August 12, 2014 (Week 4- MTC)
Hola Familia y amigos!
So this week was really awesome! Oh just so many stories to tell and I only have an hour to write them! So here goes nothing!
So we have been teaching every day in Spanish, of course, and it just keeps getting better and better! The spirit is so strong when you stop and listen to it. Most times when you prepare to teach someone you study, pray really hard what to teach, and rehearse and practice what you will be saying. I have learned that yes, all of that is necessary for you to be prepared to teach the gospel, but it's important to know that you should be ready to focus on the needs of the investigator. We walked in ready to teach Israel (Barffuss) about the sacrament but, he instead had his BOM (Book of Mormon) and was even more interested in our message this time! Last time we taught him about how to feel the Holy Ghost and he said he drinks a little bit. I don't know why this all happened the way it did, but I told him that "If you want to feel the spirit always you need to stop drinking" in that discussion. He quit it and wanted to do more so we ended up teaching about gaining our own testimonies for this lesson! Que Grande! The spirit led us through the discussion and he never wanted to read the BOM before until now!
Second story was from Friday with Levi. He was interested in the BOM and brought the one from his uncle's house. So we were surprised! He asked why the BOM is important to me. Elder Pace and I shared how we could obviously read from the BOM about the history of the Americas but that's not what it's about. It's a second witness and testament of Christ! The Book of Mormon is the teaching of prophets that were called of God to help guide us back to our Heavenly Father. We showed him a scripture about how God calls prophets and gives them the priesthood to do His work. In the scripture it said that Prophets are "Seers", Levi took that literal and explained to us that it sounded like the prophets could see into the future with mystic powers! Ha ha ha! Elder Pace was having a hard time because at first we were wondering what he was saying because we didn't know the word "Seer" in Spanish. He was making a motion with a crystal ball motion and saying "oh like Harry Potter" and stuff, so I whipped out the Bible Dictionary and that saved us sooooo much time in explanation. It was awesome because we then got to talk about the Priesthood and tell him how God gives authority to those he calls. He concluded that "there are tons of churches popping up everywhere and sometimes it seems like they mean good and others it's just for money" and other things. He found out through our best attempts of explaining in Spanish that if God had a church set upon the earth that it would be the exact same as the one Christ organized when he was on the earth. So we told him to pray to know if what we were saying was true and we both bore our testimonies. It was miraculous! So much spiritual power when you testify of the Gospel and Truth!
So another funny story that happened this morning at 3 AM. An Elder was leaving for Canada (Spanish speaking) at 2:30 and he stayed with our Zone leaders in the apartment complex next to us. So a security guard came in yelling "SECURITY" and I woke up looked up and he was asking me where Elder Russel was. I said "El está en el otro cuarto." (He's in the other room) as I was pointing. He looked at me and I said it three times in Spanish until I realized that I was speaking Spanish! I said sorry then spoke in English to help him. So there is the gift of tongues for you!
Sunday was just the best! Oh man! So go onto lds.org and watch the video on how the gospel saved a man's life. Our speaker brought up two missionaries that he picked from the crowd that were a part of the group that were people who didn't know who God really was. They told us their conversion stories and the spirit was tangible. It's Absolutely a remarkable thing when people find God and recognize how even when we ignore him how he is still there. He lives. I know He does. Every trial and feeling of Joy I have received in this life has been from Him, and it has only made me love deeper, become stronger, and overcome everything I have ever faced in life. He gave me my family. My friends. Every person who ever inspired me to be better. It's all from Him. If you don't believe He isn't there then just pray. Pray and see what happens when you try to find God. He's closer than you'd expect.
I will always share my testimony and always love because when I am left with nothing, I still have that. I exhort all who read this to read from the Book of Mormon Alma 32:26-37, or just pray. Ask whether God is there, because the moment you want to find him, he will show himself to you in the very things you see every day. As always I love every one of you who reads this message- LDS member or not.
"I can fit in the cupboards in my room"
Snake in the MTC west campus- Garden of Eden
Elder Mauri and Elder Burke