Monday, August 26, 2013

1 Nephi 2:15, when their eyes change and they understand and HALLO MIJN GEWELDIGE


Oh my goodness, it feels like just yesterday that I was able to hear from you wonderful people, and now it is Monday again? I can't believe how fast time flies!!! I feel like it certainly goes by way too fast!! I have seen one of my favorite missionary friends go home this week. I never thought that my trainer would ever go home. She is too cool to just be a normal person again!! but the fact that her time came has kind of slapped me in the face. Oh my goodness you guys.....I really don't have very much time left!!! I have refocused my efforts this week and I am going to use every moment that I have to be able to serve the Lord with all of my heart, might, mind and strength!!

We have had a wonderful week!!! The work for us here in Turnhout has finally picked up!!! I love my time here when I am able to teach people and watch them grow in the gospel. That is actually my favorite part. And more specifically, being able to teach and watch my investigators eyes light up as they are able to feel the Spirit and recognize the truth that they had been taught in the premortal exsistence. It is the most beautiful thing, and when their eyes change and they understand, there is nothing that will keep them from learning more!!

We have an investigator named Isaac. He is the coolest guy I have ever met!! It has been such a blessing to have found him and have the opportunity to be able to teach him. He does not have a Christian background, but over the last three weeks we have seen a difference in him. He started praying everyday and he told us just today actually, that he knows that God exists. Oh my goodness. I just love it so much!! He is progressing and preparing to be baptized in October!! He spends time with us almost everyday because he is so excited to learn!! The members love him and tomorrow, we are bringing him over to the fourth member's home to have dinner. The members here are really starting to understand how to do missionary work!! I just love it!! It actually reminds me of something that I read in my studies this morning in 3 Nephi 11. This is when Christ appears unto the people and the people hear a voice three times. Every time that they hear it though, it describes this,' and it did pierce their hearts'. That is what the gospel does, it does that for those who are not ready and those who are ready. There is something different about the people who have accepted Christ into their lives and those who have not. The investigators and members who are willing to let the gospel and the things that Christ has asked us to do as His disciples, then we are able to feel this piercing in our hearts. We are able to feel the effects of the gospel and actually develop a desire to want to do things, want to change, want to be missionaries, want to become the children of God that He expects us to be.

We had another Zone Training this week. I love Zone Trainings. Actually, I kind of have a love/hate relationship with them because everytime I go, I feel like everything that is said and done is done specifically for me. So, I always come away built up and having learned a lot about the missionary I can become, but feel bad for all of the rest of the people that have to sit through everything that I need to hear. I guess that is a little bit of being pierced by the Spirit. It doesn't matter what is said because everyone can receive the inspiration that they need.

But they talked a lot about developing faith to be able to baptize once a month. I am not going to lie, after being out here for a while and not being able to see very many of the people that I have taught make the decision to come unto Christ, I have come to the conclusion that I am just here to make an influence. But that isn't true. The Lord has a mandate, that we go into the world and baptize in His name. I am not going to lie, I have not had the faith to know what or how to do that. After this conference, though, Zuster Clement and I sat down and made a plan. We set a goal and made a plan to be able to accomplish our goal. I have already seen the blessings that the Lord has given to us from working together toward the same goal, but it is also His will. He wants these people to accept His gospel!! We want to do His will and we are working our butts off for it!! It's going to be a faith builder....I can already tell!!

We have been working super hard this week and it paid off. Well, actually the investigators that we are working with are actually beginning to make decisions to do things like come to church!!! We had three investigators at church this week!! One of which we didn't think would actually come. I love it when people make decisions and come to do things that we ask them, well that the Lord asks of them, and they are able to see the blessings that come to them in their lives. Two of them loved chruch so much that they have decided to come to all three hours next week!! The Spirit there in the church building is always super powerful and people can automatically feel a difference. I love being able to remember that the same thing happens to me, especially when I pay attention to my feelings. Don't foret to listen to the Spirit!! It's like super important, but I feel like it is the most forgotten thing in the world!!

Ok, last thing. The coolest thing that I learned this week was in Sacrament Meeting. The speaker decided to choose the shortest scripture in the Book of Mormon and speak about it. So he choose, 1 nephi 2:15. Yes, he spoke about that nephi's father lived in a tent. But the coolest thing that he said about it was that obviously, lehi's estate in Jerusalem was huge, and beautiful. People were jealous of him. He loved his house and I am sure that it was a very hard decision for him to just get up and leave, but he made the DECISION to live differently that the normal man. He choose to follow the Lord and live in a tent. If we live in a tent, we are willing to go and do the Lord's will. If we live in a tent, we are not worried about worldly things. If we live in a tent, we are able to serve the Lord in the way that He needs us to because we are always ready to go. Living in a tent is something that we spiritually need to do. We need to make the decision to be different than everyone else. We need to choose to become the servant of the Lord that He needs us to be and stick to our decision, don't think about the house that you have back in Jerusalem, it isn't important. I just ask myself, have I completely moved out of my spiritual house in Jerusalem into the tent? Or do i still have possessions that I am not willing to give up? Good question, huh?

I love all of you so very much!!!

I hope that you all have a good week and enjoy reading the Book of Mormon!!! I am excited to hear all about what you learn!!

Love you and miss you!!

Zuster Israelsen

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