My companion is Sister Gaastra, she is from New Zealand! She has been out for just three months, so I am what we call her "greenie buster". In the first three months of your mission, you are considered "green", another term for "fresh off the boat". So the companion after your trainer is your greenie buster, because they bust you of being a newbie! She and her trainer were building member trust and helping the members know that we are there to help them, and that we will work hard to help their friends come unto Christ. Now that the members are on board, we are working hard to find, teach, and baptize people!
We had an incredible lesson yesterday. This man's wife is a member and has gone through the temple, but he has not been baptized. He said that he used to be a mean man, but finally he found Christ. He joined a Christian church when he was in his 20's. He has changed so much over the years and has seen many miracles brought forth by God's hand. He believes in the Bible, and has had so many good examples in his life, especially his wife, who taught him about the gospel. He made a promise to an aunt that he would join the church, but he is not sure that it is the right step for him now. He is afraid that being baptized again would discount all that he has learned and understood in his own journey, and he is not sure that the Book of Mormon is true. We told him that the whole reason why he went on that journey and invited Christ into his life was to prepare him for this day, to be baptized into His true church. We told him that we don't want to take anything away from what he has already learned, we just want to add on and increase his understanding.
His friend and neighbor, who came with us to the lesson, asked him if he has prayed when he reads the Book of Mormon. He said no! We explained to him that we can not know of spiritual truths without prayer, we need to ask God if these things are true! The Book of Mormon is not a fictitious novel we read for fun, it is the word of God spoken by prophets. If we want to know that it is true, we need to ask God himself! He said that no one had ever told him that! He prays when he reads the Bible, but has never done it for the Book of Mormon. It was so crazy to think that this one little thing has been hindering his progress. We are so excited to help him learn and gain a testimony and understanding for himself that the Book of Mormon is true and that this is the true church of Jesus Christ established on the earth.
I love being a missionary, and I am so grateful to continually see the change in people's lives as they make a place in their heart for the word of God, and then they help that seed that has been planted to grow. It has been my favorite thing about my mission, to see people change.
I love this gospel! I know it is true, and I want every one to have a chance to feel the joy that I have experienced as I follow my Savior Jesus Christ.
I love you all, and I hope you're smiling!