Friday, March 14, 2014

Love the Truth

March 3, 2014

Oh how the tables have turned. So while you bundle up and start the fire, we'll be driving from home to home trying to get folks to come back to church! YEEHAW. Can't complain though... its 100 degrees in Brazil...

Hey. We worked super hard this week. I'm taking a more active role in planning out what we do and who needs us and how to find the people that are prepared as I learn the area and all the members in it. We're pulling out all the stops to try and find-- talking to everyone, contacting formers, asking all members who they're working with, etc. It's a little slow going but we just keep on trying. And our big focus with our less-actives is getting them to come to church and prepare for the temple. This whole Hartford temple thing... really inspired and needed in this area. It's giving people the standard to look towards, the goal to reach for. Something BIG and new. And even the workers on the temple ground have been feeling something different about this, plus the members in our ward send them treats so best construction job ever.

This week:
-found out Brother B (the guy whose kitchen/house we cleaned from water damage and a broken sink?) is in a nursing home after falling and injuring himself, and calling 911 to help him. Probably for the best. His birthday is tomorrow and maybe we'll find a way to do something spectacular for him
-I got sick with flu-like stuff, so I slept half the day on Wednesday. subsequently that day felt super weird and I reminisced those fog-filled Lyme disease weeks back in July... thank goodness that's over
-we went on SPLITS. And had like 6 member lessons. Which is a lot for us. and a missionary who served in this area called from home and told us to go visit some people.
-it was too cold for Jerry to come be taught at a members home. according to him. #wimp
-WE TAUGHT JERRY. FINALLY. And it was beautiful. We made a plan for members to come over and read the BoM with him (fellowshipping and worship-two birds with one stone.) He opened up to us about how he's waiting for "family issues" to resolve before he "does the baptize." I love Jamaicans. 
-We finished the Restoration with Ella and taught the Plan of Salvation with VISUALS. She was amazed to learn that people lived on earth before Jesus, but also gave a perfect account of Adam and Eve, complete with personal commentary. She is a women of endless mystery to me. I guess when you're 93 you can do that.
-----We were like inches from getting her to church yesterday-- in her wheelchair, had coat and gloves and Book of Mormon in hand, when the nurse told her she didn't have clearance to leave. ARGH. We had members there to take her and everything. So next week we will make sure beforehand that she's good to go. I guess she's never wanted to leave the nursing home until now, so they were surprised. The lady wants some church! LET HER HAVE CHURCH!
-we went on exchanges with the zone leaders we live with, and elder jensen told me I have a lot of desire. to find and help people. and that he was impressed that the toughness of the mission hadn't diminished my desire. that was probably the most needed compliment of all time-- and I don't plan on losing it anytime soon. 

I have one sentence to give to you to ponder this week. I bore my testimony and quoted it yesterday in church, and it continues to open my mind to the meaning of "enduring to the end". Taken from "According to the Desire of [Our] Hearts" by Elder Neal A. Maxwell. 

"Do you,” President Young asked, “think that people will obey the truth because it is true, unless they love it? No, they will not” (in Journal of Discourses, 7:55). Thus knowing gospel truths and doctrines is profoundly important, but we must also come to love them. When we love them, they will move us and help our desires and outward works to become more holy."
There are many gospel doctrines I know are true. A multitude. But how many of them do I love? If there's one thing I learned from Ender Wiggin, it's that when you truly understand someone, you love them. Like the Buggers, the truth can so often be an alien species, offensive because it is different and doesn't mold to our cares and concerns. But when we seek to understand these truths by finding how and why they came to be, we recognize their worth. And we begin to love them. Obeying them becomes as natural as breathing. 

I love you all more than I can express. Keep on learning and loving life, and God will give you freely.

-Elder Jackson

moving time=tea time (Elder Jensen on the right)
throwback to pre-tag times with the elder of Jacksons

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