Monday, November 16, 2009
Happy Monday! How is everyone doing? A spiritually full weekend! It started of course with Zone Conference, which was great! Pres. Robbins talked mostly about temples and covenants, and explained what the ancient portable tabernacle symbolized. It was really cool, especially for a history buff like myself. Pres. Robbins also gave each companionship a copy of Pres. Hinckley's famed missionary talk, "Find the Lambs, Feed the Sheep," which made me very excited! I've talked with him about it quite a bit over the past several months, and he is looking for ways to help us improve in member-missionary work because it is still obviously a problem. It has opened my eyes about how important member-missionary work is, and strengthened my resolve to be involved in it when I get back. We go out with Pres. Phillips, our branch president each Tuesday, and this time we're going to talk first about missionary work within the branch and how to create more effective Family Mission Plans. I'm looking forward to that! In addition, both of his counselors in the branch presidency should also be going with us to appointments this week. Indeed, effective member-missionary work starts with leadership!
Anyway, so then we had a great Stake Conference yesterday.Pres. and Sis. Robbins both spoke and did great. Pres. Phillips also gave some remarks, so I got to hear from several people I'm well-acquainted with. As for our investigators, Dustin can't get baptized until July because he is on probation for a felony. He was disappointed that he couldn't get baptized next month, but his attitude was full of faith and optimism. Apart from probation, his only real stumbling block continues to be smoking, but he is making an honest effort to overcome it. When he found out the news, his response was something along the lines of, "It's going to be fine. I've been looking for the truth for years, and I'm done searching. I know the Church is what it claims to be, and I WILL join it when I'm off probation." As a missionary, having done all that you could, there honestly isn't a better response you could ask for! We finished teaching him all the lessons last night, and now our focus will be geared toward developing a regular scripture study habit, particularly the Book of Mormon. He knows quite a bit about the Church from the website, but we're helping him to focus more time on this....at least to do it first.
Joey on the other hand is on track for baptism on the 5th of December. Much like Dustin, there isn't really anything that he doesn't understand AND apply, so it makes our teaching almost effortless because he prays for the Spirit to help him understand, and the Spirit helps us teach accordingly. He has fellowshipped himself into the branch, everyone gets along with him and he can carry a conversation as good as anyone. Well, that is basically what's happening in Hazard right now. We're also working with our recent converts and helping them fulfill their responsibilities in the branch. Bro. Flinchum, whose wife was baptized in August, received the Melchizedek Priesthood at stake conference yesterday. He was inactive for 45 years until about a year and a half ago when he decided to turn his life around. He's a referee for basketball and loves sports alot, so he and I get along. He has definitely come a long way.
This kind of thing always reminds me that missionary work is not for non-members only. I've seen a few instances of that during my mission in helping less-actives come back, recent converts to get their feet wet, or in helping active members fulfill their missionary responsibilities. There is no end to the rewards, but the timing is always the Lord's! Well, that's the latest on things down here. We still have a lot of referrals left to contact, but we're working on narrowing it down one piece at a time.
Well anyway, I hope all is going well on the homefront! Any significant snowfall yet? Doesn't look like we'll get any here anytime soon, but you never know with the weather. Love you all, have a great, great week!