Friends, family, etc.
This week has been slower than most (in a very literal sense) since our beloved car was in the autobody shop for half of it. Lots of biking, walking, and hitching rides. Made us feel on par with this lil' guy
The sisters in our zone, Muti and Taylor, helped us out and met us at the shop post-exchange and dropped us off. Tender mercies come in companionships.
Bainbridge Island is such an anomaly. Sister Madsen and I talk about how this place is such a paradox all the time. It's full of people who are earthy but not down to earth. It's boondocks-y but full of high tech Seattlites. People in the fast lane, but run on "island time". It makes our brains hurt trying to understand it all - but really, the island-time thing here is a struggle - there isn't any sense of urgency with anyone here, especially those we teach.
Exhibit A: active non-members that have been coming to church for 23 years and hold multiple callings and attend seminary...
Exhibit B: our investigator Craig decided that for his baptism date, he would like November 99th...yep.
But in all reality, it is also an amazing place. During Fast Sunday, everyone who bore their testimony was either a convert (the ward has more converts to the church than those raised in the church, Bishop included), a youth or a returned mission president. Talk about a powerhouse ward. And a quote from one of the kids who spoke, named Fox: " Jesus wants us to love every each one another."
This week has also been a week of tiny little miracles, because we figure extra park days equal extra miracles -
After a few months of trying to find a potential we met my second week on the Island, named Ben, after a little nudge by the Spirit we were able to talk with him right as he got home from school and then had the best lesson with him a few days after. Ben is 14, comes from an atheist home, recently became a Christian, loves to learn all he can about the Savior and wants to be baptized as soon as possible.
Three different members of our ward referring us to this woman Clara, who we tried and tried to contact, but couldn't get a hold of. So when Sister Madsen and I walked in to teach our gospel principles class, and Clara happened to be sitting there with a Sister who had brought her, we were stoked.
And other random little lessons that remind us that this is the Lord's work and He is very much aware of it, and us.
Our challenge is to unselfishly sacrifice all that we have been given, including our will. Giving up what we want to be given something greater.
“The submission of one’s will is really the only uniquely personal thing we have to place on God’s altar. The many other things we ‘give’ … are actually the things He has already given or loaned to us.” - Elder Neal A. Maxwell
Sacrifice is ultimately a matter of the heart. “Behold, the Lord requires a willing mind, a contrite spirit and all our heart (3 Nephi 9:20)
Our sacrifices can and will bring forth the blessings of heaven.
And in the end we realize that it was no sacrifice at all.
Until next time,
this one's for Gus (: