Where do I even begin, my week has been so good! Maybe for some exciting news, Elder Dallin H. Oaks came to the Canada Toronto Mission and spoke to us on Saturday! I was so privileged to sit in the front row and listen to an apostle speak. IT WAS AMAZING! I wanted to share some brief notes that I loved from this special event.
*Who am I? I AM a servant of Christ! I need to be a 'FULL TIME' missionary. "It isn't your mission; it is His mission that you are serving for Him. So you do His work, His way on His timetable." (Elder Oaks) This is just one thing that stood out to me and has changed my view even more about the opportunity I have here in his vineyard to do His work. I truly am so grateful I have the opportunity of a lifetime to serve my Savior, Jesus Christ, and to teach His gospel in Canada. I LOVE MY MISSION! J I could go on and on about Elder Oaks and this meeting. It was a meeting that I will never forget and I was so blessed to shake his hand and hear inspiring words from an apostle.
We were also privileged to hear from Elder Kacher of the North America Northeast Area and Elder Allard, Area Seventy with Family History. He said, “I would like to say to each of you, hold onto everything that you have that is good! The gospel is so joyful. Hold onto the light in which you have and seek out even more!” I love that!
While at the 'new members, returning members, and investigators' meeting with Elder Oaks, I was able to have a really sweet moment, seeing a glimpse of the past six months while on my mission. While at the meeting, Sister Shurtliff (my first companion with me in London) and I were able to talk to Pamala (she was the native lady) and is planning on getting baptized! She told us what a huge impact we had on her and helped her in ways we didn’t even know! I was able to talk to Johan (from Whitby) and he is doing well and was so happy to see me. I was able to see Ruby (our current investigator we are helping prepare for baptism) and several others. I was able to see a lot of people there that I had the chance to teach. I never knew what impact I had on people until that meeting. Even though I haven't been able to be at a baptism, it gives me comfort that everything that Heavenly Father is helping me with is helping others come closer to Christ. It was a wonderful experience and brought me so much joy knowing that I am in the service of the Lord.
It was a great week here in Ajax! First, Ruby (our investigator who I talked about in the middle of December) called us and wanted us to begin teaching yet again. We went over and I really just poured my heart to her. We then shared the Restoration DVD and talked about it. It was a really neat experience. Her eyes were washed from the mud and she was able to see the light of the gospel. She understands why it was Joseph Smith and has even gained a better appreciation for him. We invited her to be baptized and she said YES! She set a goal of February 21st for her baptism. It was such a strong lesson and what was even more amazing was that she was able to attend the meeting with Elder Oaks. He also spoke to new members of the church, returned members and investigators who are planning to be baptized. We were able to attend that meeting too! She heard some things that stood out to her that she really liked and she said she enjoyed the experience. I am so excited to help her prepare for baptism and pray we will do all we can to help her achieve her goal!
Louis and Faye are doing amazing! We taught them all 5 lessons! Their next step is meeting with the bishop next week to be able to get their patriarchal blessing soon! J We are helping them right now in preparing a name for the temple to do baptisms for the dead, which will be Faye's mom and Louis already has names! They are doing amazing!
I wanted to share of a neat experience that I had last week with prayer. It was after daily planning one night and I was spiritually, physically, and mentally drained. It was a rough day and I was beginning to be filled with mix emotions. Finding myself alone (while my companion was in the washroom), I knelt down on the floor next to our fireplace and began my fervent prayer. It was a vocal prayer to my Heavenly Father. I poured out my heart, what I was feeling, my weaknesses, my concerns, inadequacy, and feelings I just needed to get rid of. After my long, heartfelt prayer, I looked next to me--expecting my companion to be there, because I felt someone putting their arm over me while I prayed. I began to cry, realizing that I felt Christ's presence kneeling next to me as I was kneeling and offering this sincere prayer to my Heavenly Father. I could feel the spirit telling me that he was saying, "It's okay, I'm here. You are doing all you can, for I am with you always." It was a tender experience that I was able to have with my Heavenly Father.
The gospel brings us eternal joy and I am so grateful for the opportunity that I have to be an instrument in bringing others closer to Christ. I feel so much Joy in sharing the gospel. It’s true, all of it! I know our God is a living, loving Father in Heaven who, because He loves us, sent His Son, Jesus Christ to atone for the sins of the world so that we may, through living the Gospel of Jesus Christ, be able to return to His presence with our families, in peace and joy, for eternity! I know that these things are true because I have read the evidence of this restored Gospel, the Book of Mormon, and I have prayed and asked my Father if it is true, and He has witnessed it to me by the power of the Holy Ghost, It is true, I know it to be! How GRATEFUL I am for this knowledge! How great is our calling to share that, the restored Gospel that is upon the Earth at this time! Let us share it with all!!
Until next time...