Contact Elder Tommy Webber

Contact Elder Tommy Webber

Washington Tacoma Mission
4007 Bridgeport Way West, Suite D
Tacoma, WA 98466-4330

Monday, September 16, 2013

Raymond Chronicles: Endurance, Joy in Converts, and Hastening


I've had another great week. It's hard not to when I get to be a missionary. Sometimes when we talk to people and tell them about what we do, and that it's for 2 years and we have no TV/internet/blah blah, they feel bad for us. They think it's something we have to do. I have been assuring them that we get to do it! Being a missionary is the best thing ever because you are always happy, and then when you're not happy you realize, oh wait, I'm actually still happy!

One example of this is early in this week. This part is about endurance. On Monday night we called our investigator, Mia. I've told you a little bit about her. She was almost baptized twice with her son who's 15. We've taught her all the lessons twice. She's the one from China. Well she hadn't been to church in 2 weeks, and we couldn't reach her by phone, she wouldn't pick up. She lives in a woman's shelter so we can't stop by. We were very worried. On Monday we finally reached her and she wouldn't agree to meet with us to talk about things. She said she might be moving, and was very vague, saying she was busy and tired and then she pretty much hung up. Elder Green and I were really bummed and we said a lot of prayers for her. We tried to call again and again. We reached her Saturday night and heard that she is going through a lot of heavy trials and is embarrassed to meet with us or come to church. I told her of our love and concern for her and her son, and did the best I could to explain how Heavenly Father will make all her trials work out OK if she does her best to live the gospel. It was very intense. She said OK and we waited at church the next day. She didn't come.

This is the catch and I believe this is very important. I've been thinking about this a lot this week. Because of this situation, I am sad. But it is an outside sadness, it is more from concern and worry for others, and borne of love. This kind of sadness cannot penetrate the inward, replenishing, refreshing joy of personal gospel living. Of inward righteousness and a clear conscience as I am doing my best to keep the commandments and serve others. My happiness in this regard is dependent solely upon my agency. Other's happiness is dependent upon their agency. When both of us use our agency the right way, we share an inward and outward joy that grows. So although I am sad to see others, whom I love, falter, I am still happy. It sustains me :)

Now about that "shared" joy. I am so so happy with our recent converts, Terry and Kris's family. They are both doing so great! Both of them haven't missed a day of church. They both are continuing to grow in the gospel by personal/family scripture study and prayer! Yes!!!! Terry now has a place to live (he got kicked out of his little apartment) and he's living in his camper on the property of one of the members. He doesn't mind though, he has the best attitude. The member is going to help him and nourish him in the gospel. And!!! This is the best part. Kris's family started school. Vanessa is enrolled. They found jobs plus student loans and they are now renting out a home from another member in the ward. The same members that we live with!! Yes, that's right, Kris's family are now our neighbors :D :D :D how awesome is that!? The members we live with have a third building (small home) on their property. We see Kris's family every morning and night when we leave or come home. They fed us dinner on Saturday and we ate on a spare mattress because they don't have a table yet, but they are so unbelievably grateful. I love them so much. Now I'm starting to tear up a little, ha ha. They just love the gospel. They love each other, and they love us. In about one month, their lives are turned around 180 degrees. This is what it is all about. This Sunday, Kris should be able to ordain his sons to the Aaronic Priesthood. They each make me happy every day.

Finally, we had a wonderful meeting on Tuesday in Olympia. It consisted of the ward councils from 4 stakes in the area. We had an Area Seventy there, Elder Bussey. And President and Sister Weaver. It was a fantastic training on hastening the work (D&C 88:73). He told us about the historic announcement almost a year ago and that "It's time." I am so excited about missionary work. It is getting bigger and bigger and faster and faster. He said they should reach 100,000 missionaries by the end of the year!!!! And then it would settle back to around 80,000 / 90,000.

Scripture: D&C 42:14

Love, Elder Webber

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