Tuesday, June 3, 2014

June 2, 2014

Elder Low's report:

This week I studied a bit in Ether for my investigators. One of the verses that always hits me in Ether is in chapter 12 verse 6: And now, I, Moroni, would speak somewhat concerning these things; I would show unto the world that faith is things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not, for ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith.
Sometimes as people, we expect results either before or exactly at the time that we show are faith, but as the Lord showed Moroni, faithful action must come first, followed by faithful patience and endurance, otherwise we don't have faith, as we don't trust in the Lord's promises.

This week was a super successful week for our area. We found a lot of new people as we continued to use both our part member families and knocking doors, better yet many of them understood how church and baptism would specifically help them as a result of how we taught our lessons and they were excited to accept the invitation to come and see. Sunday morning as we began our round-up, we found that many had fallen through, and the rest we could not contact. It was very discouraging. We went to the church quite hopeless. The Lord was more aware of us then we knew though. Halfway into the meeting we are pulled out by our ward mission leader. He doesn't say a word to us as we follow him up the pews. He leads us to the back to where one of our investigators was sitting quite comfortably listening to the testimonies being born. That day we had two people that came to sacrament meeting. it was not our doing, but the Lord had consecrated our efforts, and despite our discouragement, He had blessed us.

I know that the Lord is on our side. He wants to help us and as we give him all that we have the Lord will give us much much more.

Elder Low.

Possum Adventure

We went to the church for correlation meeting with our ward mission leader at 9 as well as to go on an knocking doors/interview exchange with the zone leaders, and while waiting in between the two in the chapel hallway, I hear something in the roof above me. I thought it was nothing but then I heard it again, like... little paws moving from roof tile to roof tile. I tell Elder C to stop and listen, and he hears it too. He says, "Aw man not again." Apparently they had caught animals before in the roof in this chapel. "It’s possums," he said. We call the member in charge of building maintenance who says he'll be coming in a couple of minutes and that he'll need our help. As we're waiting the zone leaders show up as well as the rest of the district to have a comp study. They all (minus the sisters) want in. By the time the member gets there half of us are running following the noises in the roof, while the other half is running away from the sounds for fear that it'll break through and attack (I plead the 5th on telling which group I was a part of). The member goes up and pulls out a cage trap and lowers it towards the trash can the zone leaders have placed beneath. As he does, slowly it is revealed, a very much alive, a baby possum, about 40 cm long. All seems to be under control until it starts to move towards the hands of Elder L (our zone leader) who is holding the cage. It scares him and the cage drops. The back breaks and the possum jumps onto the member’s leg. We all scream and it goes flying towards the door which is gladly opened. Only after opening the door and letting it escape do we realize it will just come back. So my companion and I and the zone leaders and Brother C run outside and for about twenty minutes chasing a possum through the bushes of the church until Elder N finally catches it. The last we saw of it, it was in the back of Brother C’s truck, heading back to the everglades.

May 27, 2014

Elder Low's report:

This week I've been reading in Mormon and focused quite a bit on Mormon chapter 9. This chapter talks quite a bit about the nature of God, how he has always been a speaking and an acting God. While I was reading in this chapter I specifically came across this verse:
 20 And the reason why he ceaseth to do miracles among the children of men is because that they dwindle in unbelief, and depart from the right way, and know not the God in whom they should trust.
God does not cease to do miracles, here Moroni specifies that. But he also explains here that to receive and see these miracles we must walk what he calls the "right way." This means we must follow the commandments and the voice of the spirit; in acting as the Lord would act. If we do this having faith in Christ, we have the promise that we will see miracles.

A couple of weeks ago Elder Corry and I felt strongly impressed to go to the house of a less active. It did not result in any new investigators, but from that visit it became extremely impressed upon both of us the importance of less active work. The man we found had a very strong testimony of the gospel but because of problems we still have yet to understand, he finds himself unable to go. "But," he stated, "The time I spent in the church was a very happy time in my life." We saw the fire of his testimony and realized how that lay in all of our less active members and in those recently converted. Now Two weeks later we have found 7 new investigators from LARC work and one of them which we found yesterday happened on accident. We knocked on our recent convert’s door. He opened the door and there sat one of his nonmember friends as well. We jumped on the opportunity. We shared a scripture on how the Lord makes us strong when we are weak (Ether 12:27) and asked him to be baptized to receive this strength. He said yes. His recently converted friend then jumped in and said he had already taught him much about the church.

