So, I wanted to of course tell everyone about a wonderful experience we had this week with a person that I have come to love very dearly, Deb. This week she agreed to have a tour of the church, followed by a lesson in the building. A member from our ward came with us and the lesson was amazing! She said she felt such peace as she walked through the building, looking at the pictures of the Savior and said she could feel God's presence(the spirit). We then taught her about the gospel of Jesus Christ and invited her (for the second time) to be baptized by the priesthood authority of God. When we invited her, she scrunched her face, not wanting to give us an answer, and then asked if she could pray about it. We quickly said yes and then asked if she would like to pray about it right then. She agreed and offered the most beautiful, sincere prayer. She began to cry at the end of the prayer when she promised her Heavenly Father that if He allowed her to know if this is true, she would be baptized into His church. When she finished, she looked up at us and with tears in her eyes simply said, "yes". All three of us (Sister Thompson, the member, and I) were all wiping our eyes free of tears from the beautiful prayer and the power of the Spirit we felt present. It strengthened my testimony of the power of prayer. :)
That was such a powerful experience and I know Heavenly Father allowed us to have that experience at the beginning of the week so that we would be able to get through everything that happened to us throughout the rest of the week. One situation in particular, we witnessed a member who is seriously struggling with many different things. Because of everything going on in her life, she has stopped keeping the commandments and her faith is wavering. She has begun to question her decision to join the church. As Sister Thompson and I came home very hurt and saddened by this news, we began thinking about what could have led her to this point. We went through our records and found when she stopped coming to church, which led to her stopping her diligent scripture study, then she stopped praying, and from there more and more commandments were broken. Following this experience, I came across a talk given by President Uchtdorf. There is a specific quote that I wanted to share with all of you, it reads, "Diligently doing the things that matter most, will lead us to the Savior of the world."
I know that at the top of the list of the things that should matter most to us in our daily lives are praying and reading our scriptures. When we are keeping those simple commandments, we will want to obey ALL of God's commandments and do everything in our power to follow Him. This was something I really needed to hear this week, I hope it will mean something to you too. :)
I love you all so much!!!!! Thank you for being such a wonderful support system for me. It is much needed and GREATLY appreciated!
p.s. The pictures I am sending this week are: Sister Thompson and I at a beautiful memorial in our area for those who have served our country- part of the Masonic Village, and a picture of Nicole Brown at the Hill Cumorah Pageant!! A less active family that we teach went to the pageant and when they were showing us some of the pictures they took I saw the picture of Nicole and said, "wait! I have to take a picture of that picture - she is from my branch!" Haha, fun coincidence. :) LOVE YOU!