Sister Blankenship got a milder form of what I had last week.
Which means I had a minor relapse into the world of Kleenex.
But she had ibuprofen.
So we were mostly productive this week.
We had two investigators (people learning about the Church) drop us (they don't want to meet with us anymore) this week. Sad face.
Our Stake is doing a 40-day fast for missionary opportunities. We have one family (or more) fasting every day starting last week and going until two days before Christmas. It has been amazing to see how the members of the stake are receiving promptings for who and how to share the gospel with their friends and neighbors.
We came across a mom this week who told us she has twin daughters who aren't baptized and she wants them to be taught and baptized... by the end of the year. Miracles? They totally happen.
Baptism is just the beginning. Baptism is an ordinance, which is an outward expression of us making a covenant, or promise, with God. Sometimes, we run across parents, family members, or friends who think that those they have been sharing the gospel with have to be perfect and know everything before they can even think of making such a commitment with God. While wanting to be prepared for making that promise is important, there comes a point where faith must take a role.
We can't know everything - even in our entire life here on earth. We just can't. But we can feel the Holy Ghost testify to our hearts that this is the true gospel of Jesus Christ. And when we feel that testimony grow, that is when we begin to be prepared for these covenants with our Heavenly Father. We cannot afford to put off such important commitments. When we are living the gospel, when we feel the Spirit, and when we have gained that witness of truth, that is when we are prepared. We don't need to know every story in the Bible, or know every detail of Christ's life, or completely understand the words of Isaiah. It all comes down to one question:
"When you are baptized, you covenant with God that you are willing to take upon yourself the name of Christ and keep His commandments throughout your life. Are you ready to make this covenant and strive to be faithful to it?" -final baptismal interview question
Baptism is the gate on the path toward the temple. We're not done until we reach the celestial kingdom, sealed together as eternal families. Baptism is the first step along that path. We continue learning and growing along that path. We ultimately go to the temple and make more covenants to lead us to the celestial kingdom.
I love the simplicity of the gospel!
Pardon my soapbox.
If I had time, I would go on another soap box about obedience.
98% of problems in missionary life are due to obedience.
It's a simple principle: do what God asks you to do, whether that's in the scriptures or as revealed to His modern-day prophets and Priesthood leaders, and He'll bless you with miracles.
Sister Blankenship told me about a Young Women's leader whose family had a vase of rose stems - the flower removed and the thorns very much still on the stem. Each person would then take a stem and share the thorns of the year that they were grateful for. How grateful are we for the thorns in our lives?
There have been so many hard moments and so many miracles this past year. I still can't believe I've been a missionary for so long! Thanksgiving last year seems like it was just a few weeks ago. I am so grateful for who my Heavenly Father is shaping me into. It's been a refiner's fire, but I will forever treasure these moments when I had to completely trust in Him. He has taken care of me and blessed me beyond measure. I know this is His gospel! He is in charge! When we turn ourselves over to Him, He will lead us in the path that is best for us.
Isn't it funny how day by day nothing seems to change, but looking back everything is different? #missionmotto
Love you all like a turkey loves to see the sunrise on black Friday! -Sister Blankenship's mom
Go to christmas.mormon.org on November 25th and watch the video on the 28th.
Be excited :)
This is the Muddy Gutter band. Fabulously classic bluegrass entertainment at the High Priest social in one of our wards. Basically, a dinner for all the people over the age of 50. It was a blast.
This is my little corner of life!