Monday, January 9, 2012

Week 45: Good thing the bike thing didn't last long

Buenos Dias! It has been another action packed week here in St. George. I feel like if I was told I was going to be in one area for the rest of my mission, this is where I would want to stay. This is where all the action is at in the mission. The work is good, we wake up to the temple outside our front door every morning, and we get to talk to all the other Elders and Sisters down here. We are in the "entertainment capital" of the Utah St. George Mission.

Last preparation day I finally got to go to the driving range and golf for a bit. When I started off, I was horrible, but after a few swings I was able to "shake off the rust" as another golfer next to me said. I'm thinking the following preparation day we will have to get out and play. It has been way too long!

For the most part this week was spent preparing our investigators for baptism on Sunday. After many phone calls, visits, and me pulling my hair out we got everyone set to get their interviews done on Wednesday night. We were at the VC (visitor center) from 6-9pm doing baptism related stuff. I ended up doing several interviews for other companionships in our district and our investigators had their interviews done. Amidst the chaos of having everyone there (including President Leonard who had to do one of our interviews) one of our investigator's children decided to pick up a statue and throw it, shattering it into pieces. Let me just say it was a crazy but worthwhile evening. In total we had 7 interviews done and I'm pretty sure that is a record for the most interviews in one night. I don't think that will be broken anytime soon. :)

Because of transfers and the influx of new missionaries we were left without a car for the first half or so of the week. This meant we had to resort to biking everywhere. I have to admit at first I was excited because I wanted the exercise but after the first day I was ready for a car again... ALMOST as bad as Elder Valdez was. Elder Valdez, bless his heart, was trying hard to make it up the hills but I was focused on getting to our appointments on time and had the tendency to get a little ahead of him at times. It was by the grace of God that the mission happened to get one car in late in the week and we got the car.

We finished off the week with three baptisms and two set for the following weekend. It was a great baptismal service and I can't really describe how rewarding it was to step in the font and baptize all three people one right after the other. Nothing can describe the feeling you have after coming out of the baptismal font feeling a little cold but having that radiating warmth from within which is the feeling of the Spirit. I love it!

As I was sitting in my chair during personal studies one day during this week I was thinking of all the good that are happening right now. I thought back to the Book Of Mormon and the story of Ammon. In Alma 26 Ammon was having a lot of success on his mission and this is what he said, "
1 But Ammon said unto him: I do not aboast in my own strength, nor in my own wisdom; but behold, my bjoy is full, yea, my heart is brim with cjoy, and I will rejoice in my God.

12 Yea, I know that I am anothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will bnot boast of myself, but I will cboast of my God, for in his dstrength I can do all ethings; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever.

13 Behold, how many thousands of our brethren has he loosed from the pains of ahell; and they are brought to bsing redeeming love, and this because of the power of his word which is in us, therefore have we not great reason to rejoice?

14 Yea, we have reason to praise him forever, for he is the Most High God, and has loosed our brethren from the achains of hell." Right now it is easy to get puffed up in the pride of our hearts because of the miracles we are seeing just as Ammon saw. God has given Elder Valdez and I much to rejoice in, but I don't share these stories to show the success we have. Rather, I share these stories as a testament that this work is true and just. This church is true. No other church is growing faster than the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. This church is the Lord's kingdom here on the earth today. I bare my testimony of this. I know I am fulfilling promises I made to my brothers and sisters in the pre-earth life that I would find them and share this message with them. This is the dream. Vaya con Dios.

God is love,

Elder Bennion

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