My family and friends,
Crazy week here in the WA-TAC. We had our Christmas party as a mission, which was amazing. I love the spirit of Christmas. We have a goal as a mission to see 200 people enter the waters of baptism in the month of December. We are well on our way. I did get packages for Christmas so thank you! They are now sitting under our little tree that a member let us borrow. Mom I did buy some boots at wal-mart, so no worries :)
Some news! President Bowen called Sister Burgess and I early last week and told us we would be getting a third companion last week. Sister Directo is from the Phillipines and is a sister missionariy that is at Temple Square but gets to visit us in the WA-TAC for 3 months. We LOVE her! And she has brought a great spirit to our companionship... along with many miracles.
What an extraordinary week it has been here in Sequim. Sharing all the miracle we witnessed this week would fill volumes. I wish I had the time to share them all with you. You'll have to be satisfied with some of my favorites. The first is a story about a man named Raj Singh. He's a very kind hindu man. The three of us prayed so hard that we could find a family of angels to put on the tree in the mission office (the angels represent people baptized this month, It looks like Washington is going to have a white christmas after all). We started our evening of tracting with little success. Every door seemed to be vacant on the other end. And it was cold, very cold. It was an hour into knocking doors when we met Raj. The smell of Indian food flooded out his warm home when he opened the door. He began not being interested at all. But something changed as we shared why we'd come to his door. He agreed to come on a tour of the church. He has a family with two children and his wife. Unfortunately he had some family come in from out of town unexpectedly, but he called us and told us he still really wanted to bring his family to the church. It's an amazing thing to see the spirit work on somebody in such a short time. This man was not interested, but the spirit can soften hearts so quickly if they are humble and prepared. I love seeing the change in theire eyes. This work is real. The spirit is there.
Another amazing miracle we found by the name of Paul Preston. His dad, Mike was baptized as a child but hasn't gone to church since he was a child. We stopped by to meet Mike, but his son Paul answered the door, Mike wasn't home. We talked to Paul for a brief second and then left. As we were in the car I felt like the spirit was almost yelling at me for not talking to Paul more. He seemed so sad, but we'd already left his door. The next 24 hours were almost torture as I felt an imense amount of urgency to go back to see Paul. We went back on Saturday night. Paul opened up to us immediately as he shared that just last week he had tried to take his own life for the 7th time. We had a member pick him up and we brought him down to the church almost immediately. It was one of the most sacred experiences of my mission and one of the most miraculous. Words came out of my mouth that I had never said, words that were not mine. Paul commited to be baptized on Christmas day. He came to church on Sunday and left smiling, saying he really felt something different. He went to the Young Single Adult family home evening last night and we taught a lesson on modern day prophets and apostles and what peace they bring into our lives. Again he left smiling. I don't think Paul has smiled much in his life. We met again with him today and had a powerfull discussion in the home of some members about how he can know of the truth for him self. There is a light in his eyes that wasn't there before. He's changing before our very own eyes. We are fasting with him and the Johnson family this Sunday. This work changes people.... No its not the work that changes people, the work changes us, but the Savior changes people. He makes them whole. The joy of seeing that change is beyond words. It is in fact miraculous. Serving a mission isn't a sacrifice. I've never been so happy in my life. Most days I wish I could do this forever.
I'm so blessed this Christmas season to know that Jesus Christ lives. That he speaks to us today through his prophets and apostles. Not only that but he speaks to us personally and individually as we pray and read the scriptures. The Book of Mormon has become my best friend. I rely on it daily for strength and guidance. The Gospel of Jesus Christ is on the earth in its fullness! What an exciting time it is. We know the happiness that the world seeks. We just need the courage to open our mouths and share it! I LOVE sharing it with the people here in Sequim. I love you all and hope you have a wonderful week.