Elder Jonathan Engle, December 17, 2013
Greetings and Salutations from the wonderful land of El Paso, TX.
Last night we were teaching a less-active part-member family about prophets. I used an object lesson where someone has to follow my hand with their eyes closed. The pen in my hand symbolizes a prophet being the connection between us and God. The first time, we do it without the pen, and while I was telling him to follow my hand, his dad said, "Use the Sharingan." Apparently Naruto doesn't need faith.
The same Father was talking about Full House, and said to his son, "Your generation rips off everything from our generation, but Jersey Shore. That's yours."
12/12/13 we met with an investigator whose been visited for quite a long time. She's very charming, but sometimes a bit eccentric saying, "The Lord does not like candy. God doesn't like candy. It's very sinful." Happy Buzz Kill Holidays everyone.
Last night we were meeting with a Part-Member Family. The wife is a recent convert and the husband is investigating. It's tricky, because between him and my companion, every lesson is a pretty deep philosophical discussion, with us guiding him towards the gospel. He's been a fan of eastern thought and martial arts his whole life, and that's where he's found peace. After months of these discussions, with minimal progress, last night he took us both by surprise. He finally became interested in trying out our invitations. Surprisingly enough, he wanted to start with the Word of Wisdom (which I obviously need some work on)! He agreed to get rid of his beer by tonight. It was definitely a miracle. I hope and pray that he will continue to accept our invitations, him having faith that he'll receive an answer.
Just as I was getting healthy and kicking, I'm sick again. Elder Gawrych told me, with a mix of serious and joking, that I'm probably being chastised for something. I thought that was insightful, in its own way.
Yesterday at Zone Conference, Elder Foster of the 2nd Quorum of the Seventy (I believe that's what he is), worked with us for quite awhile. The biggest thing that stood out to me is how the line between member and full-time missionaries is blurring. He talked about how everyone needs two things to share the gospel: Spiritually and Skills. With those two things, we are all prepared to share the Gospel. It was inspiring to hear his witness and testimony of the Gospel. The work is truly hastening. I see it every day, in big and small miracles.
What resounds in my mind is President Monson's call to action this past General Conference. It truly is the time for members and missionaries to come together. This Gospel is for everyone. Don't be a passive onlooker to these Latter-Days. We are all Called to Serve.
Now is the time to prepare to meet God. It's humbling to be a member of His church and an instrument in His hands. We all have that opportunity and blessing. Cast aside the burdens of sin, the bonds of iniquity, and embrace the Savior's Atonement. Be the person God wants you to be so you are prepared when He calls upon you to share His gospel. There is no greater joy.
I love you all and pray for your welfare. Your love and support is a great blessing to me. May we all remember the Savior and serve Him during this Christmas season. "He lives, my Savior lord and King."