We have a good teaching pool right now. For some reason they all still are listening to the lessons... but not really progressing. And this week it was so amazing, to see how the Lord helped us with the spirit of discernment to figure out what is stopping them from progressing. And for two of our investigators it comes down to REALLY PUTTING GOD AND HIS CHURCH FIRST. I was thinking this week of the story of Abraham.. How he finally received the desires of his heart and had a son. And then how the Lord asked him to give him back, and how HARD that must have been. Abraham is such a great example of faith and love for the Lord.. and luckily the Lord blessed him because of that faith - but it shows the importance of needing to always put the Lord first.
We have an investigator who is really desiring to be baptized.. she knows it is true.. but she works on Sundays and cannot attend the church services. We shared the story of Abraham with her and knelt down and prayed with her to ask if she should quit her job and look for a new one. She is fearful that she will not be able to support herself or her family if she quits her job on Sunday... there is fear in her faith. We knelt down and prayed together.. the Spirit was so thick. We waited after in silence for a few minutes and finally asked her how she felt. She said she felt so peaceful. We helped her recognize that that is an answer from Heavenly Father.. peace is a gift from the spirit! She recognized it and agreed that maybe she needed to quit her job, and TRULY PUT GOD FIRST. But soon, fear crept in again and she went back to saying that would never be possible. I just started to cry - I don't know if they were tears of frustration, seeing that I have worked with her for 6 months now and she is just SO close.. or if they were tears of sadness because I know that Heavenly Father will bless her.. Sister Duffy and I told her that it is hard, being 20 years old and asking someone twice our age to quit her job.. It is uncomfortable because we don't quite understand what it is like, having to provide for ourselves.. But we testified to her, that as a representative of Christ, we teach and testify and promise for our Heavenly Father.. and we KNOW that the Lord will bless her if she shows Him, her faith. The spirit then testified to my heart, the power of my call and helped give me greater confidence. We talked about the pioneers.. and how many of their families died because they put God first - but they were blessed. As we walked out of the lesson, she looked at us and with the most sincerity said, "this is going to be hard, but I need to put God first." I really pray and hope that she will not forget that spirit she felt, giving her motivation to put God first. Please join me in praying that she will be able to find a new job.
Also this week we met with another one of our investigators.. She told us that she prefers not just having to sit and talk for a lesson, but asked if we could teach her as we went on a hike - we agreed to give it a try! It was a good idea and all, until we realized how hard it is to hike up a steep hill and teach at the same time, without running out of breath! It ended up being a little silly.. but it worked :) And then we met later during the week again for a sit down lesson at the church, where we could point out the spirit a little bit better. She knows the bible VERY WELL.. better than we know it.. and on our hike she asked some questions that we did not know how to answer. So we studied them, and then for our next lesson we started off by showing her what we found in the bible. It almost started turning into a "bible bashing" situation, which we tried to avoid at every case. So we quickly switched and just taught and testified of the Book of Mormon.. and it ended up making sense to her. She agreed to start studying and reading the Book of Mormon.. and pondering how she feels as she reads it with the Bible. It was a good reminder to me, that the Book of Mormon really is the KEYSTONE to our religion.. and when in doubt, we can testify of it and its truthfulness and it will always bring the spirit.
I am doing well.. I just feel a really sweet, calm, happy spirit and I love missionary work and I love these people here.. They make me laugh so much and I just am SO HAPPY AND GRATEFUL - my heart is very full! These are such special times to me and these moments have strengthened me in ways I could not even imagine.. "This is the day which the Lord hath made -- rejoice, and be glad in it."
Love, Sestra Nydegger
a little too tired to make it home