Monday, May 19, 2014

More than Words

First, I have to say thank you to all of you back home who prayed for our investigators or put their names in the temple, or prayed for my companion and I, because thanks to a lot of prayers and the hand of the Lord, two of our investigators accepted baptism. Not only did they accept, but they are so excited about their decision. 
Marisol was first. We have been teaching her since my first transfer here. We found her and she was so prepared. We extended a baptism date the second visit with her and she accepted, but slowly doubts crept into her mind which caused us to postpone the baptism. I remember that one of my MTC teachers said that when investigators have doubts, there is often another underlying problem that we have to find. We really tried to listen to the spirit on what she needed to hear. It was so interesting, we would be teaching her what we had planned, but then one of us would receive a prompting and the lesson would go off in a different direction. Then, during one of the lessons this past week, while we were talking about Jesus Christ, we felt a strong impression to invite her to be baptized again. We did it, and she said, "I just knew that you were going to bring that up, I could feel it." We continued to talk about baptism and after she accepted to be baptized on June 8th, she told us," I just feel really good. I want to be baptized."

The very next day, we were teaching Ulises. His story is very similar; we met him and we were so surprised at how prepared he was. Well, this time work got in the way. We didn't meet with him for a month. He wouldn't return our phone calls, or our texts, and before all of this he had mentioned that he was having some doubts about being baptized. We were pretty nervous that he had dropped us. Then, out of the blue, he calls us. He told us that he got caught up in a new crazy work schedule, and he felt so bad for not calling us back, but he wanted to start meeting with us again. We set an appointment with him and had been meeting with him about 2-3 times a week. We had brought up baptism in the previous lessons, but he said that his doubts had not left. We asked him how his scripture reading was going. He said he hadn't been reading very much because he was so busy. We knew this was exactly why he still had doubts. Well, this Wednesday, we thought we'd just stop by to bring him some food. (He is really poor, and too busy and tired to make food and the ward had a party the day before and gave the missionaries the extra food, so we figured that he could use it more than we could) Instead of just stopping by we decided to just talk and listen to how things are going in his life. He completely opened up. He expressed all of his fears about being baptized. And after that, we knew exactly what we needed to teach. We bore testimony of the blessings that we have received from the gospel. And as we stood out in the dark, on the sidewalk, in Princeton, with only our car headlights to read our scriptures, I felt the spirit. This time we asked him how he felt about being baptized. He said, "what was the date that you gave me to be baptized last time?" We told him, June 8th. He said, "I will be baptized on that day." He meant it. The spirit was indescribable. It was getting late, so we closed with a prayer, and got into our car to head back to our house. I was so happy, I cried. 

I have a deep love for each of my investigators. These feelings of love, have no words. They are more than words. I cannot wait for June 8th! 

Thank you again for your prayers. You are helping them. Seeing them this happy means the world to me. I will never be able to repay you. 

Hermana Childs

Monday, May 12, 2014

The Book of Mormon

Wow! It was so great to talk to my family yesterday! There is nothing better. One hour felt like 5 minutes. It was really interesting to speak in talk to English people. Yes, I am here in New Jersey, and I am still in America, but it is still odd since I spend 99% of my time with Hispanics.
This last week I went and got a blood test for my thyroid. I have been feeling extremely tired and just a little bit off, so I called the mission nurse and she instructed me to get a blood test as soon as possible. This morning I received the results from the doctor: Negative. As far as my thyroid goes, everything looks right as rain. 

I also finished The Book of Mormon today in my personal study!!! That is a true book. As I was reading The Book of Mormon this time, it felt different. I felt the power that it contains every time I would read it. During lunch and dinner breaks, I would find myself opening it up just to read more. Just like many of you have favorite novels or adventure series that you just can't get enough of, my experience with The Book of Mormon is exactly the same. In the 6th paragraph of The Book of Mormon, Joseph Smith states, "I told the brethren that the Book of Mormon was the most correct of any book on earth, and the keystone of our religion, and man would get nearer to God by abiding by its precepts, than by any other book". I know that to be true. I have seen myself come closer to Christ as I read. It's amazing how one book, 531 pages, can change your life in this life and alter your course for the life to come.

I add my witness to that of Joseph Smith that it is the most correct book of any on the earth. I know The Book of Mormon is true. I have grown to love it. I encourage all of you to read it. Read it every day. Learn from it. Apply its teachings. And then watch your life change for the better.

How blessed we are to have this book. Don't take it for granted. 

I love you all! 
Hermana Childs

Monday, May 5, 2014

Full-Time Members

"The Field is White"

Turn your hands over and look at your palms. You have two M's. They stand for member and missionary and you need both to get work done.

In fact, the missionary efforts would be nothing without the members. I know this from personal experience. Last week, we really struggled having members present in our lessons, and we saw a difference in the way that our lessons turned out. Having a member present is essential to the CONVERSION of an investigator. When we have members with us, they bare testimony with such sincerity that the investigators cannot deny it. There is something different about the testimony of members. They have a special sparkle that they add to the lesson. The missionaries truly need the members!!

We may not all be full-time missionaries, but we are all full-time members. 

On another note, this week I have been working to develop the Christlike attribute of 'diligence'. Diligence, in Preach My Gospel, is defined as "steady, consistent, earnest, and energetic effort in doing the Lord's work". I only have so much time as a missionary and I don't' want to waste a single minute of it by not being diligent, and I won't. "A diligent missionary works effectively and efficiently"; she works "until [she] has done all that [she] can, even when [she] is tired". Trust me. This week I was tired. But I was tired because I worked. And at the end of the week, my companion and I reaped the rewards of working so hard. We had doubled our numbers from the previous week, found 10 new investigators, taught 30 lessons, and loved every minute of it. 

I have never been so happy in my whole life! 

Sending my love, 
Hermana Childs