I know as we act as the Savior would act, and help all people that we come into contact with, the Lord will provide miracles’.

Elder Low.

May 19, 2014

Elder Low's report:

A while back I read about Ammon and the sons of Mosiah, which I reviewed a little bit this week. What I looked at was particularly was a pattern I noticed between both Ammon's teaching approach with king Lamoni and that of the sons of Mosiah when they later teach his father. They are very similar; both groups demonstrate humility and instead of announcing themselves as great teachers, they proclaim themselves as servants. Then they move on to teach the doctrine of Jesus Christ which both king Lamoni and his father act upon immediately, having come to understand the role of these missionaries in their lives, and trusting in them. Forgive me for reading between the lines, but it seems to me that this was not a coincidence. Ammon had found great success among the Lamanites by using this technique, and I feel like he shared the secret to his success with his friends when he rescued them. Then they must have done something very difficult, having seen little success so far they were humble enough to accept the advice of their friend and because of it, thousands of people were baptized and converted, and as it says in the scriptures "never fell away."

This week we were having a lot of heartache with our investigators as they were not keeping their commitments. We kept giving they more, kept trying with them, kept sharing doctrine, but again and again they just were not keeping commitments. As we were nearing the end of the week the zone leaders went on a fire exchange with us. After Elder N and I knocked doors he gave me some advice about how I dealt with the people. He said "one thing that has helped him is whenever he knocks a door or talks to someone he makes sure that he does everything he can; talking to them the simplest and boldest he can, to save their soul," and challenged me to be more bold with my investigators. I'm not going to lie it was a tough cookie to swallow, but I knew it would help. Later that day I called an investigator up to see if he'd come to church. He said he had planned to watch a football game with his friends that day and couldn't come. remembering the advice I told him, "Dave, if you do not come to church this Sunday you cannot get baptized the next, and you won't feel the peace that we know you are looking for." Suddenly understanding the doctrine he agreed to come, stating, "if that's what it takes then I'll do it."

I know as we are humble enough to consider the teachings and advice given to us by our leaders and those we care about, including the Lord, we will see blessings, watching ourselves change, and we come closer and closer unto Christ.

Elder Low

May 12, 2014

Elder Low's report:

This week I've been reading in Alma 24, the speech of King Lamoni after his conversion, and the resultant actions of his people. I love this chapter because it demonstrates that once people come to understand that the joy they seek, and feel comes through following Jesus Christ, not only do they cease to do evil, but they actually refuse to return to it:
17 And now it came to pass that when the king had made an end of these sayings, and all the people were assembled together, they took their swords, and all the weapons which were used for the shedding of man’s blood, and they did bury them up deep in the earth.

 18 And this they did, it being in their view a testimony to God, and also to men, that they never would use weapons again for the shedding of man’s blood; and this they did, vouching and covenanting with God, that rather than shed the blood of their brethren they would give up their own lives; and rather than take away from a brother they would give unto him; and rather than spend their days in idleness they would labor abundantly with their hands.
This week was a week of miracles president. Honestly to point out one thing which was more worthy of telling then another would not be just. I will write instead in general the things we saw as many of our investigators toke huge steps towards conversion. One investigator, who knew that the church was true and who told the missionaries that she wanted to be baptized after the temple tour, but who had had a really hard time just picking a date, after watching a video depicting the baptism of Christ, with tears in her eyes asked us what she needed to bring to be baptized that Sunday. With the next person we shared the record of the personal ministry of Jesus Christ recorded in 3 Nephi 11, and bore testimony that it was true. He said he had never heard the record before, but he knew it was true. Another stated to her friend in her house that she felt the spirit in her house when we were around, and knew that we had been sent from God to her.

I know that as we help people first feel the joy that comes through the redemption of Christ, and then show them how they can have that always, that they will not only come unto Christ, but will refuse to leave.

Elder Low.