 6th, his name is Micheal, he's 10 years old and his Mom was baptized a little while back too. We also have a baptism this Saturday on march 13. Her name is Mary Alice. Her whole family has been baptized within the past four months. She has four kids and she is getting married on the 12th and baptized the next day! We have been teaching a whole lot of people, we average about 30 lessons a week and I'm lovin it!
I'm not in Mongolia, but it doesn't matter because I'm still able to preach the gospel. Its such a blessing to enter into these peoples lives and watch as the Lord takes over and see them change their lives as they come closer to the Lord. It makes me realize how I've taken for granted the gospel in the past and makes me never want to do that again. It's such a blessing to have a prophet on the earth today to guide and direct us as he speaks for the Lord.