Well folks I know that last week my email was short and not too sweet. This week we had Zone Conference and Pres. Pinho talked a little about the importance of writing to our families. He started to cry and say that our moms pray for us everyday and they have the right to know what´s going on in our lives. I felt kinda bad so this week will be much better.
Like I said this week we had Zone Conference. It was really good. Pres. Pinho talked about our desires and how we need to be a standard to the nations in everything that we do as missionaries. I´m currently studying the missionary chapters of the book of Alma so it was perfect because I kept thinking of all the amazing examples that we have of powerful missionaries that showed no fear in the face of a nation of nephite killers.
That ties into the division I did this week with the couple in my district. They are two really new missionaries, Elder Neilson and Elder Hendricks. During the division Elder Neilson had difficulty controlling the situation and getting to the point so we studied together about the power and authority of our calling. It was an amazing study session and we both learned a lot about our mantle as representatives of Jesus Christ and how we can´t be afraid to testify and challenge everyone to put the Restored Gospel in practice and follow the example of or savior into the waters of baptism. Elder Neilson and Elder Hendricks, after a few difficult months, now have a really good teaching group and should baptize a lot in March.
I really enjoy working as a district leader because I have been following and enormous change in our own area and in the other areas of our district. Our district was baptizing very little and the missionaries were all a bit disanimated, but over the past few weeks everything has been changing and it all had to start with our attitudes. Attitude changes everything! If you plant a bad seed in the beginning all you are going to reap are bad fruits. The truth is is that it is alot easier to be negative. Like a weed, negativity grows without being nurtured and spreads and suffocates everything around it. A negative attitude can destroy tons of work. It goes down to the root and puts everyone down. On the contrary, positivity stengthens and supports everything around it. Unfortunately, a positive attitude is hard to keep. You have to nurture it and you have to be able to pick yourself up when things don´t go well. But in the end the fruits of that good seed are so much better.
Our teaching group is going really well. This week we have planned to baptize Jefferson, Silvana and Bruno. They are all excited and decided to enter the water but they all are facing different challenges. Jefferson is way shy and knows very few young men in the ward but with the support of his part member family that all want him to baptize he is progressing.
Silvana is now facing some new challenges but is still moving forward. Her son Bruno, who is also marked to be baptized, is having some bad influences messing up his responsibilites as the man of the house and Silvana who works at night now has her exhusband taking care of the kids. He is trying to stop her from being baptized and wants her to start living with him again and break just about every commandment you can thing of. She told us that she wasn´t sure if she still wanted to be baptized. Yesterday we finally met the ex and shut him down as far and putting the stops on Silvanas baptism is concerned. We testified and challenged him to change is life and he rejected the invitation. She was able to see that he has absolutely now interest in changing his life and following Christ for now, and that if she decides to follow the path he is offering it will only destroy her and her family. At the end of the visit she said, "I will be baptized on Saturday!" Right on Silvana!
After we baptize the people we have in the next two weeks we don´t have anything. Well, we didn´t have anything. This week some of our old investigators appeared again and are more willing to fulfill commitments now. We also received a ton of referrals from the members of our ward and we have a new teaching group to get ready for April! Haha! Gotta plan ahead.
Well that´s it for this week. I leave you with a big toothy grin (you can´t really see it but be sure that it´s there). Hope all is well and just a reminder March 9th is coming up. For those who don´t know, March 9th is my birthday and I expect presents! haha! Just kidding! Cards would be just fine. Love you all!
Elder MacLane Taggart