Friday, July 3, 2015

Obedience Brings Blessings, But Strict Obedience Brings Miracles!

I know I always say how many miracles we have during a week. But wow what a week. It has been amazing. Like probably the best since I have been on my mission. My new companion is Sister Michaud and she is from Mesa Arizona. And she is awesome! We get along so great and are helping each other become more and more consecrated and dedicated to our purpose as missionaries. I still have no idea how I am going to train her but hopefully the meeting that we are going to on Tuesday will help out! But she came trained! Seriously its so great being here. It is interesting because a lot of our set appointments canceled this week so we didn't get to meet with Chris, Mia, or Arem. So that was sad but we did get to meet with Jeffery. He is coming a long slowly and steady. He recognizes that he feels good while he is with us and while he is reading from the Book of Mormon but doesn't feel like he has gotten an answer yet. He told us that he thinks something is missing from his life and that other places and churches haven't been able to fill that. And he said that he feels complete when he meets with us but he doesn't want to get baptized!! It was so heart breaking! But we aren't through yet. We asked him if he would when he knew it was true and he said yes but he wouldn't commit to a date. He said that he just doesn't want to have his life defined by religion and that he is conflicted because he doesn't know if he will be happier if he stays the same or is baptized. So he is going to pray with real intent this week and we are praying like crazy for him! 

So another amazing miracle this week was we went at like 8:50 to go follow up with a potential investigator and we knock on his door and he was so happy to see us. Him and his wife invited us in right away. They said that they had a surprise for us so naturally we were a little sketched out haha. But out walks this young man named Micah and he is a returned missionary and just moved in with them. Apparently they met at orientation for funeral director school and Phillip asked if he had a place to live and he said no so he invited him to stay with them. So we talked to them about the restoration and they have heard a lot of rumors about the gospel and about Joseph Smith. We taught them part of the restoration and they were open to learning more about it all and we are meeting with them tomorrow! But when we walked out Micah told us that he had been praying and reading his scriptures that night asking for a way to share the gospel with them soon. And then like 10 minutes later we knocked on their door. The Lord works in mysterious ways but it was the coolest thing ever. 

Then on Friday night this week we went to the church to finish our weekly planning and we saw these people who were just sitting by the church. We went and talked to them and they said they just come to sit at the church everyday because they like the way they feel while they are there. They are from the pacific islands and their names are Jeran and Fancy. They asked how they could get to heaven so we started to talk to them about the plan of salvation and the restoration and the priesthood. They absolutely loved it. They set up a time to meet with us the next day and sadly they never showed up. But yesterday we went to the church and we saw them in the parking lot again! They said that they had a family thing going on and they felt so bad that they couldn't call us or tell us they weren't going to be there. But we were able to give them a tour of the church and they felt the spirit so strongly. It was amazing. We talked about Joseph Smith and all of the pictures in the church. Then we showed them the chapel and talked about the sacrament. They took their copies of the Book of Mormon and were just so happy. They said that they feel something. And that it is good. Its hard to put into words the feelings there because the spirit was just so strong and I am so excited for them. They told us they would get baptized once they knew it was true. We will see them again on Wednesday. 

We have just been working hard and trying to do our best out here in Columbia River. We had to say goodbye to 11 of our Elders because they are leaving to go to the Yakima Mission. And that was really sad. We all sang to them at transfer meetings and President cut the song short because he was about to cry. Our mission is so close, it really is a family and I feel SO blessed to be here in the best mission in the entire world with the best mission president ever. The gospel is true, the work is good, and the miracles are many. Obedience brings blessings but strict obedience brings miracles. In the mission field and in our life. I hope you all have a wonderful week and remember that I am always praying for you! 

Sister Stephens 

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