Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Elder Ward

 These past couple weeks have been full of really great, really rewarding experiences. I have felt immensely blessed since the end of July, as seemingly miracle after miracle has been coming our way.
On Sunday July 31, one of our investigators got baptized. It was really great to see Sister Tintin finally commit. We have been working with her for a while, and she has had her share of ups, and downs. But, she finally put her doubts and fears aside and committed to go forward. After she was baptized she bore a great testimony. It was kind of all over the place, and you could tell it was her first time doing something like that, but you could tell it was so sincere. She was glowing with the spirit, and it was great to hear her try and explain what she was feeling, only being able to say "it feels warm." She is very young, 23, and has a lot to learn, but she has that confirmation of the spirit and that is what is most important. We were also asked to play the musical number at the baptism. I played the guitar, and Elder Cheung and I sang Sweet Hour of Prayer. Apparently we were a hit because we are singing at Sister Sheryl's this Sunday too...
On August 6, Sister Lida got baptized. She was very prepared from the beginning. She was looking for change, and recognized quickly that baptism would help her move forward in life, to forgive, forget, and be forgiven herself. As far as investigators really understanding the miracle of baptism she seemed to understand it best of all. She spent a long time praying before the service, and seemed to always have her head bowed in prayer during any spare moment she found leading up to the actual ordinance. She told us that it was everything she hoped for. I'm thankful that the power of the Savior's Atonement has the power to cleanse us and help us start over again. We all need a fresh start, and we can get it anytime we truly repent. The spirit is really impressing the joy and peace that a fresh start can bring with each baptism I get to see.
This week has been full of mission tour. Elder Watson, and Elder Gong of the Quorum of the Seventy, and counselors in the Asia Area Presidency were training our mission about how to recognize and follow the spirit this week. The office staff met with Elder Watson on Monday, half of the missionaries came in for the "Mission Tour" on Tuesday, and The other half on Wednesday. Elder Cheung had to translate so we were able to go to both 7 hour sessions. It was really amazing to be trained and taught by general authorities. Each time I was in the same room as them there was a special spirit present. One thing Elder Gong shared with us that has stuck with me was about "being quick to observe" (Mormon 1:2) there are very many things in the world that call for our attention, and if we are not quick to observe the thing that is most important can go completely unnoticed. He then said the spirit do not speak loudly, we have to listen and observe carefully to feel it, but WHEN we feel it we will know it, and we will never forget it. It was a good reminder to me to step back and focus on the more spiritual side of things, and I have noticed a huge difference even though it has just been one day.
I love you all and hope you are well and happy!
Here are some pictures from the baptisms the first one is Sister Tintin, and the second is Sister Lida