Tuesday, March 18, 2014

I am so grateful for missionary work and miracles - 03/10/14

Melbourne Mission Moments 

Happy Labour Day! Public holiday here in Victoria but as far as I can tell, no one really does anything to celebrate. It's just a day off. Kind of like our labor day is! Good thing we still found somewhere with internet access--all the libraries are closed.

On Monday we had Sister's P-day with the Sisters on the east side. We learned to play net ball. Turns out I really like it! Seriously, it's really fun. And it doesn't take all that much athletic ability which is great for someone like me, ha. I'll have to teach you all how to play it when I come home! :) That night we had FHE with a family in our ward. They are such awesome missionaries! They are working with so many friends and family members! It's awesome to see members who just "get it."

At Net Ball Activity

Tuesday we had a huge miracle happen! So we had Zone Meeting in the morning which was really good. I always love meetings. But the best part was that during the meeting, one of the office sisters sneaked in and handed me a note. It had a name and phone number for a guy named Andreas and said "URGENT. Appointment today @ 4pm." As soon as our meeting was over, we called him. He explained that he is a member from Western Australia and that he has been here visiting friends for a few weeks. He explained that he had been talking about the church with his friend and her children and that they wanted to meet with missionaries. He was flying out on Wednesday and wanted us to meet L and the kids before he left. So we gladly rearranged our plans so we could have a lesson with them. L is so wonderful. She has recently realized that she needs more than what her church is giving her and is so prepared. She has such an open heart and just soaks in everything that we teach her. Seriously, GOLDEN. Her four kids are also awesome! We were able to teach them the Restoration and it went really well. The spirit was strong and we really taught in unity. At the end of the lesson, we were able to commit three of them to baptism on April 5th. I am so excited about having a family to teach! It is an answer to my prayers. About a week and a half ago, while we were staying at the mission home, I started praying that before I leave, I'd be able to bring a whole family into this gospel. Heavenly Father really does hear and answer our prayers!

We visited a member's home that night hoping to catch the less-active father and his non-member wife at home. Unfortunately they weren't home but their RM son was. We couldn't go in but we had a lesson with him out on the porch. We were able to make a plan with him of how we can help his dad get active again. It was breaking my heart. This son wants his father to be active so badly. I really hope that we can help him. I've found that it brings me just as much joy seeing someone come back to the church as it does for someone new to come.

Wednesday morning we tried to have a lesson with a referral. She is Burmese and the missionaries who contacted her told us that she has been here for 5 years and that her English is really good. Turns out they were wrong. There was such a huge language barrier. She couldn't understand anything. We ended up singing a song and praying with her and had to refer her to the Elders in our ward. Elder S is from Burma so he will be able to communicate with her.

Thursday morning we had to ride the train in to the city because Sister B had a follow-up appointment with the respiratory specialist. Her cough is pretty much completely gone now and everything looks good so that's a relief! After getting back to the flat and finishing studies and weekly planning, we got to go have another lesson with L and her kids. We went over the Restoration again and watched the DVD. Then we re-committed them to baptism. This time another child accepted too! They are so awesome :)

Thursday night we had ward council. I loved that for the entire hour and a half, the conversation was about PEOPLE. They really focus on people and what they need. It's awesome to see how much they care about individuals. I hope that every ward council in the church is that way!

We've been doing a lot of contacting formers this week which is always interesting. These are people who at one point or another have been learning from missionaries. You never know what reaction you are going to get. Some people are really negative and really don't want to hear anything. But other people we have met are quite open. We taught one former on Friday afternoon. He is an older gentleman. He's very smart. His whole house is full of books and he has written several math books and stuff. Very intelligent guy. Unfortunately, his intelligence gets in the way a little bit. He is very hung up on a verse in 2 Nephi 26:16 because it says "familiar spirit." He said that it means evil spirit. To be honest, it's one of those times when I have no idea how to respond. All that we could do was bear testimony. That's one thing I love about being a missionary. We're not required to know the answer to every question that people have. If all else fails, you bear testimony of the Book of Mormon. Because truly, if someone can have a testimony of the Book of Mormon, then they also gain a testimony of Joseph Smith and of the restoration of Christ's church. The Book of Mormon is such a powerful tool for us to use as missionaries. I'm so grateful for it. I love it. I learn so much from reading from its pages. Each morning I find myself wishing I could just use my whole personal study to read the Book of Mormon. I love it.

Friday night we were able to see an investigator again. Bishop has been working with her a lot lately and has really helped her. I'm hoping that soon she'll be to the point that we can start really teaching again and help her progress towards baptism.

Saturday we had another lesson with and her kids. We taught them about church and what happens there, explained all the different programs, etc. We invited them to church on Sunday but unfortunately, one of the kids didn't want to come until he knows a little bit more. L doesn't want it to be something that separates their family so she decided they would wait one more week to come to church. It stinks but I understand. So we're just going to keep teaching them and help them gain a testimony so they want to come to church.

After that we decided to stop by and see if the sisters were home because we haven't been able to see them in forever. We pulled up and their uncle was outside. He told us that they were moving house that day. He said he was driving there right then and that we could follow him. We were able to see them and help them unload a few things from the truck and make a return appointment for this week. It was the biggest miracle. If we had not gone to their house right at that time, we would have had no idea where they lived and they would have just been lost. Blessings.

Saturday night we were waiting for transfer calls. Typically the calls come around 9:30pm so we were just waiting for it. It didn't come until 10:15pm! Sister Burton and I are both staying in the area for another transfer. And I have reason to be happy--we're teaching a family!

After church yesterday we stopped by L's so that we could invite the older kids to the youth fireside that night. One had something going on but the other came. She actually really liked the fireside and met the Beehives in the ward who were all really welcoming and I think she felt really good!

This morning we had another lesson with L and the kids. We taught them the commandments of obedience, pray often, and scripture study. It went really well. We leave reading assignments every time and they always do them! We invited her son to come to mutual tomorrow night. He wants to come! Even if it's baby steps, we're moving in the right direction.

I love you all so much. I am so grateful for missionary work and miracles.

Love you heaps!

Sister Baker xxx

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