Monday, November 24, 2014

Faith in Finding

Hi Everyone!

This week has been one of inflection, self-evaluation, and testimony-building.  To show my love for the Lord this week, I first studied truths about Him and reflected upon my own testimony of His importance, and then sought opportunities to testify of Him.  I believe I was given a few key opportunities to testify to those who had sincere questions about the Savior.  I felt prepared to testify to them, because I had been thinking all week about Christ and his redeeming role in my life.  I also strove to use the small pockets of "down time," (as we driving somewhere with a member, as we waited for people to arrive at scheduled activities, and the time before personal study and bedtime and after meals,) for contacting investigators or potential investigators.  I feel that this missionary district in Ipoh is full of wonderful examples of missionaries who use the Lord's time fully and wisely.  I believe that this has been the biggest struggle in my mission, so, looking to the examples of my fellow missionaries and that of the Savior, I made a resolution to make effective use of all time into one of my strengths.  It's definitely not easy, and it requires careful focus and constant attention to promptings from the Holy Ghost, but I feel much more satisfied in doing missionary work in this way, especially when I'm exhausted.  I like to think of President Eyring saying "when I find myself drawn away from my priesthood duties by other interests and when my body begs for rest, I give to myself this rallying cry: 'Remember Him.' " 

I feel that Satan is working hard on keeping us from achieving the goals we have set in our companionship.  I've never had so many appointments fall through in a single week before!  Many times last week, Elder Li and I had to exercise faith that the Lord would help us find seekers of truth as we reverted to our  backup plans, then to backups to the backups.  We spent lots of time out and about trying to talk to as many people as we could contact, in a real effort to find new investigators.  The Lord didn't answer our prayers in the way that I thought he would, but we were given the two new investigators whom we prayed for all week, through the diligence of members in inviting their friends to church. 

We have a family to teach!  They are a wonderful couple from China with an adorable little daughter.  They know a young member of the Ipoh branch, who invited them to church and helped them feel welcomed at a few activities this week. They attended our branch Thanksgiving dinner this week, and had a blast!  We had a chance to answer the father's questions about Christianity and faith in Jesus Christ.  Because I like to have beautiful logical answers to questions that people ask me, it was hard to reply to "Why do so many people that believe in Jesus do bad things?"  and similar questions.  I realized that I don't have perfect answers to all of our investigators questions, but I was able to refer them back to Jesus Christ and our Heavenly Father as the source of truth and peace and answers to life's questions.  Like Alma, I know that "there is no other way or means whereby man can be saved, only in and through Christ. Behold, he is the life and the light of the world. Behold, he is the word of truth and righteousness." 

All that has happened this week has definitely helped to strengthen my faith that people are being prepared to hear the gospel, and that the Lord's ways are higher than my ways.  As I've focused on learning about humility this week, I feel the Lord has helped me to become more humble (or at least to recognize, and desire to change, the pride in me.)  I pray that He will continue to do so, and that I will be a more worthy instrument in His hands.

Elder Baer

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