Monday, April 8, 2013

General Conference 4/08/2013

  Dear Everyone,   

    Good morning wonderful family how are you doing???  I hope you all had a great week.  I sure did.  This weekend has been highly anticipated for me for like a month now.  I love conference so much.  What a great time to hear the words of the Lord given through prophets and apostles.  I received answers to many of my personal questions and it was an incredibly uplifting weekend for me personally.  Apart from that, we had a good, but slow week.  2 weeks ago, was the Spring Break for the universities around here, and last week, the school districts were on Spring Break, so everybody was out of town, or busy. 
     First of all, I love being in Spokane.  The Five Mile Prairie ward and the YSA ward are so great.  The members here are way supportive and really want to help.  I don't think I talked about my new companion last week, his name is Elder Cisternas, from Orem Utah.  He lives right by the Linden border, so kind of opposite of where we live.  It's kind of weird having a companion from the same city as you because everyone, and I mean everyone, asks if we knew each other back home.  I love him and his dedication to obedience. 
     Like I said, many people were out of town this week or busy, so we did not have very many lessons.  We spend the great majority of our time looking through lists for part member families, and prospective elders, and didn't really find much success in that as of yet.  We were able to visit with a lady named Heather, one of our investigators who is coming so close to baptism.  She has been meeting with missionaries on and off for a couple years it sounds now, but has only recently taken a real interest in actually joining the church.  She is pretty apprehensive about baptism still, however, because she feels she needs to know more about the church, scriptures and the doctrine.  She watched both Sunday sessions of conference and they really helped her out a lot.  We are teaching her on Tuesday and are likely going to talk about some principles on Elder Hollands talk.
     We met with a guy named Kevin, who is the husband of a less active member of the church.  He himself doesn't really have a faith in God, says he feels there is a greater power, but doesn't know what it is.  He didn't really have positive experiences with the missionaries in the past, because they would just hang out at their place, so I guess it's been hard for the missionaries to be able to gain his trust again.  We did get a lesson in with him though and taught him prayer and patience.  He is committed to praying for a testimony that God exists, and cares about him. 
     Yesterday night we had a great experience with a church tour.  Like I said before, it was a slower week, as well as the week before, and we hadn't had any luck with finding new people to teach.  It has been a trial for me personally because finding people had been pretty easy for us in Moses Lake and West Terrace.  It's been like a finding drought for us.  We have been praying and searching to find somebody who is prepared to hear the gospel, and our prayers were answered yesterday.  We have been trying to contact a referral, Skyler, for a couple weeks now and never caught him home.  Finally, in between sessions of conference, we were able to contact him.  He was contacted by sister missionaries on a bus stop, has Baptist background and told them we could come by.  We talked to him a bit about the church and invited him on a church tour that night, which he accepted.  We brought our WML with us and had an incredible tour.  As we talked about the tour, he said that he really did feel something different as we went into the chapel, and he liked the way he felt.  He mentioned that all he had learned were things that made sense to him, so we invited him to be baptized on May 11, which he accepted.  Keep him in your prayers, because he has such great potential and is a great guy. 
     That's about all of the investigators we taught last week.  I am so thankful to be in this mission and for the council of our mission president.  We have been emphasizing so much these last few months on keeping things simple and powerful, and relating everything we do to baptism and our purpose.  It has been some very successful months as we have applied these teachings and been obedient to his council.  I would just like to end with some insight that I learned from conference.  With the announcement of the missionary change, the work has truly hastened.  The work is not hastening in the church alone, but outside the church as well.  God is preparing the hearts and minds of many people to receive the Gospel of Jesus Christ and as we do our part to prepare ourselves, we can all be a part of the hastening. 1 peter 3:15 stuck out to me because it was mentioned at least 3 times in conference.  I know this gospel is real, the work is really hastening.  As we live the gospel, people will ask about the hope which is in us, and we can prepare ourselves to give that answer to them and do our part.  I love you all and hope you have a great week=)

Elder Stacey

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