Monday, December 16, 2013

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas!--December 16, 2013

Hello family!  It has been another BUSY week here in Angola.
It is BITTER COLD here now!  Still humid, but only in the low teens most of the time, so it really cuts through you!  We got about 10" of snow this past week, so it has been an adventure driving through it!  Speaking of driving... I FINALLY got to drive this week!  It was therapeutic... I've missed driving SO MUCH!  The six-month drought is over though, because we drove all over the place this week.
We had a GREAT chapel tour with one of our investigators named W___.  He's 19 and very open to us.  We finally got him in the church building, and taught him there where the Spirit could be stronger.  We're excited to see him come!  We also taught the Plan of Salvation to one of our other investigators, K___, who is in a part-member/less-active family. His less-active wife wants to change her life and start coming back to church now that they have a daughter, and K____ is genuinely interested and very supportive, so we have high hopes for that family!
We also had a VERY successful Branch Christmas Party!  It was AWESOME!  ALL of the less-actives and part-member families that we have been working with came!  It was a huge success! :)  They all felt super welcome, and seemed to have a good time.  It was SO encouraging to see those we're working closely with to re-activate come and commit to come back to church.  Unfortunately, due to the whopping amount of snow that came on Saturday, church attendance was pretty sparse.... But we got to sing in sacrament!  Again!  Haha this time with the senior couple.  I LOVE THEM!
This past week, we had a WONDERFUL zone conference training by Elder Perkins of the seventy who was doing a "mission tour".  He encouraged us to erase the word "meeting" from our vocabulary and replace it with "revelatory experience".  In addition, he challenged us at the beginning of the training to write down two questions that we would like to receive and answer to, and see if they would be answered throughout the day.  It was such a cool experience!  It truly was revelatory, and I was able to have both of my questions answered in ways that I hadn't expected.  One of the highlights of that experience was recognizing how our prayers are answered.  This can be related to the Brother of Jared and his experiences:
- Sometimes, when we ask for help, the Lord will just SOLVE the problem or DO what we need for us, like when the Brother of Jared asked how to direct the barges.  He ( the Lord) said, "don't worry about it. I'll take care of it. I'll blow the winds and direct the barges for you."
- Oftentimes, when we ask for help or a solution to our problems, He will illuminate the solution, but require ACTION on our part, like when the Brother of Jared asked about how to get air, he was told how, but had to ACT for himself on what the Lord showed to him.
- Other times, when we go to Heavenly Father seeking an answer or guidance, He asks, "What would ye have me do"? and we have to come up with a solution ourselves, like the Brother of Jared did in response to his light problem.
Out of those three different ways, it sure would be nice if we could always have a "don't worry about it; I'll take care of it" answer, but out of the three situations, which caused the most personal growth?  Which required faith, thinking, and determination?  Heavenly Father wants to help us, but He also wants us to grow.  Sometimes, we must be left to come up with a faith-filled solution on our own before getting a confirmation from our Father in Heaven.
MERRY ALMOST CHRISTMAS!  This is the best time of the year!  I hope you all have a wonderful week and STAY WARM!  I love you!
Love, Jason
- Leaving the Mission!  Haha our area borders Michigan, so we thought it would be fun to take a "rogue" picture... Do you like what those signs say...?  Ha, I guess there are a bunch of Meth heads here.
- Minute to Win it at the Christmas party!

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