Tuesday, April 16, 2013

We All Have Work...

Dear All,

This has been another great week. We've had some fantastic opportunities to be able to teach, learn, and help people come unto Christ. After all, that's what we're here for!

Things have been pretty uneventful this week, with one exception: We will be having a baptism this Sunday!!! Candi, the wife of one of our best recent converts here in the area, decided to be baptized, with the help of our Father in Heaven. We challenged her to baptism, she said she wanted to wait, but then we challenged her (and her father-in-law) to pray and ask God if the 21st of April was the correct date. They live 3 doors down from the Yumán family, so we had the lesson in the Yumán's house. It was awesome, the Spirit was so strong, and Candi told us about her experience. She said "I didn't realize that God could respond so quickly!" She prayed, she received her answer, and though not all her doubts are gone, she is still happy and has made the firm decision to be baptized. I love being a missionary, because we get to see firsthand the miracles God works in our lives, and in those of the people we teach.

We also brought some of our recent converts out to visit this week: Alejandro Yumán and Estuardo Arroyo came out to visit with us, and it was really cool, because no testimony has a more powerful effect on an investigator than that of a recently baptized member. It's all still fresh in their heart, and they are super enthusiastic to be able to testify of the truth with all their hearts. It's fantastic to be able to see. Even if they're just "patojos" (kids) it's still fantastic, because they're so honest about the things that they know are true. Alejandro told us about how when he started to read the Book of Mormon, he felt a change inside him. Before, he would never go to church, or read the scriptures. But now he loves it, and he can hardly wait to turn 18 and become a missionary! And his parents told us that he used to be the first one to say "not me!" when they said "We're going to church!" And though I haven't told him this, I saw a visible change in him. When I first arrived, he was super quiet, and almost never smiled. Now, he smiles all the time. He's really experienced the "mighty change of heart" that Alma talks about, and you can see it just looking at him. The rest of the family has experienced similar changes, and they told us about what their extended family said about them when they saw them after their baptism. It's so cool to experience firsthand the tender mercies of the Lord.

"Wherefore, weary not of doing good, for ye are laying the foundations of a great work, and out of small things proceedeth that which is great."
-Doctrine and Covenants 64:33

This is a true principle that has helped me in my mission. There's no such thing as a small part to play in the work, because the work is made up of many little building blocks, as are our personal spiritual lives. Some may be Zone Leaders, some District Leaders, some Assistants to the President, but the work is done by everyone. Everyone has something to offer, so even if you feel small, or as if you don't have anything to offer, THAT IS SATAN TRYING TO DECEIVE YOU. He wants you to doubt your self-worth and take away your self-esteem. DON'T LET HIM IN. He will only destroy you, but God will bless you with miracles if you only have faith in yourself. As says the song from the movie "The Prince of Egypt," There can be miracles when you believe. Believe in God. Believe in Christ. Believe in the cleansing power of His Atonement. And last of all, believe in yourself. If you don't believe in yourself, the Lord can't help you very much, but once you have faith, there can be miracles.

Take tons of care. I love you all!

Elder Banks

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