That subject was supposed to be sung to the tune of the Silver Bells Christmas song. Oh man, definitely an interesting week. Really slow. I finally got to teach an investigator, just one, and it went well but she is kind of hard to work with because she has been meeting with the missionaries forever and just won't commit to baptism. We're seeing her again this week though so hopefully it will go better.
Because a lot of our area is the naval base, so many people are busy and out of town around the holiday. It's really hard to catch people at home or that have time to come on a church tour. Last transfer they baptized pretty much their whole teaching pool so we don't have very many progressing investigators to work with. Our focus is entirely on finding and reactivating and it is really hard. I definitely have learned a lot from it though.
The biggest thing that I had to realize was what faith actually is. It's interesting, when you ask someone what faith is they don't really know how to explain it. That's why the scriptures are so amazing. Alma 32:21 gives the best definition of faith I have ever seen. It is things hoped for, and I think that's what stood out to me the most this week. Sometimes it seems like things just logically won't happen, as much as you want them to, but you still hope for them and by hoping and going out and working, you are showing your faith. Yesterday in church (all 6 hours of it plus ward council) we heard the same lesson, Exaltation from the Gospel Principles manual (which, by the way, is an awesome book, I used to teach from it and I love it), three times. I definitely needed to hear it that many times because finally by the last one I think I got it. I loved what someone said about faith and how that applies to our exaltation: Faith is a principle of action. You can never truly have faith until you are willing to act on it. Every time we do something like baptism, where we go through a saving ordinance, there are actions associated with it. We must always continue to show faith. That's why enduring to the end is part of the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is not a checklist, but a cycle that we go through of having faith, repenting, being baptized and taking the sacrament, relying on the Holy Ghost, and building faith again. It is so important to just learn to trust God. I mean, he's pretty smart, so it makes sense to listen to Him. D+C 6:36. There's a reason I put that on my plaque.
I just read Jake's email and here was his philosophical point for the week: "if you're worried about how cold it looks outside, just put on your best clothes, and you'll get warmer as you keep walking." So true. My first few nights I was just freezing. This last week we had one night where we just had to get back in the car and defrost before we could do anything else. It was painful. But, other than that, I feel like if I mentally just say, "Yep, it is ridiculously cold out there for me right now, but President wants us out there 5-7 every night so I'm going to do it" then I'm not as cold. For reals. Also, when you do things to help other people because it's the right thing to do even though it means you will end up dead tired the next day, the Lord blesses you with extra energy. I have felt like that the last few days. While we are out working, I don't feel that tired, but as soon as we get home, I fall asleep trying to write in my journal. I've been doing really good on that, by the way. I haven't missed a day so far. Ok, well I have, but I catch up the next day so there is an entry every day.
Just want you all to know I love you and I appreciate your support. It really does make a big difference for me. Write me soon :)
Sister Sara Chronister
4007-D Bridgeport Way West
University Place, WA 98466-4330