Phoenix Arizona Temple

Phoenix Arizona Temple

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

August 26, 2013

I brought my journal with me so I could come up with something better to write you this week! Sheesh! (Speaking of my journal, I'm running out of pages again :) Can I please get another one? You've gotten me a red and blue one so far if you want to surprise me with a new color :) Also, I was wondering if it isn't too much to ask if you could send me 2? I want to give one to Sister Connell, but it's okay if not! Thanks and love you!) Well! Let me tell you about Tuesday :) This story is pretty cool! So, one of our members has a friend named Kayla who said she was interested in learning about the Church! So we set up a lunch appointment for Tuesday at Subway...mmmm Subway :) Anyway, she asked if she could bring her dad, and we're thinking, sweet! Two investigators in a day! (Not that we could teach her dad anyway, but that's not the point). We're waiting for them to come and everything, then when they get there they ask if we want to sit outside or inside. We say, outside is fine, and they sit down. Umm... "Did you want to eat anything?" No they did not. That's a pretty weird lunch appointment if you ask me. I was excited about Subway! Okay, okay back to the story. So they sit down and pull out a couple of different copies and versions of the Bible. Uh oh. We were thinking we would introduce ourselves, do some How To Begin Teaching (page 176 of Preach My Gospel, just some get-to-know-you get-to-know-us pointers) and talk a little bit about the beginning of the first lesson. No, no, they were prepared for an intense discussion. ALRIGHT! This is how it went. Kayla wanted to learn more about the Church and her dad came out of obligation as the head of the household to see what his daughter is getting herself into, essentially. What happened was some back and forth Bible...well I wouldn't say bashing...but it was kind of like polite, calm bashing. I pulled out the Book of Mormon and they would have none of that, so we were going back and forth in the Bible. It was crazy! They were trying to prove in Ephesians and 2 Timothy and Titus about how works are in vain and only by God' grace will we be saved. True, but James says faith without works is dead. How can we have faith if we don't do good works? I wasn't entirely prepared for that one so I had to let it go, but I've been studying grace versus works and have some SOLID scriptures to back myself up next time! Anyway, this is where it got CRAZY! So, he was trying to prove to us in Galatians how there are no prophets after Christ and if they claim to preach His word and that they are prophets than they are actually anti-Christs. he was actually getting a tad heated when he started talking about Joseph Smith (he brought the big guy up by the way). I had been studying the evidences of the Restoration in the Book of Mormon and I had an awesome experience with 2 Nephi 27 which refers to Isaiah 29. In my personal study a few days prior, I had decided to read that chapter in Isaiah. It didn't make a whole lot of sense. Then I read 2 Nephi 26 and 27 and then went back to Isaiah 29 and it made clear sense! In my "banter" with Kayla's dad, I decided to be brave and show him that in Isaiah, it prophesies of Joseph Smith, the Book of Mormon, and the Restoration. I. CONFOUNDED. HIM. It was AWESOME! He said, "that's interesting, I'll have to study that, mind if I say a closing prayer?" Then he prayed and got in his van real quick :) Yep, it was pretty cool. We also got a great new investigator this week! Her name is Alex and she's really knowledgeable in the LDS Church because she was taken to Church with her grandpa as a little girl but isn't baptized :) She's amazing! She came to Church with us yesterday and we're really excited about teaching her :) Sooooo.. to answer some of your questions. Yes, I am on Facebook! What the!? Anyway, I'm to use it for missionary purposes only, so for communication with friends and family on matters that aren't gospel related, writing letters and emails is the standard. But! I can of course add people as friends, whoever, around the whole world! So your friend can add me if she wants. In a situation where I could be strengthening people at home, I can teach them. For example, any non-member friends that I have who want to learn about the Church or any less-active friends who need help coming back. There's an Elder in my mission who has a non-member father who he has been TEACHING on Facebook with his returned missionary BROTHER. There are some limits to what I can do, but no limits at all when it comes to sharing the gospel. One Elder has a page that he created for his family to share their studies together so he can help prepare his younger siblings for their missions. But this isn't a way to be sneaky and talk more, as long as there is a righteous objective and it helps me fulfill my purpose as a missionary, everything is game! :) Yes I am getting along great with my companion :) She's awesome! And hilarious. She keeps asking me about my family and wants to meet Kelly way bad because she feels like they would be great friends :) There hasn't been any problems with the Elders. We've all been able to work together just fine :) I've grown so much in the past week, it's ridiculous. I have been trying to work on my faith, trying to be better at relying wholly on the Lord and it has been AMAZING my experiences. There have been times where my natural instinct and common sense would cause me to doubt, but as I've been focusing on my faith, I've been moving forward anyway and seeing such miracles. Small miracles like being able to find the home of someone who invited us to dinner when we were a half hour late and had forgotten the map at home. Other miracles like studying something, completely unplanned and led by the Spirit, to have it reiterated in Zone Conference and over and over again during my day. And big miracles like finding Alex and having her come to Church with us. Something I've learned about miracles is that it's a lot like when people don't know how to recognize the Spirit. I've heard pretty much everyone I know tell me that now or previously they had struggled to learn the difference between their own thoughts and the promptings of the Spirit. The answer is, if it's righteous, IT IS FROM THE SPIRIT, and that it doesn't matter anyway. The same thing is true about miracles! It's so easy to say, "oh that was a coincidence" or to just disregard the things that happen that commonly shouldn't happen. EVERYTHING IS A MIRACLE!! Small, big, normal-seeming...I have learned to recognize the MIRACLES that happen in my life and that is what has helped my faith to grow and to trust God. I shouldn't be able to do (this or that), but if I pray for it and have full faith in it, it will happen. End of story. Well, that's my wisdom for today. I hope you all have a great week! It's been raining like CRAZY here lately! I love it :) LOVE YOU! -Kady

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