Monday, February 27, 2012

Faith, Hope and Charity

February 27, 2012
Dear Family and Friends,

Hey what’s going on family? This week has been crazy and super busy! I have some bad news but it’s not all bad because all in its due time right, we are on the Lords time table and not our own. Our investigators who had a baptism set for last Sunday did not get baptized yesterday as she has recently had some doubts that have come from her next door neighbors of another faith. It’s all good because we are not giving up. We had dinner with the family last night and she made us tacos de pollo asado. They were so good and probably the best tacos I have ever had. We will continue to work hard with them and I know they are close. The kids are awesome and came to church all dressed up in there suits yesterday. I really think the two little boys are going to be future missionaries. Anyways it’s kind of sad that the baptism didn’t go through but all is well as this just means we have to depend on the Lord more to help them gain a testimony through the spirit.

I have come to realize the importance of having a friend in the church and how this has helped S to talk about her thoughts. We talked to the Relief Society President last night and she said she would pay her a visit. The members are so important in missionary work and right now we are working really hard to gain their confidence and get everyone missionary minded.    I know that the family will be baptized soon and we are going to have to exercise some stronger faith and pray harder than we ever have. As I have worked with this family I have come to understand the true importance of what I’m doing as a missionary from a more eternal perspective. I see the two little boys that can be missionaries one day. I see the parents and how they can be sealed in the temple as a family one day. This means more to me than just teaching but I truly desire that this family will come unto Christ because I truly know it will change their lives. I’m grateful to have this gospel in my life and I’m trying my best to have the guidance of the Holy Ghost so he can testify to the people that live in the area of the truthfulness of this message. Everything is going great and I will continue to search to find the elect.
Well I’m loving life out here in Woodburn as my companions are awesome and we truly are unified as we teach. I have set some new goals for myself as I know that time is short before I head back home so I set the goal to read the whole Missionary Library before I come back home. I want to read the Book of Mormon, Bible, Jesus the Christ, PME, D y C and the Pearl of Great Price. It’s a huge goal but I know I can do it as I have been waking up early enough to get a lot of reading time in. The medicine is working great and I am able to get a lot more done as I am able to focus on a task and get it done. I talked to the doctor the other day and he said everything seems to be going well and if anything he will reduce my dosage.

We had some pretty cool experiences last week as we have been starting to have more Family Home Evenings with the members of the Rama. We have seen a huge change in the members and their desire to do missionary work as we share a short lesson and then play a quick game. We invited S and her family to a Noche de Hogar with a family in the Rama and everyone had a good time. It’s a great way to fellowship and teach an investigator all at the same time as we strengthen the members and their testimonies. I have seen that this is the key and now the members are wondering who they can invite to their next Noche de Hogar because they had such a good time. Tell the Elders there in the Cherokee Rama that knocking doors is not the answer and that should be a last resort. There is always service to do, plans to be made, less active families to strengthen and  the list goes on forever. Especially in a little branch where most of the members are new to the gospel, they need the lessons too and need to be strengthened. It’s a win-win as they will improve their Spanish as well.  Well that’s my opinion and I have seen miracles in Woodburn as the members here are catching on fire. Well I love you guys and let me answer that question real quick that you asked me.
Okay Son, a new question for you to ponder.  How do you answer when someone questions if Mormon’s are Christians and how you feel about the Savior?

Well when people ask about Mormons and if we are Christians I always point to my nametag and say, "We are missionaries from the Church of JESUS CHRIST of Latter Day Saints." Then we explain to them our purpose and how it is our desire and duty to bring others to Christ. We also share our testimonies of the Savior and his role in the life of all of Gods children and without the Savior or his sacrifice we wouldn’t be able to return back to the father. We testify of the divinity of Jesus Christ and that he is the Son of God.  I have seen on my mission that a testimony is something that people cannot deny. They may not agree with you but they can’t argue with a personal testimony.   I have especially learned this as the neighbors next to S have been trying to prove everything with their interpretation of the Bible but we can see what happens with that as there are more that 100 church’s alone just in Woodburn that try to interpret the Bible and don’t believe in the need of a restoration of the Gospel or modern day revelation.  Well guys, I love you and I love this work, there’s no place I’d rather be than in the service of the Master.


Elder Payne