What a great weekend it was with general conference. Now we just have to wait to have the talks printed so we can study them more :)
We met a great new family last night, Tom and Rachel. They both have some Christian background, but are looking for a church to go and feel welcome. They both have felt and recognize the Spirit and our need for it every day. They were open to the message of the Restoration and should be at church this Sunday. They accepted the invitation to be baptized if they know this is true, and committed to read the Book of Mormon. They want a church for their two young boys to grow up in. We're excited about them. We found them knocking doors :)
We taught Maiki this week, and he is very ready for his baptism this weekend! We are super excited for it. We taught him most of the commandments. He told us that there are two major things he loves about this Church: (1) that it teaches us that we should do good, and (2) that it teaches us what good things we should do. And when it comes down to it, that is the purpose of our lives here.
We've been sort of struggling with our other investigators, we weren't able to get any others to watch general conference; and one family has been really struggling. It is a trend that when a prepared individual begins to make steps closer to God, the adversary will make extra notice. It's very annoying, really.
|Tommy and Companion at Mission Leadership Council|
|Entire group at Mission Leadership Council|
We do have a rather ambitious Zone goal of 27 baptisms in the Tacoma West Zone in April. It came from the sum of the ward baptism goals for the 5 wards in the Zone, which has 18 missionaries. We are praying for it all the time, and praying not necessarily that we will have just that many, but that it will make us stretch and expand our vision and increase faith in what we can accomplish when we rely on the Lord.
Some of my "take-aways" from general conference:
-We can be grateful in any season for what we have, even in trials or persecutions
-We should focus on worthiness and purity as we strive to have and keep safe our families
-The world will not glide calmly to the Second Coming of the Savior - we live in perilous times
-The Apostles and Prophets are a source of truth - they teach the pure gospel of Jesus Christ, independent of worldly influences.
-God will not leave us comfortless, He will come to us as we come to Him
-As we do temple work, we are saviors for our ancestors; as we live righteously and set good examples, we are saviors for our posterity.
-NEVER give up on others! Anyone can return to the path of gospel living!
-We should share testimony with our family
-Have daily family prayer and scripture study. I am so sure that if we make an effort to do these little things every day, over time it will have a more lasting effect on our testimony and ultimately our salvation and exaltation that most other things we could do. (Probably only exception are the saving ordinances. We should also do those!!!!!)
-We should be obedient because we love the Savior
-Priesthood power is available to bless all of us.
-We can escape any addiction or sin with the help of Jesus Christ
-Have COURAGE, real courage.
-We should follow-up in missionary work! Keep trying
-Members have a responsibility to read and study Preach My Gospel and invite, at least every 3 months, a friend to meet with the full-time missionaries
-We should not pray to have our burdens lifted, but that God will give us strength to bear them and press forward cheerfully
-Show simple loving kindness to others. The impact of such is more than we think, it extends into the eternities.
-We should recognize others' needs, and then go and help and love them
-The Resurrection of Jesus is a critical principle in the Doctrine of Christ. If that event really did happen, then Jesus was Divine, His teachings are Truth, and every principle of the Gospel is validated, and we have living Apostles and Prophets who are special witnesses of the Resurrection of Christ.
Most of all, I gained a stronger testimony that God lives, He knows us, loves us, and answers our prayers. I had very specific, very personal and private prayers that certain questions and concerns would be addressed this conference. And I testify that God answers prayers and speaks to us through His chosen servants, His prophets. For this reason, my favorite talk was the one from President Packer. It was as if he was speaking directly to me, and it answered my prayer in the right timing and in the right way. I know that for those who take part in the gospel ordinances and make sacred covenants with our Father in Heaven, that no blessing will be withheld. In this life we might be unsure of what may come, but for those who embrace the gospel, all blessings will come. It will all be right in the end.
This Sunday is the Lakewood musical fireside!!! I am excited to go back and see members, converts, and investigators hopefully :) It's April 13th at 7:00 pm.
And the following week is the mission temple trips!!!! AHHH!!! So excited.
|Tommy at the Port Angeles Missionary Musical Fireside - He is the conductor|
|Entire Missionary Choir at Port Angeles Musical Fireside|
Some more updates on past areas: I heard at our meeting Friday that Saira and Thomas from Steilacoom are to be baptized on the 19th!!!! And there was an unbaptized boy from a family in Bremerton who we were always trying to see, Lucas, and he was just baptized this weekend. Also baptized was a woman named Maria that now lives in Lakewood, but Elder Schaffner and I knocked her door the first night Elder Schaffner was in the mission! They were a part member family, but now they're a full member family. :) yay missionary work!!
Scriptures: (sorry I've been slakcing) 1 Timothy 1:12 - I am grateful to be counted one worthy to represent the Lord
D&C 9:8-9 - we can ask God what is right and he will cause us to feel what is right, lead us to truth.
D&C 1:39 - the words we heard this weekend are the words of Christ! They are the same.