The first part of this week wasn’t very exciting. I spent the first couple of days at home reading the entire Book of Mormon while my companion was sick in bed with the flu. I know that he was actually sick; not just because he was throwing up all day, but because he was willing to reschedule an appointment we had to teach a bikini model.
When we arrived at the Bikini model’s home later in the week, she informed us that she had read all of 1st and 2nd Nephi, and that there was no doubt in her mind that “the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the one and true church.” Hopefully I will be here when she is baptized. I might be transferred in 3 weeks. It would be cool to say that I baptized a bikini model on my mission. The other missionaries in our District wanted in on teaching our bikini model. Apparently Elder Vidal tried to lay claim on her, arguing that she technically lived in his area. Elder Miles had to break the bad news to him that she was referred to us by a family in our ward. It was like watching a father advising his young son that he could not help him because what daddy was doing is work for grown ups. [Notice how Jake never even mentions her by name… only refers to her as “the bikini model.” Nice Jake!]
This week we had a few great experiences…
This week I was able to recognize how Heavenly Father often gives us trials to afford us the opportunity to help strengthen those Father places in our path. A member of our Ward here in Xela introduced me to a family who was struggling to raise a daughter with special needs. I was able to draw from my experiences with my sister Leah to help this family recognize how fortunate they are that Heavenly Father entrusted them with one of His special spirits.
But probably the most note-worthy thing that happened during the week was when I found out that Louis had the courage necessary to take the first step in helping his family be an eternal family one day, by getting baptized; despite his mother’s disapproval. That must have been a challenging test of his faith not having family support. I pray that his mother will come around one day, after seeing the change in her son’s life.
Updates on some of the families we are working with:
Do you recall the Lopez family? They are the part-member family on whom we felt inspired through the Spirit to focus during “the Family Plan” in Ward Council. They are the parents of Estelita, and the ones who had a falling out with some past missionary, the day before they were scheduled to be baptized. Anyway…Estelita invited us over for Family Home Evening this week, where her parents, on their own, brought up the importance of being baptized. In essence, they challenged themselves to be baptized. We just have to help them achieve that goal.
On Saturday we worked with that Catholic family who had committed to reading all of 3rd Nephi. If you recall, during a recent discussion, they committed us to study and pray about the trinity. After keeping their commitment to read 3rd Nephi, they ended up calling us back, wondering if we were ever going to come back and visit them. They expressed an interest in learning more. Elder Miles had written them off at first, and never set another appointment with them, thinking that they were not progressing. It just goes to show that the Book of Mormon is the key. Once you read it, the Spirit confirms the truth, and you can’t deny it.
Oh, by the way… we found out why one of our other investigator families didn’t make it to Conference. Apparently the bus driver of the bus the got on in that morning was shot, causing the bus to crash. Due to the injuries they received from the crash, they were unable to make it to Conference. I guess I will give them a pass. Wow!
I hope that was along enough email to give you guys a good image of what is going down here in Xela. I cannot wait to hear from you guys more next week. I hope you guys can feel that I am praying for you too, because I am defiantly feeling your prayers here in Xela.
Love you guys, Jake