Monday, July 6, 2015

Old Friends and a LOT of Progress

Elder Swan & Elder Paddock
This weekend in particular has been a crazy few days!  Happy 4th!  

photo from Gene Juan

photo from Gene Juan

Elder Paddock & Gene Juan

Saturday, Javier, one of the Less-Actives in our branch, called us and said, "Hey!  I think I've got someone here that might be interested in the Gospel!  He's been asking a lot of questions lately so you should come over and meet him before soccer!  Sound good?"  Of course that sounded good so we went right over!  After sitting on the couch for a couple three minutes, in walks the one and only Elder Juan!  To say I was surprised would be an understatement.  It was so great to see him!  He stuck around all day and even came to church with us the next day!  Not only he showed up this weekend, but Hermana Thompson also did along with all her family!  It was great to see her too! 

All I can even really think about was our amazing lesson with Jose last night, so let me tell you about that.
We felt it would be a great idea to take Brother Flory, our Branch Mission Leader with us to see him.  Luckily, Brother Flory wasn't terribly busy and was able to come out!  We had left Jose with the commitment to pray about getting baptized, so the very first thing we did was ask him about that.  He talked about how he'd been praying but maybe he wasn't getting an answer.  We talked about how he could recognize his answer as he continues to act.  We talked about the growth he's been feeling and the things he's been learning and the changes he's been making ever since we started teaching him 18 months ago.  We talked about how he's recognized a difference between how he feels on the days he reads and how he feels on the days he doesn't.   He opened up to us and told us about a few of his doubts and questions, each of which Brother Flory answered and cleared up so much better than either Elder Swan or I could have.  All of a sudden Mosiah 18:8-10 came flying into my head, so we opened up to that.   After talking about verses 8 and 9, about how helping others, keeping the commandments,  and standing as a witness of God at all times, and in all things, and in all places (Our Baptismal Covenant), we read verse 10 where it says, 
"Now I say unto you, if this be the desire of your hearts, what have you against being baptized in the name of the Lord as a witness before him that ye have entered into a covenant with him, that ye will serve him and keep his commandments, that he may pour out his Spirit more abundantly upon you?"
After about a 3 minute pause, Jose just looked up and said, "The truth is I'm just scared I'll mess up."  We then bore testimony of the strength we receive from the Gift of the Holy Ghost that it will help us to not mess up and strengthen us to continue onward.   Elder Swan then boldly told Jose that he already knew that these things were true, to which Jose nodded.  I just looked at him and asked, "So will you be baptized, Hermano?" 
After another long pause he said, "When's the day?"  
Oh my goodness I'm so happy.  I've seen so much progress with him!  We set him.... well it was more like he set himself for the 8th of August and I'm positive he'll make it!  I hope I stay this transfer!  

So many good things are happening here!  Its such a great time to be a missionary!  
I love  you and I hope you have a great week!

Lots of Love,
Elder Zachary Paddock

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