(Sent August 4)
Something that we've been stressing a lot to the members here in the Parker stake is that bringing someone closer to Christ does not only mean baptisms. It also means bringing someone back to church and back to Christ.
So, today I will talk about G. He was baptized about 3 or 4 years ago and fell away from the church almost immediately after. The missionaries that taught him rushed him into baptism before he even gained a testimony just so they could get 1 baptism in their numbers. By the way, that is not the best way to bring someone unto Christ.
When Sister Billings and I both started meeting with him, he didn't have a testimony of God and His existence. Now, he's getting there. His favorite phrase is: "I'm an atheist and I thank God for it!" He looks around the world and can't help but think there is a higher power out there.
He claimed he never felt the Spirit. We shared scriptures but that didn't help. But we learned that he learns best through examples and analogies. (Makes sense, though, because I guess Jesus taught that way, too.) Both Sister Billings and I grew up in the church, so we had to figure it out ourselves. We both reached a point some time in high school where we had to decided whether this church and this whole gospel thing is true. And where's the best place to go with that in mind? Well, God, of course!
So we both shared our experiences of when we felt the Spirit in our lives and he says he's beginning to believe that God has been directing him throughout his life the whole time so that he could reach this point. He says he's beginning to recognize how the Spirit works.
And when I heard that, my heart leaped! It was the same feeling I had when both K and N accepted the invitation to baptism! I was just so happy for them!
Man, missionary work is fantabulous.
We weren't able to meet with J again this week because of his business traveling. We are planning on talking with him about the gift of the Holy Ghost and how much more he'll learn with that gift. We'll see!
Hope you all have a fantabulous week as well!