The work seems to just get better and better every week. And I seem to become a happier missionary every week as well. Although I'm hobbling around with 9 toenails, the work is very enjoyable haha.
So actually I was at the hospital earlier today (editor: this explains why his letter was late getting to us), but this time is wasn't for me. One of the other missionaries here in Aparri got a real bad fever. He’s a new missionary from Australia, so his stomach isn’t fully adjusted to the food and water. He went into the hospital on Saturday and is still in there. So I was in there with him for a good 3 hours while his companion went and had his interview with president (we had interviews earlier). It felt nice being in an air conditioned room, so I got a nice nappy in. Feeling good right now.
This week was another week filled with success. We are working hard to prepare our investigators for baptisms this week and on July 22. Actually, the other day while we were working in Dodan, we were at an appointment and got a text from our progressing investigators. They said that the some other missionaries were at their house (from another denomination) & wondered if we'd come. We quickly started walking toward the road and it seemed like a triC pulled up and picked us up right as we got to the road. He sped us over to their house, and we walked up. There was a granny and a couple of others preaching to our investigators. They noticed us walking up and kind of stopped teaching, and one of them asked us who the people were that we are going to teach. Before I could answer his question, granny, probably 75 to 80 years old, got up into my face, stuck a finger into my chest and asked “Who is Jesus Christ!?” I answered “He is our Savior, the Redeemer of the world!” Not satisfied with my answer, she asked “But what is his name?” I answered, “Jehovah” with a friendly smile on my face. That ticked them off (because of different beliefs) and they started getting angry at us, saying that Jesus is not a God and granny started saying some other things to us. After a few minutes of talking, they just got up and left. We ended up having a real good lesson with the family :)
So we have two baptisms on Saturday, Shyrine and Geraldine. We are working hard to prepare them for their big day. They are very excited, as are we. Yesterday, President and Sister Andrada actually attended our sacrament meeting. We had several investigators present, and as President got up to speak, I was just praying that his words would speak directly to our investigators, and that the Spirit would have an impression on their hearts. After the meeting, one of our investigators mentioned that he learned so much from President's talk, and that his words really spoke to him. That was one prayer answered, right there. And later that night, we got a text saying that he wants to be baptized. How great the effect the Spirit can have on a person and the words of a leader chosen from God unto helping somebody make that big decision to take the next step in his life toward eternal happiness. This work is incredible. And taking part in this work, as an instrument in God’s hands, is nothing but a blessing.
As a missionary in this work, you learn many many lessons. Some that will help you for your whole life, some that will help the lives of others. As I look back on the lessons I have learned so far on my mission, and the effect it has had on changing me into a more Christlike person, I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. At the end of my interview with President earlier, he said “Well Elder Jenkins, you are definitely a different Elder Jenkins than you were when we first met :)” Not that I was a bad elder back then or anything like that haha, but it is true. Through all the lessons and challenges, you change. Walking miles and miles everyday with a missing toenail on the big toe is a challenge to say the least. But then you remember Jesus and what he sacrificed. He bled from every pore, I’m just sweating. He carried a cross, I’m just carrying a proselyting bag. That's when I remember the promise we make, “To always remember him”. That promise helps us in life and helps us to grow.
Love you all, have a great week :)
DO NOT SCROLL DOWN UNLESS YOU'D LIKE TO SEE A HEALING BIG TOE (NASTY!)
Okay...you've been warned!!