This week was very interesting, as Cumbernauld usually is. Diane Fletcher dropped us this week. She said she had just wanted to learn more about her grandmother's religion, and she didn't see how it could benefit. We tried to see if we could come by some time this week to talk to her in person, but she refused. I don't think it's her time yet. Elder Davis, my district leader from Airdrie, told us about an investigator he had in one of his areas who he taught for a while, but they never brought up the fact that their goal for her was baptism. One lesson, Elder Davis invited her to be baptized, and she just started laughing. Then, when she realized he wasn't joking, she said ''Are you serious?'' It has re-impressed upon my mind the importance of how we begin teaching people - by setting up expectations, by setting mutual goals and an understanding learning environment, and making sure we're on the same page.
We are also still teaching Bridy, who didn't read the Book of Mormon this week, because she was busy, but we recommitted her to read, and she is feeling ''calm'' when she reads. It is great to see her faith in the Lord as she reads and cross-studies the Book of Mormon and the Bible together, and she is still learning everything quite comprehensively. We also took Brother Buckel, an older man in the ward who I have never joint taught with, to teach with us. It went a lot better than I expected, and it taught me that the gospel blesses all families who live it.
Guess what? We went to give Joe the final Come to Jesus talk, and we told him we had to see him 3 times a week, and we had to see commitment from him if we are to keep teaching him. And... he was completely sober and had been reading the Book of Mormon, and agreed to our terms. SO... Joe's back. Again. :)
Stephen has also started watching the Book of Mormon reader videos on his iPad. He enjoys them, and is able to relate the story quite well back to us. He has been keeping the commitment to pray and watch the videos. We also found out that he has been not quite honest with us all the way. He accepted coffee at the charity shop from his friends, and we don't know if he is keeping the Law of Chastity because his college friend comes over at night, and when she asked him for coffee from his bedroom, he said ''SHHHHH! Don't you want a coke or something?'' But we will talk to him this week, and be honest with him, and we hope he is honest with us. The Gospel functions on honesty - honest prayer, honest searching for the truth with ''real intent'', honest testimony, honest openness to the Spirit, eternal truth, and honest commitment to living the Gospel.
I really liked as I was studying this week in Alma 49. It talks about how Moroni fortified all the cities occupied by the Nephites. The Lamanites, intent on destroying the Nephites, first march toward the city of Ammonihah, because they remembered in the past that it was the weakest city. However, upon arriving, they are astonished because the city has all manner of preparations for war. They abandon the hope of taking Ammonihah, and revert to plan B; attack the city of Noah. Then again, to their astonishment, and even after a fierce attempt to take the city, they are defeated by the preparations and the fortifications of the Nephites. It taught me that Satan will attack the areas that he knows is weak. In Ether 12:27, it says that the Lord gives us weakness, so that when we humble ourselves and come to Him, He will make our weaknesses strong. I looked for a weakness this week, and worked to overcome it, and I saw my relationship with my companion and the Lord improve. Just like the Nephite cities, we can look for our weak points, and improve them, so when Satan comes to take advantage of them, we are prepared. It also goes the same way with missionary work. When I look for the areas I can improve, and then make plans to carry them out, I can fortify the work and help it hasten like the Lord is asking us to do.
No crazy people or animals this week.
Also... this next Sunday is Moves' Call, so Elder Christensen and I will know where we are ending up for the next transfer. I have a feeling I will be moving, because I have been here in lovely Cumbernauld for 6 months, and I think Elder Christensen will be staying (and possibly training, as Cumbernauld seems to be a place where missionaries get trained a lot, but it's up to the Lord). We will see where the Lord wants me the next month and a half! :) Which means I will not email 'til about Wednesday I believe.
Thank you for your support and emails, and I appreciate all the love I get each week. I have found out that letters and pictures from home uplift my soul and my joy, and can sometimes even bring tears of happiness. So thank you. :)
I know the Gospel is true. I know the Lord is patient with those He works with, and uses their special talents and abilities to help others. I know the Gospel bless families.
Elder Devin Jay Hunter
P.S. Kirk out!
P.P.S. Spell check thinks Devin isn't a real word... :'( oh well