Monday, April 13, 2015

A Flashlight In Your Face

Area: Serenada
Companion: Sister Melissa Rowley

And the transfer news is..... I'll be staying here, in the Serenada ward, and Sister Rowley is being transferred. It's been a good transfer. Full of faith building experiences. I'm so glad to have served with Sister Rowley, she is amazing!

We went to zone meeting on Tuesday, which was fantastic, as usual! We have such great missionaries in our mission.

Sister Rowley and Sister Record. From last week, the beloved
Cadburry eggs and Starburst Jelly Beans. :)
Early in the week we were in a town that is far out in our area. We don't go there too often, but we decided to spend some time there. We got to talking to a man about eternal families. He was so sweet and ready to listen. Near the end of our "short and powerful statement of truth" he asked with gentle curiosity who we represent, and what church we belong to. We told him that we belong to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I felt the spirit really strong when immediately following the first response I stated, "And we represent Jesus Christ." The truth of that statement was felt not only by us, but by him as well. There is just something about truth that can be felt by any soul. Whether they hearken to it or not.

A couple days later we talked with a man who wasn't very kind, but polite enough to listen. He was a little mocking when we first came to the door, but came outside and essentially said, "Let's get it over with". We responded kindly but directly. We went on to tell him about the Book of Mormon. He proceeded to tell us about his religious background. What happened next was really interesting. He said that if Jesus Christ were right in front of him shining a flashlight in his face, he probably wouldn't notice. We testified that we were representatives of Jesus Christ, that God loves him, and wants him to know that, and that Jesus Christ was indeed shining a flashlight at him at that very moment. Everything changed. The spirit came, and he could feel it. Even though he was a little rough and tough, he softened. He said, "Well, I hope so." Heavenly Father loves each of his children, no matter how rough or not rough they are. I'm grateful for the opportunity to stand as a witness of God at all times, in all things, and in all places.

I've been pondering on the gift and beauty of repentance. Yesterday we experienced a miracle. There is a family in our ward who's husband and father is not a member, and not very religious. Previously he had been investigating with some Elders, but had stopped for an unknown reason. He is one of the nicest guys. Since we've been in this area, we've stopped by a couple times, and tried to call and set up a time to visit. It has never worked out until yesterday. We stopped by, and they were all home. We read a few verses in the Book of Enos when he talks about how his soul hungered and he prayed mightily for forgiveness. We talked to them about the beauty of repentance. We boldly invited {M} to take the lessons again. The spirit was really strong, and he said he'd consider. HUGE breakthrough moment!

I've heard many people speak of declaring repentance as an act of judgement. As though declaring repentance meant to point fingers at one's faults, thump a bible in their face, and speak of fire and brimstone. That is not repentance. Repentance is the gift and power God has given us to change through the atonement of His son, Jesus Christ. I have felt of this redeeming power in my life. I've felt the great joy that comes from being cleansed spiritually, again and again. Not only that, but I have seen his grace turn my weaknesses into strengths. It is beautiful, it is amazing, it is redeeming. How could I not share with others the strength I have found through Christ that they too can have? Repentance is a result of God's love for us, and his mercy. And so, I will declare repentance loudly and lovingly with the sound of rejoicing forever more. I will not rest until every soul I come in contact with knows that I have been changed through repentance and they can too. For the rest of my life and beyond, I will not be still. I will raise my voice of love and adoration for the gift of repentance, and I will invite others to do the same.

Sister Rowley, Sister and Brother Carter, Sister Record

I love the Lord, and I love his gospel. Which is the way for us to have peace in this life, and exaltation in the life to come.

How grateful I am for all that I'm learning on my mission!

With Love,
Sister Record

All in! :)

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