Well surprise, surprise, Sister Cutler and I had another amazing week here in Warsaw!! Gloria was baptized this week, we were able to teach quite a few more lessons and we started to share our awesome "challenge" (hold your horses, I promise to tell you all about it too :)!!
Gloria's baptism was amazing!! It was so tender (wow cheesy word choice) to see her be baptized. She was grinning ear to ear the entire time!! She shared with us the day before she was baptized how excited she was. To see the pure joy on her face was priceless. She even invited her best friend Megan to her baptism!! Go Gloria, what an awesome example of a member missionary (she is only 10!!!)!!!!!!!!! (Just a few more !!! will be needed to try to express how exciting this day was!!!!!!!!!! yayyyyy baptisms!!!!!!!!!!!!)
It was amazing to see the hand of the Lord in our week. We were able to see almost all of our investigators and we were able to give one a baptismal date. This was awesome because I am not even back to missionary work full time (stupid foot). I hobble very nicely in my boot. And everyone seems to know the embarrassing story of how this all happened in the first place……. hahahahah. And now EVERYONE quotes my mother to me… "No dancing in the kitchen!" To say the least, this ward will remember me :) oh and Sister Cutler and I leave random pictures of our faces on member’s fridges. It is kind of fun!
So let me tell you a little bit more about J. Black. She is a hoot, well to say the least. She is in her 70s…. 0r 80s (not sure, we tend not to ask people their ages until we need it). The very first thing that she said when she met us was "I sure don't like Indiana. Everyone here is fat, bald and toothless. I didn't want to more here. And what do you know! Now that I moved here I am fat, bald and toothless. You girls better watch out!" So yikes!! Hopefully I don't come home fat, bald or toothless. Well she was very closed off to the church at first. She is best friends with a member though, and that member just had to share the gospel with her. She kept inviting her to go out to Pizza Hut with us. At first we didn't talk much about gospel subjects. She was eventually invited to participate in the empty nester’s Family Home Evening group. She loved it!! She got to know the members involved with that. And what would you know, her curiosity got the best of her when she started to ask questions about why the members are so good and what makes them the way the are. So a few lessons and a few questions answered later she now is committed to baptism!!!! It is amazing to see the hand of the Lord in this work, especially when members and missionaries work so closely together!!
So now for the "challenge." As Sister Cutler and I do with all of our investigators, I would LOVE to commit you all to this challenge. And I am going to do it with you. I promise it will change your life ;D
First things first, I have to explain how all of this came about. Sister Navarro has been so kind to let me put my foot up at her house, so a couple of weeks later and a lot of hours we have this awesome challenge, a way that I could still do missionary work while I am not ready to hit the ground running again.
This challenge is called 40 Day and 40 Nights. It is to read the Book of Mormon in 40 day and 40 Nights. The program outlines exactly which chapters to read in the morning and which chapters to read at night! Each day has a specific scripture that we already found for you, which testifies of Christ. The whole point of this is not just to read but to come closer to Christ. The Book of Mormon is Another Testament of Christ and what better way to come closer to Christ then by reading it!! By reading it in this short time period, it is not so much to dig really deep in the doctrine, but to come to a better understanding of Christ and build your personal relationship with him!!
So the program is not just reading. I am sure you can read it for yourself, but it also involves praying, sharing, reflecting and writing!! One of the most important parts of this challenge is to testify of Christ everyday!! And to pray for service opportunities.
OH AND if you start on November 16th (Just like me and Sister Cutler and all of the Warsaw Ward and some of our investigators too :) you will finish on CHRISTMAS DAY!!!!!!
I would really love if all of you would do this! I am going to do it too, so you will not be alone ;) As a missionary, when we commit our investigators or members to do something, we always promise blessings. As I commit all of you to do this (that is if you are up to the challenge) I would like to promise you blessings and leave you with my testimony.
I promise that as you read the Book of Mormon and take this challenge you will grow closer to Christ. You will understand and feel our Heavenly Father's love for you more strongly in your life. You will have the ability to recognize opportunities to serve more readily and the capacity which to serve more fully. As you take this challenge and complete it to the very best of your ability, as you come to know Christ better, you will become more like Christ. As we come to know our Savior more through reading the Book of Mormon we better understand the Atonement of Christ, which means that we are able to more fully apply the power of the Atonement in our lives. I am so grateful for our Savior, Jesus Christ. Without him, I would be nothing. With out him, there is no way to overcome our sins, no way to return to our Father in Heaven. But through him, we are able to find happiness and pure joy in this life. The power of the atonement is real. I know that our Heavenly Father loves us and wants us to return to live with Him again. I know that reading the Book of Mormon will help you come closer to Christ. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.
I love you all so much!! Oh and for my Birthday ;) I would LOVE to hear about the experiences that come from taking this challenge!!
All my love from the Hoosier State,
If you want to participate in the challenge and would like an easier to read copy of the Schedule/ Challenge email me firstname.lastname@example.org and I will send you one.
Heidi (Sarah's mom)