June 15, 2015




Sister Breily Russ

And it came to pass...

It was a very interesting week! We fought like nothing to get people to church, and none of our investigators came, but we had 5 recent converts and less active members come! The spirit was so, strong! Maybe too strong because a recent convert had a stroke next to me during sacrament. Quite the experience. Ask me about it in a couple months!

The mini missionaries came and went! What a blessing to the work those girls were! There was a very special experience I had one day out with Sister Morgan from the Gahana ward when we were trying a former investigator. Her teaching record was full of words describing how nice she was and how she made everyone cookies so we were stoked! She answers the door and stepped out and the moment she did I felt in my heart something was wrong. I asked if any of the missionaries had talked to her about the Book Of Mormon and she invited us in. We sat down and it was almost like a scene from some old detective movie. She was sitting in the dark and we were directly under the light. Most importantly there was a feeling of more than the spirit not being there, there was a thick feeling of hate. I started into asking her about what she has been taught and she is very short and angry in her remarks of "yes." "no?" "I understand that." I realized if we were in a training, my mission President would have hit a buzzer for 'no yes or no questions' so I widened my questions and finally she yelled "is this going to be a game of 20 questions?" I politely told her how we were new and that wanted to continue to teach her upon things she had already been taught and just wanted to get to know her testimony. She looked over at Sister Morgan (terrified stiff and already SUPER shy) and yelled "well you could at least smile!" Sister Morgan responded by saying "I'm sorry, I'm just really tired." And she said "well then maybe you should come back when you have enough energy!" And then just layed into this poor girl. After a few seconds I light heartedly butted in with, "well I have enough energy for the both of us!" The spirit took over and I started testifying of our purpose, and the doctrine behind a Father who loves all of His children. Through some route I ended up at the Restoration and Joseph Smiths experience. The whole time, this woman interjecting sharp comments and slamming her bible on the counter top. Then I went into reciting the first vision and in that moment, I felt as if there was a legion of angels behind me testifying of the truths we know and the honesty of Joseph's experience. She was silent. And all I remember saying is, "the claim we make is that Jesus Christ is the savior of this whole world, and He is at the head of this church." And we were gone. As we were walking away, Sister Morgan went into a fit of what the scriptures would call "carried away with the spirit". She started to tell me how much that she knew this church was true, that she had never experienced the power of the first vision that strongly before and that everything this former investigator was saying wasn't true, but that she felt so much LOVE for her and desire for her salvation. This continued for about 45 mins while we tracted and she bore it to everyone else! How grateful I am to The Lord for such a sacred experience of hearing this sixteen year old girl reaffirm a testimony of the gospel and its teachings. If she knows that strongly that it is true, then I do too! I don't know what kind of life this woman may lead, or what happened in her life to make her so angry, but the words of Peter kept coming to mind for the rest of the evening, "And they departed from the presence of the council rejoicing that they were counted worthy to suffer shame for His name. And daily in the temple, and in every house they ceased not to teach and preach Jesus Christ."

I don't know everything, but I do know that God loves all of His children.
Sister Dowell


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