I hope you all had a happy and safe New Year's! We went to a party with all the older people in the ward and it was a lot of fun!
We got another new investigator this week! His name is Herve, and he is Vanessa's brother. They both have met with missionaries before and come to church and they've seen the Restoration movie which is super awesome! He has such strong faith and he committed to read the Book of Mormon and pray about it! We also got to see Carmen and Lorena and we taught the Plan of Salvation. Lorena has been reading the Book of Mormon everyday! She's doing so awesome! And Carmen has been praying!
I read this super awesome article this week called "Becoming Perfect in Christ." It's super great and you should definitely read it! https://www.lds.org/ensign/2014/07/young-adults/becoming-perfect-in-christ?lang=eng
I can't remember if I shared this last week or not, but there's a line in the hymn "Come Let us Anew" that I really like. It says, "Our talents improve by the patience of hope and the labor of love." I love that! I've been working a lot on loving others and I've noticed that my listening skills have gotten a lot better!
We've been sharing this spiritual message about Samuel the Lamenite with a lot of people this week, and I thought I'd share it with you too. Samuel the Lamenite was asked by Heavenly Father to tell people that Christ was going to come and they needed to prepare themselves spiritually (Helaman 13:1-5). The people wouldn't listen to Samuel, so he got up on the city wall. Then people started throwing things at him and shooting arrows at him, but he wasn't hurt, because he had the Spirit of the Lord with him (Helaman 16:2). There are spiritual arrows that are shot at us everyday, and I think the biggest ones are doubt and fear. But we can always pray to Heavenly Father for the strength and protection we need to stand strong and overcome our fears and doubts and the doubts of others.
There's this awesome section in Preach My Gospel and praying with faith and there's this really cool quote by President Hinckley. "Every morning . . . , missionaries should get on their knees and plead with the Lord to loosen their tongues and speak through them to the blessing of those they will be teaching. If they will do this, a new light will come into their lives. There will be greater enthusiasm for the work. They will come to know that in a very real sense, they are servants of the Lord speaking in His behalf. They will find a different response from those they teach. As they do so by the Spirit, their investigators will respond under the influence of the same Spirit." What sticks out to me the most is that if missionaries pray with faith, there will be greater enthusiasm for the work. I love being a missionary and I love what we do, but sometimes I feel like I'm just going through the motions. But this past week I've been trying to pray with more faith, and I've found that I'm a lot more focused on the work. There is so much power in prayer! And when we pray for specific things, we get specific blessings!
This week we got to go to two baptisms! There was one a convert baptism on Saturday for the Bedford ward, and then there was a 8-year-old baptism in our ward yesterday. The spirit is so strong at baptisms! It's so awesome! One of the Elders gave a talk on the Holy Ghost at the baptism on Saturday. And he said something that I really love. He said that if we can feel the Holy Ghost with us, then we know that the Atonement is working in our lives. I've never heard it said like that before, but it makes so much sense and I love it!
I read Moroni 7:41 this week, and I love this scripture so much! It says, "And what is it that ye shall hope for? Behold I say unto you that ye shall have hope through the atonement of Christ and the power of his resurrection, to be raised unto life eternal, and this because of your faith in him according to the promise." The Atonement gives us so much hope! Hope that we can be clean and become better, hope that we will live again. And it's all because of our faith! When we have faith, it motivates us to use the Atonement, and we truly can become better and more like Christ.
Time's running up, so I gotta get going! I love you all and hope you have a great week!
Love, Sister Harper