Events I experienced:
Monday was a super p-day. I got 6 Devred ties for 30 euros. Excellence. We taught J-L at Frère Vil's FHE! It went very well. We talked about obedience, scriptures and prayer. We taught him how to receive personal revelation. A good day!
Tuesday was cool, we got to see J-L again. We taught him the 10 commandments. Pretty simple, we focused on repentance and helping see that he can be forgiven of his past sins. I found out from Nes that his sister passed away last week, that's why he's been depressed. Please pray for Nes, that he'll be able to keep hope during his trials. After planning and some porting, we saw the Cojs! We had dinner, and Frère Vil did his home teaching visit. Then we took a little time to talk about baptism with Sister Coj (non-member wife of Frère Coj) and about how goals help us succeed. So, we set a date for September 24th, when she can be baptized with her daughter in the new Brive chapel! Frère Coj was super excited, sister Coj too. Okay they were all excited haha! Super cool victory there.
Wednesday was good! We got 4 new potentials today, an incredible miracle! One of the potentials said he wanted to meet with us to talk about the bible. I'm excited! He didn't sound like a basher, we'll see. We passed an old ami who owns a jewelry store, and we had a great discussion in his shop. He says he's too busy but it was neat to hear that he still thinks about us and remembers the members too. We passed another old ami from years ago and he promised to read the Book of Mormon and pray seriously with real intent! I'm not sure he really wants to change, but we'll see. Maybe the book will help him change his mind. We saw Elo as well, we taught her tithing and fast offerings. No problems there. She left our rendezvous to go be home taught, she's been integrated very well, it's such a blessing!
Thursday was good, we got to see 3 member families! We engaged the Dre family to make a family mission plan. We visited with Soeur Fa to see how she was doing with her goal to quit smoking. We taught S Den about the 10 commandments. It was a great day. And we made apple crumble for all of them. They loved it! Frère Hub also came and helped us transport old bikes to the dump. I'm not sure if I want to own a trailer when I'm older, I feel like I'd become everyone's servant/friend-only-when-they-need-help-moving-something.
Friday was INCREDIBLE! We had zone training in Bordeaux. We came up with a zone game plan to get ready for Elder Christofferson to come to our mission. (I just found out we'll be flying there, from BDX to Lyon, with 2 zones in one apartment the night before-30 elders hahaha). We are working on preparation, unity, and faith-faith to find. We have a challenge to engage 187 amis to baptism before the conference in 18 days. We have 30 days to do it, 18 days left. If we have faith we can do it, for Christ will strengthen us (Philippians 4:13). It was one of the best conferences I've ever had. Coming back to Brive, I went on exchange with Elder Rellaford, and it was a blast!
Saturday, our exchange. We had a ward missionary activity, we contacted and ported around Tulle. We found a new ami, his name is Fr, he now has a Book of Mormon and we're seeing him in a month. I hope that rendezvous sticks. We came back, switched companions, and went to help out Frère Vil clean his warehouse. It was very fun! We went back for the rest of studies, dinner, and weekly planning. During the 17 days left before Elder Christofferson, the district leaders are calling everyone in their districts every day to see how they're doing with the challenge. I'm glad Pangouliviers is so solid, we all have the faith to make it happen!
Sunday was great! We got to teach J-L the word of wisdom, it went well! He said he'll stop drinking wine and coffee. And an old amie, San, came to church! She is going through a lot right now, but she said God told her to go back to church! We're seeing her on Thursday, we hope to get her back on track for baptism!
Lessons I learned:
Ether 12:9 says "Wherefore, ye may also have hope, and be partakers of the gift, if ye will but have faith." This is why faith is so important!
PMG page 159 says "Avoid the tendency to say things such as, 'Do you have a few minutes that we could teach you a message about …' Rather, develop the habit of immediately beginning to teach and testify as you meet people. You will find more people to teach as you testify and allow them to feel the power of the Holy Ghost." Having the faith to teach on the spot has helped me a lot his week. A man once said: “As the heavens are higher than the earth, God’s work in your life is bigger than the story you’d like that life to tell. His life is bigger than your plans, goals, or fears. To save your life, you’ll have to lay down your stories and, minute by minute, day by day, give your life back to him.”
The Lyon stake president was invited to an event at Salt Lake City because the Lyon stake has the highest retention rate for convert baptisms in all of Europe! What did the president give as a reason? "Their ancestors helped them before baptism, and now they are going to the temple to help their ancestors in return." Now the church missionary committee is instructing for missionaries across the world to talk about temples, something we have already been doing since President Brown got here. This is not to brag or self-congratulate. I'm just grateful the Lord blessed President Brown to know how to be one step ahead of the game, ahead of Satan! This is proof to me that our mission president is inspired.
(free) Advice I have:
"Why Marriage, Why Family" by Elder Christofferson, April 2015 Gen conf. This talk is awesome! Very applicable for our day. In preparation for our conference with Elder Christofferson, we are reading one of his talks each week.
"He Loved Them unto the End," by Elder Holland, October 1989 Gen Conf. An excellent talk about how Jesus the Christ loves us-always. A quote about he Atonement: " The Light of the World stepped away from human company and entered the garden grove to wrestle with the prince of darkness alone. Moving forward, kneeling, falling forward on his face, he cried with an anguish you and I will never know, “O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me.” (Matt. 26:39.) But he knew, for our sakes, that it could not pass and that he must drink that bitter cup to the dregs!..His disciples, understandably, were weary and soon fell asleep. What of Christ’s sleep? What of his fatigue? What rest or slumber will sustain him through such an agonizing ordeal? That is simply not his concern here, nor does it ever seem to be. He will endure. He will triumph. He will not falter nor fail us."
What more can I say? That quote says it all.
Thanks everyone! I love you all! Have faith and don't ever give up, we aren't latter-day quitters, after all.
Love, Elder MacArthur
|Former Carcassonne Elders - Unidentified, Ben, Elder Richmond and Elder Stutz|