This week has been a lot of fun in Choctaw. I am continually learning about our Savior's life and what it means to be His disciple. It is definitely not easy, but each glimpse we get into his life is so fulfilling.So I missed Clarissa's wedding, but it was a good opportunity to think and ponder about the things that matter most. She has always been an amazing example to me and I don't think I've appreciated enough everything she's done. I'm proud of my big sister. While she I was in the sealing room I got to ponder and pray and all I felt was joy. What an incredible experience for the family. HFF!
I had some important lessons given to me this week. The first was the importance of member missionary work. I went on exchanges to Del City this week and got to visit one of the families we had talked to back when I was living there. They had progressed a lot in the gospel as the elders had met with them, and they were happy to learn. They actually taught us some volleyball moves before the lesson, so we're pretty much experts now. We started reading 3 Nephi 11 with them and a lot of questions came up. The lesson took its course and changed to talking about priesthood authority. To the daughter it made complete sense that people need to have God authority to act in his name, but to the mother it was very hard to accept. None of the denominations here talk about any kind of authority (except the Catholics), so it is new and kind of hard for them to think that no one else the authority to baptize. We explained it the best way we could, but she still wasn't satisfied. Finally, we had to go because it was getting late, so we said a prayer and started walking away. The member gave us the keys and kept talking to her. I don't think I'll every forget the picture of him crouching down to be on her level and just talking to her. All he was doing was showing that he cared. He got her number and went over the next day to help her understand things. I was amazed that he was so proactive and caring with someone he had never met. Members have special connections with investigators because inevitably we will leave. They are normal people that add so much security and confidence to the truth of the message.
A couple nights ago Elder Rodriguez and I were talking about the people we're working with. I really trust him and feel like I can tell him anything. Over the conversation I told him that I have worked so hard with these families, but I could have done more, and maybe if I had done a little more they would be baptized already. Elder Rodriguez lovingly let me know how wrong I was. There was one thing that stuck out to me. We can always do more, but we can never do enough for these people. We have to lead them to the atonement and leave them in the hands of God. We have taught them all they need to know before baptism, we have fasted and prayed many times, now all there is left to do is continue loving them and leave them in the hands of God. It's all going to work out for the best. Elder Rodriguez has been a great example to me these past weeks.
The last thing I wanted to share was a few verses that stuck out to me this week. Mark 9:22-24. A father goes to Jesus Christ for help because his son had an evil spirit. The father seems to be in desperation and without very much faith to rely on. With his hope that Jesus can help his son the father asks, "if thou canst do any thing, have compassion on us, and help us. Christ answers simply and straightforward that all things are possible with belief. Then the father cries out with tears. He says, "Lord, I believe; help thou mine unbelief". This is such an amazing example to me of the power of desire and hope. Sometimes we can't solve the problem and all we can do is desire to believe that Christ will help us through it. As our faith grows, so does our trust that God will fulfill every single one of his promises. He will heal us and lift us. I have seen that in my life because sometimes all I have is a desire to see things work out. We are in the hands of God.
I love you all! Have an amazing week!