Tuesday, November 11, 2008

The Conversion Process

Dear Family,
….some FANTASTIC news!! We have 3 people who have committed to baptism, and a good chance of at least 1 more this week!!!! It will be a little while before they are actually baptized, but all we have to do is set a date with each one and we're all set. The first one is an 18-year-old kid named Joey Riddle. He's a real nice guy, but he's really quiet so you have to ask him a lot of questions. He is being fellowshipped by a family in our ward whom he spends a lot of time with. We're going to sit down just with him this week and see how prepared he is. The second one is Bernard Taylor, 29, who the other Hamilton elders saw walking on the sidewalk while they were out and about. It has been nothing short of a miracle. He lives in our area, and we were able to teach him 3 days in a row this past week. From our first appointment with him, he made it clear that he has been trying to do what's right in life and find answers to questions that have been bothering him for a while. We cannot believe how prepared he is to make these changes in his life, and you can hear the sincerity in his voice. He actually cried during our first lesson, and expressed to us that this is exactly what he's been looking for. He had no idea that God had a plan just for him, and is very impressed by the Book of Mormon. We left him a DVD copy of "The Restoration" and he watched it as soon as we left. He told us that he was really surprised that Joseph Smith had the same questions as he does. We didn't even have to extend a baptismal commitment to him, as he asked us straight up what he needs to do in order to get baptized. He also told us that he really needs to find a job so that he can pay the rent for his place and also get his divorce papers finalized. He has another girl that he plans to marry but has to wait until those papers go through. Oh yes, and that's not all. He spotted the picture of the Mt. Timpanogos Temple on my binder and asked what it was all about. I told him, and he got real excited and said that was where he wanted to marry his wife!!!! I've been pretty much flying high this past week, and he had a lot to with that. Make sure you pray for him as well to find a job, and also to receive a spiritual confirmation that this Church is true. He believes that it is, but has yet to pray specifically for that witness. I know he will get it because he is so humble and willing to change. So, the third person that wants to be baptized is an 11-year-old named LaNashia (not sure about the spelling) who lives with her grandma who is a member that we visit every week. We had no idea that she hadn't been baptized yet, since she comes to Church on a regular basis. Anyway, she told us this was something that she wanted, so we're going to teach her the lessons twice a week starting tomorrow, and hopefully set a date around the beginning of December. We were also thrilled to see one of our investigators at Church yesterday for the first time. Her name is Linda Neff, and she is a very smart lady and really willing to learn. She is kind of shy, so we had to earn her trust at first, but everything is just dandy now. She was actually investigating the Church years ago, but her family convinced her to stop taking the lessons for a while. I had been here about 3 weeks when we received a call from Sis. Hobbs (a member of our ward who helps us out a lot and is fellowshipping Linda) that Linda had consented to take the lessons again. She just finished reading the Book of Mormon on her own, and as I mentioned, she was at Church yesterday for the first time. She partook of the sacrament and was reverently pondering its significance. We informed Bishop Hazelton prior to sacrament meeting that she would be there, and so when he announced the sacrament hymn and all that other stuff, he explained why we partook of the bread and water and it's significance. I know that Linda understood it, and so our plan this week is to commit her to baptism and prepare her for it around the beginning of December as well. So to sum it all up, I have been thanking the Lord every night for the success we've been having and also praying on behalf of each of our investigators. I am glad that you are willing to pray for them also; I would really love if you would do that! I really don't like asking for too much, and I know I already mentioned pictures from you guys last week.... but if there is anyone in the ward (well, both the Manila 2nd and SC 2nd) who would like to send some as well, I would love it! I've been looking for something to deck out my wall with, and I am sure that pictures would be the ideal choice. I love and pray for each of you everyday and throughout the day, and I just know everything will be great until I return. May God continue to bless each of you!!
Elder Isaac Livingston


Amy said...

What a fantastic letter. Sounds like he is happy :)

Kenz said...

Ummm...can I just say that I seriously CANNOT WAIT 3 years until I get to go on a mission! I'm so lucky to have a big bro like Ike! Keep up the good work, Elder!
Love you, Kenz

Kathy F. said...

How wonderful! Sounds like the Lord is placing prepared people in Elder Livingston's path. What joy!