Dear Mom and Dad,
What a week. J was baptized, and it was amazing, and Elder G and I are staying together again for 6 weeks more (making him my companion for the longest amount of time so far). But we are excited to keep on working together, there is a lot to be done in these next 6 weeks!
First off--J. On Monday of last week, we had a fun Family Home Evening with An and A, one of my favorite families in the ward. We watched a little video called "Treasure in Heaven" about John Tanner, a man who sacrificed a lot in the early history of the church. While we were commenting about the movie afterward, J said at one point, "I think I need to keep the commandments even if God doesn´t bless me right away, because that´s not always how it works." It was amazing to see this kind of faith in someone who so recently is coming into the gospel. Then we laughed a lot while trading stories about who was clumsier in his mission, An or I.
Her baptism on Saturday was such a beautiful moment... I asked her several times how she felt, and she always said, "I don´t really know how to describe it." But I could definitely see her excitement. When she was baptized, when she came back up out of the water again, she gave out a little gasp, like she was really surprised about something. There was a new light in her eyes, as well, that hadn´t been there before. I would say that, on a scale of one to ten of how happy she is, she probably hit an 11 the days of her baptism and confirmation.
That same weekend, we got to know her family. Her dad is hilarious, in a really sarcastic kind of way. Her mom is really nice, and her cousin (who also lives with them) is quite, and runs marathons. They aren´t quite as ready to receive the gospel as J was, but the mom still said, 2 or 3 times, "we´ll see if we end up joining too..."
Another highlight of this week were interchanges with Elder Y, one of the assistants to the mission president. It was really neat how, during the course of the day together, every single one of the things that had been bothering me was resolved, from my questions about my own ability to do certain things to my doubts about receiving revelation. The other highlight was doing missionary work with a car--like a taste of a mission in NC.
We had a really fantastic lesson with Y this week. We had noticed that, even though she always goes to church, she usually left before the 3rd hour, Relief Society (and Primary for her kids). We wanted to talk about the Restoration and invite her to stay for all three hours, but when we got into her house the lesson took a completely different track. We started talking about families, and about preparing N and G for baptism and missions, and how happy she has been to see her kids fight over who gets to say the prayer at lunch. At last, she decided that she needed to stay all 3 hours so that her kids could learn more in primary. It was amazing how the spirit guided us away from the lesson that we had planned out to the lesson that we really needed to teach.
In other news, M is still doing great, going to church and every other activity he possibly can. We introduced him to the G, a great family in the ward who has kids his age, and he had a blast with them as well!
Viviendo el sueño,
Elder Jason Ray