This week has been a very special week. Michael was Baptized and confirmed and it is so crazy to see the change that has taken place since the first day of us teaching him. This is why I have come out to serve God, to see people change for the better.
I have found that the best way to have successful studies is to have effective planning for our investigators. When you have a good plan as far as what to teach your investigators then you can study exactly what you need to teach and thus making your studies that more effective. It never really clicked until recently when I actually had a few really good studies.
This area is kinda slowing down, we have baptized a few of our teaching pool and can't seem to find some people to start teaching but we also need to be able to retain the recent converts we have just gotten which will be a challenge in and of it's self. Which honestly I feel more insufficient than ever. I mean, I felt pretty insufficient already but now seeing the task that is placed before me I am actually pretty nervous. It is actually a pretty close resemblance as to what I felt like before I came. Enough about that. I know that if I press forward with faith that I will be an instrument in our Lords hands, I do however need to refine my teaching skills that I can explain things more plainly to help others feel the same that I do.
Olevia still has a baptismal date for this Saturday but we haven't been able to get in contact with her for the past few days except by luck. So, sadly, if we cannot get in contact with her then we will need to postpone her date. She is a very bright girl and really catch on to the principles of the gospel she is just going through a lot with her family right now so it may be for the best that she postpones her date.
Killing a missionary (sending him home) stinks. He is really trunky (wants/is excited to go home) which makes it difficult for me to keep my thoughts here on the work. He is working hard though and teaching me a lot. Which is great because I don't know a whole lot haha and I dont want ot drag someone around to get work done.. He has taught me a lot already and I don't think that I will end up disliking him because one, he is a pretty chill guy, two, he is going home in like 4 weeks (which is really weird).
As things that have happened this pst week, there wasn't a whole ton that has happened. We baptized Michael, we made it on the top 8 again (5 weeks in a row). We have gotten really tired as of late and frankly, it is quite annoying. I read a scripture in Romans 10 i think that said how beautiful are the feet of those that preach the gospel and all i could think about was one, my feet are not beautiful, two, my feet stink and 3, my shoes are going to be #trashed by the end of my mission. We will not be getting online proselyting as of yet; the missionary department has said that all missions are to postpone that probably due to some sort of virus of something.. Who knows haha.
Our areabook app blew up (figuratively of course)! There was some sort of issue with the referral system and we got every referral from the past like 5 years sent to our areabook apps which means we got a ton of referrals. On top of that, we are supposed to count them in our key indicators for the week so we had 118 referrals.... Plus two real ones so technically we got 120 referrals last week... That is kinda weird haha. Now, we have 120 people to go contact and try to start teaching or see what is going on with them.
Interviews with President Ames were on Wednesday and they were in our apartments. Not only was our apartment unbelievably clean, but he also saw the issues that we have with it. Foundational issues, location, lease and other things as well (namely cockroaches). President Ames is one awesome guy and I am so glad that I get to serve alongside him.
I think one of the best parts about missionary work is to see the change in people. That is where the joy truly is. I remember lookng out at the congregation during sacrament meeting and seeing the atonement work it's way in the members there and it was spectacular! I have always heard that missionaries gain a deeper understanding of the atonement of Christ and I realize that it is because we get to see the atonement alive and at work. It is so beautiful to see it!
The changing power of the Atonement isn't immediate as we would like it to be. It happens over time. Just as A river forms a canyon, the Atonement will shape us in many different ways. It will wear down the places in the rock where it is weak until they ultimately disappear all together. Of course, it takes time for this to occur. A titanic canyon cannot be formed overnight. So it is with the Atonement. We must be patient as we allow it to shape us and submit to our fathers will. When we do so, we will begin to see a marvelous change take place within ourselves. As long as the river is flowing; as long as we are actively and faithfully applying the Atonement in our lives, our weaknesses will disappear. (see Ether 12:27; bible dictionary "Atonement;" Moroni 10:32; pretty much any other scripture reference in the standard works that has anything to do with Jesus Christ) Great things will happen as we submit ourselves including our will and our desires to that of our Father in Heaven I have seen it and I can testify of the truthfulness of it.
The work is alive as ever here in arlington. We will continue to thrust in our sickles and reap with all our might that we may see the joy that comes from such an act.
Keep the Faith and Hurrah for Israel!
Love your missionary son and brother, Elder Jefferies