Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Update from Georgia 9/22/14

Hey ya'll!
It's been another great week in Loganville. I wish I had some awesome stories or cool miracles to share with you. It's still exciting here though! With this week and next week our ward will have a total of 7 baptisms! We'll be having one with our investigator Nikki this Friday, the elders investigator Deonte will be baptized on Saturday, and a girl named Autumn they're teaching will be baptized on Sunday. So one each day of the weekend! I think I'm more excited for next weekend. The Hernandez family is getting baptized on October 4th after general conference. I have grown to love that family so much! We're getting so stoked for that day! 
We're also very excited for Anel SIsic's baptism on October 3rd. This will probably be one of the most memorial baptisms on my mission. He's taken discussions from missionaries for a very long time now, and its been really cool to see him really progress the past few months and see the spirit change him. Not gonna lie, we had our doubts if this would really happen, but we're holding onto our faith and hope, and know that it will:)

So we had a good discussion with our bishop, who showed us this fun object lesson this last week. With the number of baptisms growing steadily all over the world, and especially in our ward, we're all seeing that retention is now very vital. He took us outside in the church parking lot and showed us this object lesson one evening. he had this string that was 2600 inches long. and stretched over the whole length of the parking lot. Each inch represented the number of times we go to church in the span of 50 years. He had us estimate or guess how long the average person investigates the church. We agreed over the time of about 2-3 months. Well during that time we are trying to welcome them into the church and fellowship them as much as we can. But it seems after they're baptized or stop investigating, members kind of forget about them and the fellowship stops. Well on the string, the 2-3 month period compared to the 50 years was nothing! But he mentioned that if we continue to fellowship and focus on the retention in their first year of being a member, using the new member progress report, its shown that 90% more will stay strong in the church. I don't know how accurate that is, but I will believe it! The main goal we want all to have is the temple, and we're helping each other reach that goal. The new member progress report focuses on getting recent converts to the temple, and the members have to help them get there. I LOVE how the Lord is hastening His work and my perspective on the work has changed. I'm focusing more on having an eternal perspective, keeping the temple in my sights, and helping others have that perspective as well.  I hope each of you have that same perspective and focus on getting your family or others to the temple:) The blessings this work brings are infinite and so grand. God is just showing forth His love and His great plan for us through these blessings. 

We also have been practicing teaching lessons to active members now. President  Bennion shared with us a message from Pres. Boyd K. Packer a few weeks ago about missionary work. Truly, we as missionaries are called to teach. That is our calling and we have to abide by it. There's the finding, the baptizing and fellowshipping, and the teaching, all are parts of missionary work. We're called to proclaim the gospel, to treasure up the knowledge and the words of Christ, and our most important duty is to teach. Therefore, President Bennion is having us teach one of the 5 lessons in preach my gospel to the members at our dinner appts, and the members are to role play with us! Well if any of you have served a mission, you'll always remember role playing and how much you love it. I have grown to really love role playing to be honest, its effective:) So the members are to act as one of their non member friends, or as an investigator, as we teach them the lesson. This will help them for one, understand and grow in the knowledge of the gospel, feeding their testimonies, and two, to know how what they need to do to share the gospel with their friends or family. They can receive revelation as to what step they need to take next to help their friend or what they need to say. So for the past week we've been doing this with the members, and they haven't been able to think of any of their friends as we share our lesson. But last night, we had spent quite a bit of time at our bishop's home talking about missionary work, (since we basically don't have a ward mission leader), and before we left we shared one of the lessons. They chose to listen to the first discussion, the restoration. That family is seriously my favorite! they have 6 kids all under the age of 13, and they took the role playing seriously! even bishop and his wife! they pounded us with questions and even stumped us with some! After the lesson though, the bishop looked at us and said, "thank you for being great missionaries, you sisters have helped our ward tremendously, and i just want to compliment you both on being amazing missionaries. We've had good missionaries in the past, and not so good, the ward knows who the good missionaries are. But you both are great missionaries, and we 're so grateful for your service." I'm not trying to brag, really! But you don't know how much that meant to Sister George and I! AS a missionary you just sometimes feel like another missionary in the ward to the members. But to hear that from the bishop meant so much to us! We know that he really trusts us, and really that we can trust him! So it was really nice to hear that from a member, let alone the bishop. I love the Carter family so much! He and his wife are actually both from Idaho and went to ricks college, so i naturally like them alot:) he's probably my favorite bishop i've served with, (not including my bishops from home:) ). 

I hope everyone has another blessed week! 
Love, Sister Hulme

No comments:

Post a Comment