Monday, July 25, 2016

Happy Pioneer Day

Happy Pioneer Day! (Yesterday)

I really enjoyed Pioneer Day yesterday. The main reason was a personal
story that our Ward mission leader shared. He read out of "our
heritage" and then shared his story. He talked about his conversion to
the church. He was 16 when he joined, and talked about because he grew
up here in Texas, he isn't directly connected to the pioneers who
crossed the plains, but how he is the pioneer for his family and for
his future generations. In sacrament meeting I looked around at all
the first generation converts who are currently pioneering their
futures. Their courage is great!

On another note, the work here in Tidwell is flowing smoothly. We are
working a lot and I didn't know I could sweat this much!

We taught a lot of our investigators, and tried to help them progress
toward baptism. We tried to get in contact with our investigator who
we met a couple weeks ago. He was super pumped about getting baptized
but we haven't heard from him since then! He's disappeared! But in
trying to contact him we ended up gaining a new investigator out of
one of his neighbors down the street. We talked to him while he was
outside getting his mail. He was a little surprised to see us, but as
we talked we could tell he's gone through some hardships recently. His
family situation isn't the best and he liked what we taught concerning
families. We taught him twice this week.

We found a super prepared lady this week. We were knocking on a
particular street because we kept hearing there were Mormons on it
somewhere. We kept checking our records and couldn't find anyone. So
we decided to knock the whole street until we found these "lost
sheep". One of the houses was this lady. She was really hesitant to
talk with us, but as soon as we showed her a picture of the priesthood
being restored she said "I need to learn about that!" She is really
interested now. We're teaching her again today, we hope it works out

We also had a funny experience with a non member we found who attended
church last week. We had been asked to try a less active on a
particular street. The suggested person wasn't home, and we saw there
was another lady on the same street who was marked as a less active so
we decided to give it a try. The member's non-member daughter
answered. We talked to her for a while and found out she's currently
taking care of her mom because of dialysis. She also told us about
church last week. We were totally surprised because we had no idea she
was there and here we are talking about this! We called up the R.S.
President after the lesson and asked if this person was present. She
said yes and had no idea she wasn't a member. It was really sweet!

I hope y'all are doing well. There's a really cool insight to 1 Nephi 1:1

"1 I, Nephi, having been born of goodly parents, therefore I was
taught somewhat in all the learning of my father; and having seen many
afflictions in the course of my days, nevertheless, having been highly
favored of the Lord in all my days; yea, having had a great knowledge
of the goodness and the mysteries of God, therefore I make a record of
my proceedings in my days."

Nephi was highly favored of the Lord. Anyone who's read the Book of
Mormon knows this. BUT even though the Lord loved him and had a lot of
trust and respect for him, he still saw "many afflictions" throughout
his life. Here's some more: Rev. 3:19

"19 As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten.."

Just as with Nephi, the Lord loves us enough to give us trials.
Remembering this next time you feel afflicted and burdened down might
help. It's out of His love for us!

Elder Blackburn

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