"God will either be personally discovered, or remain a mystery."
- President Packard
I've been thinking a lot this week about how much I wish that I could give people desire. A desire to know God, to discover Him! to come to church, to study the scripture, and to pray. I KNOW how happy it would make them and sometimes i find myself wishing i could just do all of the hard work for them so that they could find that happiness! But i cant. God would never take away a persons agency. I can teach and testify and pray and do everything within my own power to help them come unto God, but they have to take the steps toward Him themselves. Even though i want to just throw them over my back and carry them there myself :)
I don't even have words to describe to you how much i love Natalie. I told her this week that its like how one could never understand a mother's love for her child. and she could never understand a missionary's love for our investigators. so much love. we got to see her a lot this week! we had a lesson at the Berrey's home and had her and Anna Berrey and Sam Berrey be the missionaries and we pretended to be the investigators. They taught us about the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ and did SUCH a good job! we were so proud! The next day the young women had a temple trip. Natalie cant go in since she's not a member yet. so we went too so that we could hang out with her out on the ground while all of the other girls went in. we took her into the lobby area and taught her right there about temple work and the covenants we make there. it was powerful, to say the least. Natalie is incredible and absorbs everything. She takes it in with the Spirit and lets him testify to her. She's excited to go herself someday!
Natalie is supposed to be baptized this upcoming Saturday, but we're having some setback with her mom not being supportive. The last thing we want to do is tear their family apart in any way. so if we have to postpone the baptism to help her mom feel more comfortable with it, we will. but we're definitely praying for a miracle and that things will pull through for saturday! Natalie is so strong and has so much faith and i love her.
This weekend was Stake Conference and they reorganized the leadership. Our new Stake President is President Holland from our ward. the youth are really upset about losing their sunday school teacher! it was a good surprise cause they've only been in the ward for less than a year. Elder Gifford Nielson and his wife came and spoke to us too which was a special treat.
On Saturday i went on exchanges to Billerica with Sister Staley. We had a way fun day together and then watched the adult session of stake conference together that night. Elder Nielson was talking and asked if anyone had had any missionary experiences lately. and anna berrey stood up and talked about natalie!!! and then he asked her missionaries to stand and i was so sad that i wasn't there! but s. Bringhurst and s. layton (who was on exchanges there) stood up and i was so proud!
we found a brazilian woman to teach! well im teaching her and s.bringhurst plays with the kids. she's the nanny of a woman that comes to church sometimes and used to investigate. and we went over to see her one day and met Merinalva! i asked her to help me with my portuguese and when i went back to practice with her i explained what we do as missionaries and asked if i could teach her about our church. and she said yes and asked if she could come to our church! ahhhh how I've missed their culture. SO open to the gospel. so ill have to find the closest building with a portuguese group for her to go to!
blast from the past moment! i found out that Cindy (my adorable friend from the Revere ward, the one that called me Miley) got married this week! to Chris, her boyfriend of the time who got baptized just a couple weeks after i left!! SO HAPPY. she's completely done a 180 and i couldn't be happier for her.
We had a lesson at the Edwards with Karina Sheeran again. Her husband couldn't make it this time but we taught her the restoration and gave her a Book of Mormon and committed to reading and praying about it. She had a bad experience with organized religion and doesn't believe that it can remain not corrupt. So we talked about how any religion run by man would have the potential to be corrupted. But that Christ is at the head of our church and directs us, and thats why the doctrine and organization of this church remains pure and cant be tampered with. She seemed to like that a lot :)
Transfer text is this week! ill definitely be getting a new companion because sister Bringhurst goes home. which she is in complete denial about haha. but ill let you know next week what the changes are!
have a great week and i love you all!!