Well this week was another great week here in the GREAT Columbus Ohio mission. It was full of ups and downs but what is life if it does not change. I would hate a constant life. The trials and sorrows of this life make the blessings and joys even better.
Well I learned some important lessons this week. The lessons were don't give up, following the Spirit, and a combination of the two. Don't give up following the Spirit.
Lately we have been really focusing on what are mission president calls the Lists. Basically part member families, perspective elders, unbaptized children of record, and less active. We have seen some great success with these people. But there were 2 families in particular from these lists that we and the ward council have been focusing on for the past 3 weeks. And we have not been able to see any of them till this past week. One was a member that we have been trying to see. We would go there about every other day to every three days. Each time she was not home or said try later or was sick. Well we tried this week and she let us in and we talked to her. She then signed up on the meal calendar and wanted us to come back again. Another family is a recent convert family that we have been working on as a ward council. Well we have tried them a lot as well. They finally answered and talked to us in their home. Then she too signed up for feeding us! It was so nice to see them! I learned that we can never give up and till them tell you to leave them alone! The Lord never gives up on the one. Giving up shows weakness.
Next I learned the importance of the Spirit. There have been a few times on my mission where I have felt led to certain places for certain people. Which has been so cool! But I have also been really trying to focus on teaching by the Spirit. I believe there is a difference between, teaching, teaching with the Spirit, and teaching by the spirit. It is a good, better, best pattern. It is good to teach and inform others. It is better to teach with the Spirit so that the investigator can feel the Spirit and it can testify to them of the truthfulness. But teaching by the Spirit is the best way. Teaching by the Spirit means that your words are directly from the Spirit. That not only is your investigator feeling the Spirit, but that through the Spirit you can discern their thoughts and desires as Ammon did. That you can, by the Spirit, say exactly what they need to hear. There is a slight difference between teaching with the Spirit and teaching by the Spirit, but this difference is so important. I had two experiences with teaching by the Spirit. One was I gave a few blessings this past week and one was to a sister in our mission. As I finished the blessing I knew that none of those words I spoke were mine but were all from the Spirit. Well the sister told right after that she was a little freaked out cause she felt like I knew her whole entire life just by the words I spoke by the Spirit. She heard what she needed to hear from her Father in Heaven through me by the Spirit. The second experience was while teaching an investigator, the Spirit prompted me to speak. Well I did not know what I was suppose to speak about, but I trusted in the Lord and I spoke by the Spirit and said things I would have not thought to say.Sure I started off sounding crazy and it sounded a little bit like a ramble but when I focused on what the Spirit wanted me to say I was able to speak by the Spirit. We always need to be living life by the Spirit.
Lasting is not giving up on the Spirit. There are many difficulties that each missionary personally goes through. One of those difficulties is finding out how the Spirit works through them. Now with this one question many more questions follow. We as missionaries ask ourselves, "was that the spirit or just my own thought?" "Am I worthy/good enough of a missionary to have the Spirit with me?" and many more questions. But we can not give up on trying to find the Spirit in our daily lives. We need to trust in the Lord and continue. The Spirit is just a taste of the joy of eternal life and we cannot give up on finding out how to recognize that Spirit. We need to be able to receive revelation for ourselves and others we have stewardship over. Revelation is needed for salvation. Don't give up!
Well life is so good here! I am loving Ohio! It is getting a little chilly here every now and then which means only one thing. FALL!! Well you guys are awesome and I love yall!!