This week I wanted to take some time and talk about all my investigators to catch you all up.
So Andres and Carolina Barrera first. We've challenged them to be baptized soooo many times and they always accept but then never go to church. So my companion and I changed tactics with them. Before, we were preparing lessons and then teaching and discussing the topic with them. Now, we are letting them choose the topic and then discussing it. We want them to be actively studying and participating in the lesson and not just thinking to themselves. So, we gave them a sheet of questions of the soul and asked them to pick one for us to prepare. They picked question number 3: In what do I benefit from Jesus Christ? So we talked about this and I don't remember the exact thoughts we shared but in the end we invited them to repent of their sins and be baptized. Andres told us, "I'm going to be very clear with you guys. I want to be baptized because I know it's true. I don't want to be married to Carolina though. We are together because it's best for the kid we have in common." We asked if there was another person either one of them have been seeing and he said no. He just thinks that getting married without loving the person isn't right and that separating isn't right either because the child would be the one to suffer. So he doesn't want to go to church because he's sinning if he lives in the same house with a women he's not married to. And he can't get baptized if he doesn't get married/separated and go to church. So, we invited them to pray together about this and seek counsel from the Lord concerning the best way to repent for them. I hope they get their answers soon. I shared with them that when we found them, we happened to stumble upon him fixing his motorcycle and that Elder D. happens to be an expert at motorcycles. That was the day that we hiked up to the top of the mountain to contact someone up there and then hiked back down disappointed only to find Andres and Carolina in the most perfect of circumstances. God knows when and where people need help and so he puts his servants into our lives to help us. I know he put me and Elder D. in the right place and time to find them.
Family Tavora has been struggling to get their divorces through but I'm still trying. Then they can get married. They also expressed to us that they've been having a rough time with their children. They have three boys. One is 16 and then the other two are younger, like 8 and 5. The 16 year old has been rebelling a little bit and doesn't want to go to church anymore and the two little ones are just loud, shouting, crying babies. So I told her she needed to talk to you, Mom because you've dealt with 4 teenagers and have one pending still. ;D (OR TWO if we count 18 y/o Spencer! HA HA HA!)
We found another 14 year old to teach this week. We explained the Plan of Salvation and I've never seen a teenager so attentive before and asking questions and getting excited before. She recently has been going to the catholic church and told us she had a topic to prepare of her choice for a church something this past Saturday. She then said she was going to share all that she learned from us to all of her church... I hope that went well... We're going to go visit her again this week and see what happened.
We received a new reference from Hno Zelaya Castro (lider misional) and we've taught this family a bunch. They have no money, no job, aren't married, have one kid, and want to change their lives around. It's sad that it takes till the depths of poverty sometimes to compel people to change. The good thing is that they don't have any problems with the Word of Wisdom. The bad thing is, they don't have money and so they can't get married. The mission isn't paying for any part of marriages now to help people get baptized. Every penny has to be earned and sacrificed. This is a little barrier so we don't baptized people and then have more less-actives. It's a great idea, just makes it harder though to be baptizing at the level the mission is expecting.
Leonel still hasn't been able to get to church because of the pain in his side and we still don't know if he can get baptized because he's hiding his past from us. We can't help him if he doesn't tell us what he's done. He told us this week though, "Why do people not listen to you guys? You guys preach Faith, Repentance, and Baptism, and Jesus Christ... What else could people want?" He told us that what we teach is all true. I hope we can work with him to help him progress in the next few weeks.
I just had a few thoughts to share as well other than investigators. In Spanish, the word "mejorar" or "to get better" contains the word "orar" which means "to pray". If we pray, things can only get better. When we put our trust in the Lord, miracles happen and he can change our hearts.
The other thought isn't of consequence, just a cool thought. There were 12 apostles called by Jesus in his mortal ministry and the one that betrayed him was Judas. At the same time, the Jews or tribe of Judah betrayed Jesus Christ out of all the twelve tribes. Just some symbolism I hadn't thought of before.
I'm going to send some letters in the mail for Christmas too, really soon! Don't know when but I plan to have them there for Christmas day!
We also can talk on Skype this year!!! President Bowler changed that rule!!! So Skype it is!!!
Got to go!
PS: I'm glad everyone is safe and I'm sad to hear about the death of Brother Barrus in the ward. It's sad that happened. Love you guys! Lindsay, Get better! :D