Monday, March 29, 2010

Joseph Smith: The Prophet of the Restoration

Monday, March 29, 2010
So out of all the weeks that I have been out on the mission this has by far been one of the best one. We are seeing success almost everyday and so many things are happening in our area, it's ridiculous. SO...I better get writing huh?

Alright so for reason our area has been the "if you haven't gotten a flat tire on your mission then be prepared for many" area. On Wednesday I got ANOTHER flat tire, which puts me at 4 flats in the past week. Then what made things worse was that my companion got a flat the very next day! What the freak? Our zone leaders even made the joke that our area is cursed haha. Any who...on Wednesday I got my flat on the way back from a referral Maria (I'll get to her in a minute), which so happened to be on the other side of our area AND right before our dinner appointment. But once again the Lord provided and took care of His missionaries. After walking for about an hour and a half we finally were getting to the bike shop when the Robert's pulled up and said "another flat? haha come eat with us when you get done. we will be at Bruddahs." So, of course, we ate with them and then got my bike fixed haha. Samoans are awesome. Alright back to Maria. Maria, as I said, was a referral we received that was in her late 70s or 80s. Strong Catholic and just a typical Latin grandma. But there was something different about her and we didn't notice until she did it a couple of times. As we were talking she asked where we are from, we had already met her but we assumed she had forgotten. 5 minutes later she asked us again, 5 minutes after that she asked us again but she caught herself. Then she asked us the same question again and that is when we noticed that she wasn't all there. Haha. All I can say is that she will be an interesting lady to teach. So that was that for the day.

The next few days went normal and Friday for some reason was a little different. Our district leader, Elder Sung, is a new district leader and during ZDM his training...well...didn't really hit the spot. I felt so bad and was trying to help but he kept digging himself in a bigger hole. Oh well. I guess you win some and you loose some. The rest of the day we tracted and visited members. And once again the Lord blessed us. During our lesson with the Masuda family we decided to teach Skip about the atonement. The spirit was so strong during the lesson, I think it was one of the best lessons Elder Isaacson and I have taught together. After the lessons we tracted and on the last door, we found our miracle. I have always heard these stories from other missionaries but never had one for my own. It's truly amazing to see how the Lord really has His hand in the work. When we knocked on the last door of the street we ran into a man from Thailand, named Mike. What makes it interesting is that Mike had been taught by some missionaries before and he said they changed his life. I'm so happy that the Lord is really blessing us for all the hard work that we are putting forth.

Sunday made the whole week even better. Karl, Tony, and Skip all went to church and it was so AWESOME! Karl almost didn't make it but at the last moment he walked into the church and I was so happy! Then Tony, finally, committed to being baptized on the 11th. Gosh this week has been amazing!

For my spiritual thought, I thought I'd share an experience that we had on Saturday. On Saturday we got the opportunity to take Karl and the rest of the family up to the Information Center at the Mission Home. The interesting part was that for me and for them it would be the first time that we would watch the Joseph Smith: The Prophet of the Restoration movie. The movie was about Joseph Smith and his life, along side the life of the early pioneers of the church. During the movie the spirit was sooooo strong you could almost touch it and I don't think that I will ever forget this experience. I just want to share with you my testimony of the divinity of this Church. I know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the Church of Jesus Christ. Through all the trials, hardships, beatings, mobs, you name it, Joseph could have denied his cause and all would have ceased. Just as in the Biblical and early Christian revolutions, the early members would have most certainly benefited by such denial but they all continued on. Whether we are of the same faith or not, none can deny the events that happened to this Prophet, a true servant of the Lord, were ones of trying faith, exceeding pain and suffering, or in other words were a refiner's fire. I know with absolute assurance that he was what he claimed to be, a Prophet. I also know that The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus Christ does fulfill it's promise. I know that "those who gain this divine witness from the Holy Spirit will also come to know by the same power that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world, that Joseph Smith is his revelator and prophet in these last days, and that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the Lord’s kingdom once again established on the earth, preparatory to the second coming of the Messiah." I know that to be true because it has become known to me. It has become a fact that all these things are true and as I study it only increases the testimony I have of this church.

I want you all to know that I love you and I miss you. But this is my calling. My refuge at this time and I know that with sacrifice the blessings of Heaven will come forth. May the Lord bless you and I hope you all have a great week.

Elder Leavell

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