Companion: Sister Kaitlin Johnston
First of all, Jesus Christ is at the head of His work. This is His work. He is before my face and on my right hand and on my left. His angel are round about me to bear me up. I no longer just believe this, I know. This is the case with each of His servants. He is in charge, and with Him, we cannot fail.
The Book of Mormon combined with the spirit is the most powerful resource in conversion. Those who are truly converted have read and received a witness of the Book of Mormon. Those who fall away and become inactive know little about the Book of Mormon. It is another testament of Jesus Christ and a beautiful, powerful witness that must be boldly defended and lovingly shared.
I know that a prayer of faith is the source of receiving the spirit for ourselves and for those we teach. He hears my prayers, and hears your prayers, and the prayers of every single person. I know he answers. The Lord as asked us to share the light of the gospel so others can find their way. Happiness should not be something people are missing in their lives. Let the gift be shared. Once again, this is the Lord's work. Hurrah for Israel! In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
Being on a mission is so awesome! Something that always amazes me is how much people open up to the missionaries. I am 19 years old, yet people way older than me feel almost drawn to opening up and sharing their concerns. I know why. It's because we are representative of Jesus Christ. And whether people realize it or not, that is felt. What a privilege to listen and offer Christ's love to these people. When the spirit is present, the persons needs are met.
We found a new investigator! His name is C. He has a very fancy house and lives by himself. He was a referral from a family in the ward. He hasn't had any of the lessons before, but has been around Mormon's for a long time with work. We taught him the restoration. After recounting the first vision we asked him if he believed that this happened. He said he did! We taught him about the Book of Mormon and committed him to read it. Also, I invited him to be baptized. He flat out said no, but that was the most powerful moment for me. The spirit was so strong. We're going back to teach him this week and he's reading the Book of Mormon, so I'm confident that he'll come around. He seems so prepared and ready to receive the gospel.
We had another really cool experience with L. and S. S. has a hard time with the Word of Wisdom. We knew we needed to address it, but had no idea how to with him. We did our best to study and prepare. Before going in to teach, we completely turned over to the Lord knowing that S. had concerns and needs that we had no clue about, but the spirit did. I felt the impression before knocking on the door to promise a miracle. I wasn't sure what yet, but I knew it had something to do with the Book of Mormon. The lesson was powerful! We taught the atonement of Jesus Christ and how His grace is sufficient. We had him tell us the story of the old violin (from The Touch of a Master's Hand), that story had been shared in church. Near the end of the lesson I asked him if he had been reading the Book of Mormon. He said no. L. had been reading a little. I then followed the promptings of the spirit and promised them both, as a servant of the Lord Jesus Christ that if they would have the faith to truly and fully commit to reading the Book of Mormon every day this week with a sincere heart and pray with real intent, that they would find greater strength to overcome things that are holding them back. I can't remember exactly how it was worded, but that's in essence what I said. The spirit was so strong, and they both wholeheartedly committed. We been praying for them every day. We won't see them again until Thursday, but we know that if they choose and have the faith, that they will experience a miracle.
A mission is not easy, but it is the most incredible experience. I wouldn't trade it for the world. This is exactly where I need to be right now, and I am so grateful to be here sharing the gospel.
On a side note, I have had some pretty amazing food. Real Mexican food is sooo good. The people here know how to cook. :) Although, we went to a potential investigators home to help with some projects and teach a lesson and had some really gross lemonade. It tasted like water and bitter lemons. No sugar. It wouldn't have been so bad if it wasn't such a giant glass. Ha ha! So Chris, if you get called to serve in the US, you'll probably still have to consume something weird. :)
I love you all!
1. What experiences did you have with the Dragon Brownies in the MTC?
It was kind of a let down. I asked the district if they wanted to try some dragon brownies and told them they were spicy. Then no one wanted any. The sister's tried some in our room. Sister Pito and Sister Barrick didn't think they were that bad. They both like spicy food. But Sister Foster gagged and ran to spit it out, then chugged some water. So that was funny. :)
2. What are Sister Johnston's greatest strengths?
Sister Johnston is constantly doing something for someone. She is so great at serving and loving others. The first thing I noticed about her when I met her is how she just naturally wanted to help with everything. She strives for exact obedience, which I love. She's really diligent when it comes to missionary work. She is very patient with my learning and a great listener. She has incredible faith as well. The biggest thing I notice in her is quiet dignity. She's always composed and as a result the spirit is definitely with her.
3. What did you do before your mission that best prepared you for your work now?
President Slaughter said that "constant, consistent, personal purity" is the best indicator of preparedness. Looking back, some of the things that best prepared me were bearing my testimony in fast and testimony meeting, visiting teaching, ward mission night, spending valuable time with my family, and studying the scriptures everyday. All of those things had a deep impact on me that I didn't fully realize before. Living the gospel means living it. As I lived those things and practiced turning outward, I learned some things that I continue to look back on as I strive to more fully apply those principles on a mission.