This week, something terrible happened! Our area got SPLIT! I don't think anything could have been more sad for me, due to the fact that my very favorite recently reactivated sister lives on the other side of the area. It has been such a miracle to see her journey back into activity, and I miss her already, but I know that she is in the hands of the two new good and faithful missionaries of the now "Fort Madison South Area."
Other than that, we are still doing missionary work. This mission is growing exponentially. This last transfer, 37 new missionaries entered the field and only 10 went home! It has been incredible. Every area in our district has been split, so now instead of 4 areas in the district, we have 6!(One was split last transfer) That brings the total missionaries in our district up to a grand total of 13. I was getting stage fright just standing up at district meeting and giving a training... it's nuts! It's funny too, because half of the district is way older than me, and I'm supposed to be their leader! It's probably one of the most stressful things, especially with all of the areas opening up, because I want to be such a good missionary, but sometimes sheer inexperience trips me up. I have already changed so much in the way that I think and work and pray and study, but I still have so far to go!
So it's miracle time! This is my favorite part of the week:) This week, we have been caught up in a lot of logistical things getting the other missionaries locked into place with their living situation and things, so it's been hard to find time to see and keep in contact with our investigators. This caused a lot of worry for me because a young man named C*** that we have been working with really struggles with depression and anxiety, so we feel a real need to keep in contact with him on a daily basis. He has a baptismal date, but it has been getting more and more shaky since we set it. This week when we went to teach him, my fears were all realized. He was acting super unnatural, wanting to smoke in front of us, asking us weird questions, and acting a little bit like he was drunk. We asked a lot of questions, but he just wouldn't open up to us and the member that we brought. Eventually, we had the Spirit tell us to show him Elder Holland's talk from this last conference about mental issues, and so we asked if he had a computer. As we watched the talk, C*** didn't change one bit. At the end of the lesson, the member bore a strong testimony about the love that exists in the church, and how Christ can help everyone, no matter their situation, but still, his expression was unchanged. We exited the lesson a bit downhearted.
The next morning during our study hour, C*** called us. "Hello, this is Elder Brown!" I said nervously, not sure if he was calling to drop us.
"Hey Elder Brown," Said C***, "I just was calling..." He paused, and I clenched my teeth, bracing for the blow, "I just was calling to apologize for last night. I wasn't myself. I... I want to be baptized and learn about the...Jesus Christ." My jaw dropped.
"Hey, C***! Don't worry about it man," I said, my grimace turning into a shocked expression, "We totally understand. Last night was rough for you. But... What changed?"
"Well, after you left, I got back on youtube, and I listened to more talks from that guy. I really felt good. Then I watched a video about missionaries helping this one lady who was a party animal. I thought, 'if she can change, I definitely can'."
AH! I think I gave my companion a hug, and ran around the house screaming after that. It was a good morning:)
I know that D&C 123:17 is true. "Let us cheerfully do all things which lie in our power; and then may we stand still, with the utmost assurance, to see the salvation of God, and for his arm to be revealed." This gospel is true! I love to share it. Do your best to become the faithful proclaimers of the Gospel that the Lord needs His children to be! I love each one of you! I'm excited to hear your missionary experiences! I loved the letters I have received, and thank you so much for the package! Also, Dad, you made Elder Lindhardt's week. That's the first letter he's gotten. He said, "Man, your dad is AWESOME!" I said, "Oh, believe me, I know." :)
I love you guys!
PS This is me and my favorite Assistant to the President. He just went home this week. I got to know him really well because he served with Elder Adamson. It was almost like I was sending home my trainer all over again!:(