Something very exciting happened this week! We were finally able to teach this man named Mike! We have been teaching his fiance, Alicia, (I think I wrote about her a few weeks ago. She came to church with her fiance and two children a couple weeks back) for two transfers now. We taught Mike very little of the first discussion, but he told us about how he was so excited to start coming to church more often. He also said that if his family had more of God in their lives that they would be happier and that their home would be more stable. How true is that! We have been promised that if we establish our homes on principles such as faith and repentance and prayer that we will be blessed in our families. Our homes become a heaven on earth, not just living quarters. BUT Mike got choked up a little when he was talking about bringing his family together through the gospel. It was really tender and I was touched. The spirit was so strong there!
We also were able to have dinner with a family in which four of them have recently joined the church and the mother is a returning member. The couple was able to go to the temple a week ago! and at the end of this month they will be sealed for time and all eternity! We shared a message about temples after dinner and the spirit was incredibly strong. Their home become a holy place.
---The best part about being a missionary is the change I see in the people I meet, both on a daily basis and long-term. I have changed so much on my mission. I have become more converted to the gospel of Jesus Christ. I have come to really feel as Paul did, "For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth..." (Romans 1:16). I've come to see how much I love my Savior. As we were driving to the library this morning to email, I saw a man doing some construction work in the road and one of my first thoughts was, "I want to share the gospel with him" and "He needs to know of the Atonement." I can assure you that I never would have thought that a year ago. NEVER. This work has changed me through and through. AND I LOVE IT!
Fun fact: Sister Hanshaw and I are reading the entire Book of Mormon this transfer. We started two weeks ago and we are almost done with Mosiah! Wish us luck. I have already begun to recognize the spirit more often in my life. Blessings come to those who seek them.
We were able to have dinner with the senior couple in our zone! The L couple!! They are amazing! I love them so much! THEY HAVE 10 CHILDREN! Holy smokes. The crazy part is that they had ten children in 17 years. That must have been so hard! Also Elder L doesn't have a college education. He told us that he had to work between 3 and 6 jobs!! He has a great deal of faith. It was such a blessing to have dinner with them not just because of the food, but because of the stories that led them to a strong conversion and conviction. They have 41 grandchildren with more coming! There youngest sons are still in their 20s! Now that is an accomplishment.
Also, a tender mercy about having dinner with them is that they reminded me of the senior couple that taught my family nine years ago--the Hulls. I am grateful for their service everyday.
I love you all! I love being a missionary!
Love, Sister Hardy