Monday, September 17, 2012

email: September 17, 2012

This week has been full of ups and downs. Elder Johnson came down the Strep throat so we have been battling that all this week. Even though it wasn't the most productive week, we did get a lot done. I spent most of the week with Elder Tukuafu from Tonga, making visits and appointments. He is the funniest Elder EVER! Even though I wanted to be out with Johnson, it was fun spending time with him.

Carol is making such good progress. We had a lesson with her and Robert at one of her co-workers home that is in our ward. We taught about the Plan of Salvation and answered a lot of Carol's questions. And the most amazing thing is that Robert actually participated and was active in the discussion. When I bore my testimony about the power of His plan, I couldn't stop the tears from coming when I talked about Grandpa Tonini and how I struggled with him passing. But the knowledge that we have brings so much comfort. I blamed my soft side on Mom and Dad so that everyone didn't think I was a lame missionary!

We then taught Victor's sister, Tina on Tuesday. Before I went into the lesson, I got this impression that this was her time to get baptized and I had to ask her to make that commitment. We taught about the Restoration of the Church and how we can know the truth of all things. We invited her to baptism but she was hesitant at first. Victor then came in and bore his testimony and challenged her again to be baptized on October 13th. The craziest thing is that October 13th was the same date that I had in my mind for her to be baptized. This time, she accepted it and will be working towards getting ready. She has already read up to 14th chapter in 1 Nephi! We meet with her twice a week so she will be ready and get into the water with Victor to have him baptize her :).

On Wednesday, I went with Victor to have another lesson with a family we just got as investigators. They were originally with the Spanish elders but they want to learn in English so we got them to teach. Again, I got the impression that they needed to be invited to be baptized that lesson. We taught about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and then invited the whole family to be baptized. Sylvia, the mother, said that this decision will be a family decision; they won't get baptized if only the entire family does it. We left them with the challenge to pray as a family and read so that they can know if this is what they need to do. We will meet with them on Wednesday so we will see how they are doing.

Thursday, we had a General Authority come speak to us! Elder Paul B.Pieper came to see our mission. I learned so much from him. We need to so SEEK the elect and have them come into the waters of baptism. Don't waste your time with the others, find the elect. He also gave an idea to have the investigators answer some of their questions by themselves. I thought that was an awesome idea! He also said something that seriously brought me to tears. At first, he ripped us for not being the best missionaries we could be. He then told us that Christ really does love us, that He Himself told him that. I have never heard something that spiritual directed towards me. You know some of the hardships that I have had to over come lately and I have felt very alone... That sentence gave me such great hope and really showed me that my Savior loves me! Just talking about it again is bringing me to tears... That experience is something I will never forget.

Johnson was pretty sick again on Friday so we took it easy. We went and tried to find him a bike though with Robert. We went to multiple places looking for one in his budget. We couldn't find one so we snuck into Sam's Club for one last ditch try to find one. We didn't find one there but we ran into a member who had a bike he would give to him. He told us it was a Liahona (a missionary brand bike) and so we went and got it that night. Come to find out, it was an old Trek mountain bike! It is super sick! He got it all fixed up so we are good to go out and work. I love the tender mercies that Lord gives to His servants.

Saturday was the Spud Derby! It was our ward activity that all of Robert's family went to. We took a potato, carved it, put wheels on it and raced it down the pinewood derby track. Robert and I took it wayyyy to seriously. There was no limit so we were using his drill and screws and bolts, the whole nine yards! We carved it into a truck and called it Spud Diesel. And it took first place! It was cool, I have a video of it running the track :). Carol felt very at home with everyone, which was sooo good. She is starting to feel the fellowship of the ward, which will be key for her!

Sunday came and Carol showed up to church by herself! Robert is working up in Pebble Beach so it was just her. It was the primary program so I got to see all of my primary kids get up and speak :). This ward seriously feels like my home ward, I have been here for so long! We then had a good lesson in Sunday School which I taught. Carol actually shared two experiences that she had with the Holy Ghost. She loved it, and is super excited about Church. She is asking many questions, which is a good thing, so that she will be ready for baptism on the 29th.

God is such a loving God and I feel so humble to be His servant. Even though I am not perfect, I know that He loves me and wants me to keep working hard. When I feel discouraged about anything, I know who to turn to. When the going gets tough, just work harder. My Father in Heaven loves me and He loves each and every one of y'all personally. I know that to be true because I get to feel that love that He has for His children every day of my missionary service. I love each and every one of y'all and miss y'all dearly. Hope to hear from you soon.

Elder Tonini

No comments:

Post a Comment