Tuesday, March 17, 2015

WEEK 24 "Fake it Until you Make it"

Friends and family,
The past week has been an absolute success! Myself and Elder Fernandez applied everything we had so well this week and saw some really neat things happen with our investigators and ourselves. We got the highest number of lessons that I have gotten since being out here. We had some amazing lessons and some really powerful witnesses that this work is directed by the Lord.
On Tuesday, we went into our daily schedule of both personal and companionship study as usual. As part of our companionship study we go over the day in which we had planned the night before and make lesson plans for each individual appointment. We find and focus our lessons on the principles in Preach my Gospel, but we decide what principles to use from each lesson and how to apply them and what scriptures to use as well. We came to our appointment as 6:30pm, the Mulanom family. A quick background, they are what we call the "eternal investigator." They are very welcoming to the missionaries and have been taught for a couple years now. The only thing holding them back form being baptized, is the fear of changing religions. The first time we went and taught them they told us in detail, pretty much the entire restoration. We have been trying to come up with some different lessons to help them accept the gospel by talking about faith, reading the Book of Mormon, teaching the first vision, praying as a family etc. As previously stated, we were making a lesson plan for them. We decided  we needed to focus on the family and why they are important. Both myself and Elder Fernandez started searching for scriptures we could use from the Book of Mormon. After no success, Elder Fernandez placed his book on the desk and then looked to me to see if I had found one. As I searched I came up with nothing. We looked over the scriptures in Preach My Gospel and none of them gave us the result we were looking for. We sat in silence for a second, and then breaking the silence, Elder Fernandez said, "As my trainer, I'm looking to you because I know you can make this lesson happen, I've seen you do it before." I laughed a little and the told him that if this was going to work out, it wasn't because of me, but because we are worthy of the Lord's help. We had both tried our best and after coming up with nothing I just said that we need to rely on the Lord and go into the lesson acting as though we knew what we were doing as to not lose trust in this investigator. We went it both clueless of how to start it and not knowing what to do. We opened the lesson with a prayer and the thoughts just came. I opened my mouth and it was filled. I handed it over to Elder Fernandez and opened my scriptures. I had a feeling to turn to 1 Nephi 2 and I did. There on the page literally bright than every other verse was verse 4. "And it came to pass that he departed into the wilderness. And he left his house, and the land of his inheritance, and his gold, and his silver, and his precious things, and took nothing with him, save it were his family, and provisions, and tents, and departed into the wilderness." Elder Fernandez did an amazing job of getting the spirit there and everyone paying attention. I shared verse four and then began to explain it, not having any idea how to talk about it. I told them that Lehi left behind all the worldly comforts but took with him his FAMILY and only the necessities to care for they're NEEDS. I passed it off again and for a second time Elder Fernandez taught with absolute power. It ended up being a successful lesson and we asked them they're thoughts on it. They said that with that lesson alone they now have a desire to be baptized and the fear is lessened.
President Peterson has taught that we as missionaries sometimes need to fake it until we make it, or in other words rely on the Lord and He'll make things happen. This promise stands, "Seek not to declare my word, but first seek to obtain my word, and then shall your tongue be loosed; then, if you desire, you shall have my Spirit and my word, yea, the power of God unto the convincing of men." (D&C 11:21) We had a couple other lessons very similar to this one the past week. Always rely on the Lord in all that you do and he will deliver you in times of need.
Please pray for them as well as Jemil and Marvin, Drio family, Reneboy, and Sister Rosita. Thank you for your prayers, they are being answered. I love you all.

Elder O'Neil

 some kind of spider bite I got haha :)