Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Week 35: Baptizing Alma Style

Family and friends it has been another great week in sunny southern Utah. Probably the best week I've ever had on the mission thus far. A lot of great things happened this week that helped put into perspective that I am still growing and learning. Imagine that! Sometimes it is hard to see our personal progress or know what we need to improve but this week there just seemed to be a lot of little lessons I learned and grew from. Sometimes we get so preoccupied with the daily tasks we lose sight of different important aspects of our lives we need to improve.

As far as the missionary work is concerned and the mission, I've never been happier! I'm really hitting my stride out here and living every minute of being a missionary. This past week I'm pretty sure we taught more lessons than any other companionship in the mission. We taught 51 lessons, Saturday Elder Hayden baptized a man named Fernando who we both taught in Washington, we had 12 investigators at church, and the Romero family got baptized last night! I had the privilege of baptizing Juana and I cannot describe how rewarding that was. Juana is the grandma of the family and I've never taught anyone as prepared as she was to accept the gospel and be baptized. Funny story about her baptism. I got in the font and showed her where to put her hands, said the prayer, and baptized her. Only thing is I about pulled an Alma style baptism. haha I was neck deep in the water. I pulled Juana back up and Elder Hayden was just smiling. We had been talking about Alma style baptisms before so it made it that much more funny. If you don't know what an "Alma style baptism" is read Mosiah 18:14. :)

I've always had this phobia about baptizing investigators. Maybe it is selfish and petty of me but I never have wanted to be the one doing the baptismal ordinance and getting in the water. I just have never wanted to baptize someone who I thought could one day go inactive. I think I never wanted that responsibility to fall on my shoulders. I also felt that a ward member would be that friend they would always have in the church. I still feel ward members are a first option but when Juana asked me to baptize her I couldn't say no. I just love this family!

As if things couldn't get any better we have a couple named Javier and Pearla who are getting baptized this coming Sunday and a second couple getting married and then baptized the Sunday after that! :D It is nothing short of a miracle to see how many people the Lord has been preparing to accept His true and living gospel. When we read the Book of Mormon, attend church, and sincerely pray to know if it is true there is no way to deny this divine message which I know to be true.

It is through the small and simple things that the Lord brings to pass His grand works. Just as a great oak tree starts from small and humble beginnings. So do we start with a small seed of knowledge which grows over the months, years, and decades which we nourish it. "Now ye may suppose that this is afoolishness in me; but behold I say unto you, that by bsmall and simple things are great things brought to pass; and small means in many instances doth confound the wise." (Alma 37:6) It is by the small and simple things which the Lord answers our questions and teaches. One of the greatest blessings of being baptized is receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost. It is through the Great Teacher, which our Father in Heaven leads and guides us. Replace fear with faith and remember it is by the small and simple things which God answers our prayers. I know He lives, more than ever. Vaya con Dios.

God is love,
Elder Bennion

P.S. Cameron sent a couple pictures. I will post those later!

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