Monday, June 23, 2014

Transfer #3 (June 16)

Why hello my loves! This is the last week of transfer number THREE! I've been in Caldwell for four months. Crazy. This has been the fastest transfer, I swear. I'm anticipating the call from President on Saturday could be ANYTHING. The possibilities are endless, really. I could stay, but I could also go. You'll know next week!
Looking back on these past six weeks, a lot has happened, but at the same time, it seems like nothing happened.
Sadly, we have no progressing investigators or less-actives for that matter. However, Sister Seaich and I are still continuing in our efforts to sow in this area, even if we don't get a chance to reap. I've often thought about what we're doing wrong. Honestly, Sister Seaich and I have worked really hard to invite others to come unto Christ, just as our purpose states. We've done a great job fulfilling our purpose, but even though we've filled our part of the bargain, it's not hurting us if investigators and less actives don't show up to church or keep their commitments. It's way too easy to get discouraged when the area seems to be suffering, but in all reality, it's not suffering at all. We're doing everything we possibly can to find people and teach them. It all comes back to agency. My companion and I teach people, not lessons. We make sure they understand what we're teaching, that they can feel the spirit testify of truth, and we extend commitments and follow-up. It's up to them and their use of agency to keep those commitments.
What I do need to be better about is doing a thorough follow-up rather than just brushing the "Oh no, I was too busy to read [insert reading assignment here]" off the shoulder. So that's my personal goal this week: to really emphasize the reason for and importance of the commitments we extend. Maybe then the people in our area will begin to understand the why of church.
All in all, it wasn't a bad week at all. In fact, we had some pretty awesome moments!
We taught a lady named Rachel over at a 5th ward family's home. It was a pretty great lesson. We started off asking inspired questions. After Rachel had said they aren't attending a church, I immediately asked, "Why?" Where'd that even come from? She thought about it for a minute. Here she was, a religious woman, and she hadn't really thought about why she hasn't chosen a church. Her response was fabulous. She said, "I haven't found a church that is fit for my family." From that point, we were able to make a perfect transition into the first lesson. The second point is: The Gospel Blesses Families. She really liked that. Rachel is a fireball. She has a LOT of questions. She asked what members of the church think about other religions. Sister Angell shared the 11th Article of Faith with her: "We claim the privilege of worshiping Almighty God according to the dictates of our own conscience, and allow all men the same privilege, let them worship how, where, or what they may." Then she explained that we do not preach about other religions from our pulpit. We respect all other faiths. Rachel was content about that. It was a really great lesson. We gave her a Book of Mormon and invited her to read the introduction and testimonies found in the first few pages. She accepted. Hopefully she'll follow through with those commitments!
We met a man while out contacting members to find less-actives, and this man said, "I don't go to church anymore. I've done my time. I'm good." Nooooooo! Does "Endure to the End" not mean anything to this man? He was super standoffish so we didn't get a chance to share anything with him. Oh well.
We finally met a less active man in the ward, Tom. He is angry at the church, meaning the people of the church. When his wife died, people said, "God took her for a reason." That just upset him even more. Some things are just left better left unsaid. When I thought more about it, I decided that God doesn't "take" people. He just lets death happen. I wanted so badly to tell him that I wasn't there to tell him what those people said, but I do know that through Christ, he can find comfort and closure. We really want to help him work towards the goal of being sealed to his wife in the temple. I think that'd be amazing. We aren't going to give up. He may have a lot of issues with people, but he so desperately needs the blessings the gospel can bring to him and his life.
It was really was a great week. We met a lot of people we can help. 
Hopefully there will be one who will choose to benefit from the spirit we bring! 
I want to end my email with a quote that Sister McCleve shared in Gospel Principles yesterday: 
"When obedience ceases to be airritant and becomes our quest, in that moment God will endow us with power." 
Ezra Taft Benson
I love you all so much! Happy belated Fathers Day to all the fathers out there! Y'all are great! Have a fantastic week everybody! 
Sister Tyler


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