Monday, September 13, 2010
Hello Family! How was your week? Did you have fun in St. George, Mom? What about the rest of you? Thank you so much for your e-mails, Mom, Dad, Brooke, and Car! I can't wait to hear about all of the great things that you were able to do this week! I have been thinking about you and praying for you!
Blessings were poured out upon us this week!!! I still am in shock! I had an idea at the beginning of last week to make a big board with all of our goals and numbers that we set for the week. I have never done that before but it was just an idea that came to my mind so I thought I would try it out. Every night I would check off how many member present lessons we had had, other lessons, member lessons, new investigators we found, etc. and I was able to keep a clear vision of how we were doing and what we needed to accomplish by the end of the week. My prayers became more fervent and sincere as I went in prayer to Heavenly Father and asked him for specific help to accomplish the goals that we had set under the direction of the Spirit. The week was going really well but by Saturday we realized that we were falling a little short with some of our key indicators and we weren't sure if we were able to reach our goals with only Sunday left. We still had to have 4 member present lessons and 2 other lessons to be able to make it and seeing that we had only had 1 member present lesson in 6 days, we were wondering how it was going to work out. But as a companionship we went on our knees, and with the little faith we had, asking for more faith, we pled with Heavenly Father to help us reach our goals. We had 4 member present lessons, 2 other lessons, and an extra bonus of 2 new investigators yesterday! It was AMAZING!!! It strengthened my testimony that as we are specific with the things we desire to accomplish, if our desires are righteous, and if we turn to the Lord for help and put our faith in Him, He can bring to pass many miracles. I can't wait to see it happen again this week!
I think that a great part of the success that we saw can be attributed to the wonderful mission conference that we had on Wednesday with Elder Ballard, Elder Rasband, and Elder Causse. It was a spiritual feast! Wednesday started out bright and early-4:15 a.m.-because we had to be in Rotterdam by 7:00 to catch the bus that was rented for all of the missionaries. There was so much excitement in that bus knowing that within a few short hours we would be in the presence of an apostle of the Lord. It was a lot of fun to be together as a whole mission and to see all of the missionaries that I love so much! When we finally arrived in Brussels at 10:00 we had a light breakfast and got in our places on the stage for a big group picture with Elder Ballard. When he, the other authorities, and President and Sister Brubaker walked into the building, the whole church fell still. The Spirit was overwhelming and so powerful. He came walking in and greeted us with a big smile. You could feel warmth and love radiating from him. After the picture, we all took our seats in the chapel where he and the others instructed us for a few hours. He really focused on becoming a master teacher like the Savior Jesus Christ. I will include President's weekly letter in my e-mail so you can get an overview of what they taught us. It was so powerful that I did not leave the meeting just being spiritually boosted but as a changed missionary. As the meeting came to a close we had the opportunity to go up and shake his hand one by one and greet him. That was the first time I ever was able to shake the hand of an apostle and it was an experience I will never forget! Vitalis is still progressing and is reading in the Book of Mormon! He went to a dinner appointment this week and got to know some members. He is nervous about coming to church but we are working through his concerns. Elisabeth accepted a soft baptismal commitment and she is planning on being baptized on October 30!!! She is also finally reading in the Book of Mormon and praying about it so I am anxious to see her progress. Esra and her two little friends came to church again yesterday and they just love being there. Esra is 8, Angel is7, and Jennifer is 6 and they are loved and welcomed by all of the ward members. The primary president even called us this morning and asked us if she could come with us to teach these little girls in their homes. That was a miracle! We are hopefully going to be having a lesson with each of them this week. Hopefully they will be the keys to get their parents to investigate the church! Children are amazing and have so much faith!
We are continuing to work with the members and we are making big strides. They are growing in enthusiasm for the work...it is a miracle to behold!
I love you so much! Thanks for your prayers and your examples of faith and testimony. The Lord lives and loves us. This is his church and it was restored through the prophet Joseph Smith. Call on the Lord and he will bless you! Have a great week!
Love, Zuster Sharp